Nationality turns on the style
He tops the trials on a wet Tuesday morning
What's with Nationality? He seems to have gone flat.
After getting us so excited when winning at his second Kranji start, he seems to have lost his way - or, could it be, his zest for racing?
That win was way back in October of 2018 - some 15 months ago. Since then, he has been firing blanks.
It's not that he's punching above his weight. He's still in Class 3. But he's far from repaying his $300,000 purchase price.
The season gone by wasn't a glowing one for the son of Commands. But he was running some pretty decent races towards the tail-end of that campaign.
Like that third-place finish behind Star Of Jupiter in October. After racing wide and without cover for most of the 1,000m trip, he managed to get his head in front at the 200m mark.
Alas, it was too little too late and he was swamped by the winner and Man Of Mystery, who took second spot.
In preparation for his 2020 debut, trainer Lee Freedman sent his charge to the trials on Tuesday morning and, as it turned out, Nationality came away with the fastest time of the morning - 60.32sec for the 1,000m.
Ridden by Patrick Moloney and jumping from the innermost slot, Nationality seemed content to sit behind the leader, Dreamweaver.
The field was well strung out approaching the 600m mark and it did seem like Vlad Duric on Dreamweaver would lead them home.
However, Moloney had other ideas.
At the 200m mark, he had pulled alongside the leader and that effectively broke Dreamweaver's spirit.
Say what you like, that was it. Job done. Game over. Nationality would pull away to win as he liked.
Officially, it will go down as a 51/4-length victory. To those early-morning gawkers at trackside, it was a command performance.
Now comes the best part. Can Nationality bring that trial form to the races?
Fifteen months between wins is an eternity. But we now know that the five-year-old is in some kind of form.
So, hopefully, when Nationality next appears on the track, he will run a lung-buster of a race.
We know he is capable. It's just a matter of getting him to turn it on.