Silkino thriving after break

Assistant-trainer Sammy Hill said a nice freshen-up may have done the trick on Silkino following a brilliant second win in a row on Sunday.

Hill and her father David had always held the Congrats four-year-old in high esteem - from as early as his days as a two-year-old - but it would seem it is only now the penny has really dropped.

After finally opening his account at his 11th run in a Class 4 race over 1100m on September 10, Silkino has continued on his winning momentum with another impressive performance in the $60,000 Class 4 race over 1100m.

Silkino (Manoel Nunes) scores an easy win in the Class 4 race over 1100m, picture Singapore Turf Club

Back in August, Silkino resumed from a three-month break donning blinkers, which he has now been fitted with at his last three starts (including a closing second first-up), but Hill opined it was the break which was the telling factor.

“He’s always been a good horse. All these horses he ran second to have gone on to become good horses, like Kratos, Skywalk and Friendship,” said Hill deputising for her father who is sick.

“He just got tired at the end of that campaign. His form dropped and we decided to freshen him up.

“I don’t think it was the blinkers because he wore them before and he was pulling too hard.

“We are also keeping him over shorter distances. We think that’s the way to go for him.”

Nunes, who was his first-time partner at his last-start win, concurred with Hill that Silkino was a lot easier to tutor now.

“I had John’s (Powell) horse (Dutrow) on my outside and I was happy to just improve to his inside,” said the Brazilian jockey.

“I was trying to hold him back as he is still a jump-and-run kind of horse. He was quite keen early.

“But at the 600m, he was cruising and I knew he would be hard to beat once he got the split. He finished off really well.”

Held back in fourth spot just behind the speed set by Believe It Or Not (Chin Chee Seng), Silkino ($24) certainly shaped up as the horse to beat once he found a gap between horses, drawing away to score with 1 ½ lengths to spare from Dutrow with Biraz (Oscar Chavez) making stacks of ground to clinch third place another 1 ¾ lengths away.

The winning time was 1min 4.54secs for the 1100m on the Polytrack.

With that second win and his previous four seconds, Sikino has taken his earnings past the $120,000 mark for the Ace-In-The-Hole Stable.