Gallant win from Kratos in higher grade

Class riser Kratos surprised trainer Cliff Brown when he overcame a rather tough trip to still account for a stronger lot on Friday.

Last successful in a Class 4 race over 1000m when he stamped his authority from barrier to box, the Guillotine four-year-old grey was this time testing himself against Class 3 gallopers in a similar 1000m scamper worth $80,000.

At first, seeing as he could not win the speed battle over Nova Warrior (Mohd Zaki), caught in between with Unsurpassed (Ng Choon Kiat) forming a line of three abreast, most would expect Kratos to crumble in the home straight.

Kratos (Barend Vorster) strides away to a third win on Friday afternoon, picture Singapore Turf Club

But well ridden by lightweight jockey Barend Vorster – who got on thanks to his 51.5kgs handicap, and rode him once when narrowly beaten in second by Olympic Eager – Kratos raised another gallop once he swung into the home straight.

Mr Luck (Azhar Ismail) looked like he could peg him back at one stage, but started to backpedal 200m out while Pole Paradise (Derreck David) was doing his best work at the finish, but was not cutting much of an indent into the margin.

In the end, Kratos ($32) saluted with one length to spare from Pole Paradise with Mr Luck third another head away. Favourite Splinter (Vlad Duric) loomed as a threat when he was angled out for his run at the top of the straight, but his finish lacked punch inside the last furlong, as he picked up fourth place another two lengths away.

The winning time was 58.21 seconds for the 1000m on Polytrack.

“This horse has done a really good job. To be honest, I thought he would struggle against Class 3 horses, he surprised me,” said trainer Cliff Brown.

“It’s true he had a light weight, which is what you get when you go up in grade as you would then be down in weights. That’s the positive.”

Vorster said his intention was to take the race by the scruff of the neck from the start, but had to change tack with Nova Warrior’s insistence to stay in command.

“I wanted to lead, but I was surprised when the other horse kicked up on my inside,” said the South African jockey.

“Anyway, he was always travelling on the bridle even though he was on the outside, and at the top of the straight, he gave a very good kick.

“It was a nice big step-up in grade and he just took it all in his stride. Sometimes, it comes down to the type of running you get and things just worked out good today.

“Cliff has done a good job with this horse, to let him mature. I feel he’s a horse who has really matured and they will have a lot of fun with him.”

With that third win in eight starts which also reaped four placings, Kratos has now taken his prizemoney level past the $160,000 for the Olympian Stable.