Freedman takes no risk as he withdraws Augustano

Lee Freedman’s brilliant sprinter Augustano will not be running in the $500,000 Group 2 Singapore Three-Year-Old Classic (1400m) on Sunday.

Freedman had the Polytrack four-time winner in the handicaps of the second Leg of the Singapore Three-Year-Old Challenge on Monday, but decided to pull the pin after the Thai-owned gelding’s prep hit a snag because of a foot issue.

“He pulled up fine after his last run (fourth to Be Bee in the Singapore Three-Year-Old Sprint on March 30), but he became sore in the heel last week,” said the Australian conditioner. 

Augustano has pulled out of the Singapore Three-Year-Old Classic, picture Singapore Turf Club

“It was nothing serious, but because of that, he missed a few days of work and I thought it wouldn’t be fair to run him.

“He’s a very good horse and I was very happy with the way he ran in the Sprint.”

Better known as a Polytrack horse, the son of Hard Spun was a bit of query on turf in the first Leg of the Singapore Three-Year-Old Challenge, the Group 3 Singapore Three-Year-Old Sprint (1200m), but he eventually put in a run that was full of merit.

Ridden by Glen Boss, Augustano was right in the mix at the 300m when he collared favourite Mister Yeoh, but was beaten fair and square by the superior finish of Be Bee, finishing right behind the placegetters, stablemate Mr Clint and the Ricardo Le Grange-trained Captain Jamie.

Freedman can, however, still count on Mr Clint to fly the stable banner in the second Leg. The son of Power steamed home for second place to Be Bee in the Sprint.

Freedman said the Oscar Racing Stable-owned New Zealand-bred has pulled up in good order - and there were definitely no fitness concerns for this one.

“Mr Clint is definitely running and he’s come along very well since his last run,” said Freedman, a winner of countless Group races in Australia but who has not yet open his account in that area in Singapore since starting operations in September.

“He looks very sharp and has been working very well.”

Kiwi jockey Craig Grylls, who was aboard at his two wins, will retain the ride on Sunday.