Reigning Singapore Horse of the Year Lim’s Kosciuszko made it back-to-back wins in the S$300,000 Lion City Cup (1200m) at Kranji on Sunday.
The Kiwi import is the best horse in Singapore and again proved that status for trainer Daniel Meagher and jockey Wong Chin Chuen.
The six-year-old son of Kermadec flexed his muscle to fend off the admirable challenge of Singapore Derby winner Golden Monkey and held him safely at bay by a length on the line.
It was Lim’s Kosciuszko’s 15th win in 18 starts and took his prizemoney to over S$1.7million.
Meagher had tears of joy after the stable star scored in elite company once again despite having bigger targets later in the season.
“I’m relieved,” said the young Australian conditioner.
“He’s a very good horse and he has done an amazing job for myself, (owner) Mr Lim (Sia Mong) and the whole stable.
“He wins over 1200m; he wins over 1800m. It’s just a great job by the team once again. He’s a fantastic horse.
“He’ll go to the Raffles Cup (1600m) and then he will go to the Queen Elizabeth II Cup (1800m). All going well and you never know, he might go for the Singapore Gold Cup (2000m).”
The Raffles Cup, QEII Cup and the Singapore Gold Cup makes up the three legs of the Singapore Triple Crown series and they will be held on September 23, October 14 and November 11 respectively.
After the dust had settled, Meagher elaborated on how heavy the weight on his shoulders were and how that affected him and his love ones, given the high expectations of Lim’s Kosciuszko from many people.
“People tell me all week – in good faith – that Lim’s Kosciuszko can’t lose,” said Meagher who, with wife Sabrina, welcomed daughter Vienna Grace into the family last month.
“But they don’t know if he’s eating or has a temperature, or if he’s just moody back at the stable and not at his best.
“So, the pressure was on for us to tick all the boxes and it’s not that easy. In fact, it’s tough on everyone as the expectation was that he (Lim’s Kosciuszko) just wins.
“I’m under pressure, so Sabrina keeps everyone away from me at home during race week. Not ideal but it works and it’s a massive relief when it’s over.”
Meagher also praised ex-Kranji jockey Danny Beasley – who won the 2022 Singapore Derby on Lim’s Kosciusko.
“Danny was such a big part of this horse,” Meagher said.
“Not only was he a great help with the horses and the stable, but life in general. It was Danny who told me to watch Jimmy (Wong Chin Chuen) a few years back, so after Danny went home (to Australia), Jimmy had been faultless.”
Bred by Trelawney Stud, Lim’s Kosciuszko was passed in as a two-year-old at the New Zealand Bloodstock Ready To Run Sale and then sold privately after winning his first and only trial in New Zealand when under the care of Clayton Chipperfield.
Lim’s Kosciuszko is the first foal out of Keeper mare Jacquetta, winner of the Listed Welcome Stakes, as well as a Group Two placegetter. -STC/NZ Racing Desk