Learning the hard way pays off for S John

Jockey John Sundradas used the benefit of hindsight to reap the rewards in Race 2 on Friday night.

After he settled the Alwin Tan-trained Soon Yi in behind horses in the first race, the $35,000 Lim’s Cruiser 2016 Stakes (Class 5 Division 1) race over 1200m, John realised it was not the best spot to be berthed in on the rain-affected Polytrack.

Resenting the kickback of slush, Soon Yi did not act too kindly in the running, staying one-paced all the way to the line to run fourth to winner Jacks Secret (Vlad Duric).

Special Rain (John Sundradas) lands the spoils in Race 2 on Friday, picture Singapore Turf Club

Not keen to relive the same conditions in the next event, the $60,000 Gold Rutile 2015 Stakes (Class 4 Division 2) race, John decided to be a little more positive aboard $123 roughie Special Rain, also prepared by Tan.

Though not one of the best away from his barrier No 5, Special Rain was ridden out early as he went slicing through the packed field. In a masterful piece of riding, John was able to speed past Board Walk (Nooresh Juglall) before tucking in onto the rails on the inside of Hiko Yunikon (Derreck David) 600m out, clear of any kickback.

John then gave the Anacheeva four-year-old a breather for about a furlong before asking for another gear upon straightening. As Hiko Yunikon rolled off, a saloon passage presented itself with John needing no invitation to launch his mount through.

Special Rain let down full steam ahead to an emphatic two and three-quarter length win from Hiko Yunikon with Little Big Man (Manoel Nunes) third another two lengths away. The winning time was 1min 6.98secs for the 1100m on the Polytrack.

“In the previous race, the horse struggled to keep up, he didn’t like the track. I decided to ride more forward in the next race,” said John who was clocking in his 12th win for the year.

“We got left behind, but I bustled him to take a forward spot. I made my run and the horse seemed to enjoy the conditions in front. He was too good in the end.

“Times are bad and I’m happy to have won a race.”

Known as Hold On Lil Tomato before he landed as an unraced in Singapore, Special Rain has now recorded two wins from 15 starts for prizemoney close to the $65,000 mark for connections.