Harveywallbanger finds the right mix second-up

After a less than impressive debut, Harveywallbanger atoned with a gutsy all-the-way win in the $75,000 Restricted Maiden race over 1200m on Friday night.

The Casino Prince three-year-old, who is named after a cocktail, was never in with a shout after being trapped deep throughout the 1100m journey at his first race in Restricted Maiden company as well. He ran eighth to smart stablemate Filibuster.

Trainer Cliff Brown gave him a freshen-up of one month and fitted the highly-strung gelding with pacifiers at his second try.

Harveywallbanger (Amirul Ismadi) makes it all the way in Race 2, picture Singapore Turf Club

Ridden by four pound-claiming apprentice jockey Amirul Ismadi, Harveywallbanger, who shortened to $56 before the off, bounced straight to the lead from his barrier No 2 and looked to have the race under his control from thereon in.

Turning for home, Harveywallbanger had the race shot to pieces as he drew clear to a commanding break, only to weaken late as debutant King Of Household (Nooresh Juglall) wore him down to finish a length second. Kranji Gold (Barend Vorster) ran third another 1 ¾ lengths away.

The winning time was 1min 11.74secs for the 1200m on the Short Course.

“Nothing went right at his first race. He overraced and was caught deep,” said Brown’s assistant-trainer Tim Fitzsimmons.

“But we got him on the right way in front tonight. He had time to get through his gears, get his rhythm and balance.

“It’s good for the owners (headed by Nick Johnston who also owns Laughing Gravy, a contender in the Dester Singapore Gold Cup next Sunday) to have another good horse.”

Amirul, who has struck a fruitful association with the Brown yard this year (six wins), said the precious nuggets of advice from Rodd went a long way in delivering the goods.

“He was more settled tonight. I was able to go forward and he relaxed quite well,” said the Ipoh-born rider.

“Michael told me he had a bit of a hard mouth and he would throw his head around, but he did the right thing tonight.

“If he keeps improving, I have no doubt he will get over more ground.”