Continuing his stunning unbeaten record of 12 wins in a row, Karaka graduate Better Than Ever took out the second leg of the Singapore Triple Crown on Sunday with an emphatic win in the S$500,000 Sgp-1 Raffles Cup at Kranji.
After a nail-biting perfomance in the Kranji Mile, the first leg of the Triple Crown, where the invincible four-year-old left it late and looked likely to be beaten by stable-mate Waikato, Better Than Ever made Sunday's win over 1800 metres look effortless.
Ridden by regular jockey Saimee Jumat, the son of French Deputy was allowed to settle sixth as a quick pace was set early in the race. Although the pace never slackened Better Than Ever worked his way up the field to within striking distance and when asked at the beginning of the straight he cruised to the lead to capture the race by two-and-three-quarter-lengths ahead of fellow New Zealand Bloodstock graduate Waikato.
Trainer Laurie Laxon is now considering Better Than Ever for the third leg, the Singapore Gold Cup, on November 14.
"And why not Better Than Ever in the Gold Cup? It all depends on how much the handicapper will penalise him with, but he certainly is running like he'll run the 2200m."
Also on the cards for the gelding is the $5 million Dubai Duty Free Stakes in March.
With these two wins the Singapore superstar scored a S$50,000 bonus for owners Tang Weng Fei and Thomas Loke of Jupiter Stable.
A $80,000 purchase by Laurie from the 2008 Karaka Premier Sale Better Than Ever now has career earnings of $1,245,141 and a perfect record of twelve wins from twelve starts.
Thrilled to own a horse of such calibre, Better Than Ever is Tang Weng Fei's pride and joy.
"I have waited 25 years for this horse and it has been worth the wait."
Graham and Helen-Gaye Bax's Blandford Lodge will be offering half-brother to Better Than Ever by exciting young sire Darci Brahma at the 2011 Karaka National Yearling Sale Series commencing 31 January at Karaka.
Karaka graduates had further success in Asia over the weekend with another 12 winners in the region:
Horse Breeding Race Breeder NZB Sale Details
Big Momoko Black Minnaloushe - Trickster Singapore Class 5 A W, Mrs V A & W K Pike B. Laurie Laxon V. Longlands Stud S. 09 Premier P. $37,500
Fleet Foot San Luis - Sun Jacket Singapore Class 5 Highview Stud Ltd B. Mrs MC Harkema V. Highview Stud S. 08 Highview Stud Deplenishing Sale P. $3,000
Zinly Danasinga - La Cent Singapore Class 5 G J Chittick B. Mr Tony Pike V. Waikato Stud S. 04 Premier P. $65,000
Gold Rush Faltaat - Joan's Best HKJC Hsin Chong Construction H. Westbury Stud Ltd B. John Foote Bloodstock V. Westbury Stud S. 07 Carnival P. $52,000
Flying Colours Howbaddouwantit - Kesia HKJC Mission Hills Dongguan Hotel H. P J Tennant B. Ascot Farm V. P.J & B.M. Tennant S. 07 Festival P. $7,250
Hot Shot Ishiguru - Sun City HKJC Mission Hills Properties H. J W Campin B. Waikato Bloodstock V. Chequers Stud S. 08 Select P. $55,000
North Hill O'Reilly - Conte Partiro HKJC Silver Lining Cup H. Rick Smith Bloodstock (NZ) Ltd B. Mr R Collett V. Wentwood Grange S. 05 Select P. $40,000
Lion's Fortune Pins - Peninsula HKJC Mission Hills Group H. J N Wallace B. Mr Gry Hennessy V. Ardsley Stud S. 06 Premier P. $80,000
Shadow Wind Black Minnaloushe - Madamax Selangor Class 5 B W Honeybone B. Stuart Hale & Co V. Mana Park S. 06 Ready to Run P. $55,000
North to Alaska Ishiguru - Charismatic Selangor Class 4 J W Campin B. NZB as Agent V. Chequers Stuc S. Ready to Run P. $32,500
Dazzling Peridot Strategic Image - Mayballine Selangor 3YO Maiden Mrs I M Prangley-Yetton B. Mr LR Beckett V. Woodyates S. 09 Festival P. $4,500
The Lucky Steed Fantastic Light - Princess Alea Macau New Orleans Consolation H. C P & Mrs M J A Howells B. NZB as Agent V. Ainsley Downs Stud S. 08 Select P. $25,000