Marine Treasure raring to go
Stablemate Aramco also impresses at the trials and bears watching
The last time we saw him at the races, Marine Treasure put up a solid performance.
But, on the day, it was only good for a sixth-placed finish in that Kranji Stakes B sprint over the sharp 1,000m. That race was on Nov 30.
Since then, Marine Treasure has yet to make an appearance in the 2019 season and, if you are one of his many fans, the wait could be all worth it.
You see, the five-time winner does seem to be running into some sort of form - and it can only be good news to the connections.
We reckon he should do well when he does return to racing and we're swayed by the way he won his trial at Kranji on Tuesday morning.
Ridden by John Powell, Marine Treasure was doing his best work at the business end of the 1,000m trial.
Jumping cleanly, he claimed the lead on settling and was still in front when they straightened. The others came at him at the 250m mark and, indeed, it was Aramco who hit the front close home.
But Powell fashioned a fightback and, turning on the style in that short run to the line, he went to the front to beat Aramco by a head.
His time of 62.26sec isn't going to be something trainer Shane Baertschiger would want to write home about, but nonetheless, it was a solid show. No bluster. No blather. Just good, honest work.
If you're into numbers. it has been seven months since Marine Treasure last won a race. Before that, he put together a double when winning in July and August 2017.
But back to that last win, he gave Hong Kong visitor Matthew Poon a rather cushy ride, leading from go to whoa and beating Biraz in a flashy time of 1min09.29sec.
Although he's six going on seven, the son of Manhattan Rain doesn't realise he's getting long in the tooth.
He'll win more races. No doubt about it.
In that same trial, Aramco was equally impressive. Ridden by Vlad Duric, the pair could - for most of the trip - see the bobbing bottoms of Powell on Marine Treasure and Matt Kellady on Ladrone.
However, it was close home that Duric pointed Aramco to a gap between the frontrunners and, for a moment there, they had the lead. But his stablemate came on again to win it.
Like Marine Treasure, we have yet to see him make an appearance this season.
His last run was in November and although he managed only a fourth behind Lim's Cruiser, he lost no marks with his fans and his connections.
He had come into that contest on the back of two solid victories, including that big run which handed him the Garden City Trophy in late October.
He had, just a month earlier stormed home to take a high-class Kranji Stakes A, beating Augustano by a length.
If his appearance at Tuesday's trials is a prelude to his return to the racetrack, then it'll be a race worth waiting for.
Like that black gold which is synonymous with his name, Aramco is rich in talent and the "oil well" should continue to spew winners.