Lim’s Kosciuszko lowered the colours of favourite Golden Monkey in a resolute win in the Tropaios 2013 Stakes, a Class 1 race over 1200m in Singapore on Saturday.
First-up three months after he beat the same Golden Monkey into third in the Group 1 Lion City Cup (1200m) on August 14, Lim’s Kosciuszko (Danny Beasley) showed plenty of foot to snag the lead on the rails after jumping from barrier three, albeit he was momentarily headed by Entertainer (Michael Dee) on the outside.
Favourite Golden Monkey (Craig Williams), who was third in the running between the pair, began to wind up for home upon turning. Beasley upped the ante on Lim’s Kosciuszko ($15) from the 400m and he motored home steadily despite the seven-kilo pull in weight, holding off the gutsy Golden Monkey by three-quarters-of-a-length.
The resuming Rocket Star (Jake Bayliss) finished another four lengths away in third. The winning time was 1min 8.29 secs for the 1200m on the Short Course, shaving 0.59 secs off the Class record set by Fame Star in March this year.
Winning trainer Daniel Meagher was visibly proud with what the talented sprinter has shown and proven on the Singapore stage, with the win putting him in a good stead to be invited for the international races in Hong Kong in December.
“Hopefully, he goes to Hong Kong from here. I hope Nigel Gray (Head of Handicapping, Race Planning and International Racing of Hong Kong Jockey Club) and his team are watching,” said the Australian handler.
“He’s done a good job carrying 57(kgs). Craig rode Golden Monkey terrific.
“Danny has done a good job as always and he’s (Lim’s Kosciuszko) a tough, genuine little horse. We had to have him fit today because we knew he’d be going into a high-pressure race.
“I don’t want to do too much with him if we get the chance to go to Hong Kong, so he had to have a good run today, pull up well and fingers crossed, we get the chance.
“We did nominate him for both the Hong Kong Sprint and the Hong Kong Mile, but what we have in mind is definitely the Sprint.”
Sponsored by renowned Swiss watch brand Longines, the HK$24 million (S$4.2 million) Hong Kong Sprint (1200m) and the HK$30 million (S$5.2 million) Hong Kong Mile (1600m) are among four international Group 1 races held at the Sha Tin racecourse on December 11 this year.
With 11 wins over varying distances of 1200m to 1800m, including the Group 1 Singapore Derby (1800m) four months ago, the Lim’s Stable-owned five-year-old son of Kermadec has now amassed slightly over $800,000 in prizemoney for connections in 14 starts.
Regular partner Beasley pointed out Lim’s Kosciuszko’s perfect win records over the six furlongs at Kranji, which has stretched to eight after Saturday's victory.
“He’s a little gem, he was seven from seven over 1200m,” said the well-liked hoop who did not take up next season’s licence and will be returning to Wagga Wagga, New South Wales to continue plying his trade.
“It’s not being smug or cocky but he’s just better. He’s a good horse.
“He’s done everything we’d asked him, gone over the 1800m, won the Derby and came back to (win the) Lion City Cup and still improving. It’s good for Dan (Daniel) and (owner) Mr Lim (Siah Mong), they’re gonna have a great year next year.
“I’ll be at home sitting on the couch and cheering him on. Hopefully he (Meagher) gets that phone call from Hong Kong tomorrow!”
Should Lim's Kosciuszko make the trip to Hong Kong in December, Beasley will still be the pilot on board the little warrior for his stab at international glory. -STC