Former Singapore champion Debt Agent (NZ) (Thorn Park) makes his Australian debut for new trainer Jim Conlan at Flemington on Saturday.
Racing as Debt Collector in Singapore for expatriate Australian trainer Cliff Brown, the gelding’s career was curtailed by respiratory issues after posting 12 wins from 24 starts, including five at Group One level.
Horse of the Year in 2016, the gelding’s Singapore career came to a close after he ran fourth in May and he is set to run at Flemington on Saturday in the Listed Paris Lane Stakes (1400m).
Debt Agent’s new environment is in complete contrast to what he experienced in Singapore.
Conlan said the seven-year-old now lives in a paddock at Pinecliff on the Mornington Peninsula with the trainer mindful to keep Debt Agent in a dust-free atmosphere.
“The humidity in Singapore was taking its toll and now he’s got a completely opposite environment that he lives in,” Conlan said.
“He lives in a paddock the whole time, he’s got the salt air as we’re right on beach, there’s no humidity and he’s as happy as a bird.”
Debt Agent has not trialled in preparation for Saturday’s return but was taken to Mornington on Tuesday for a gallop with a mate.
Conlan described the work as strong but importantly Debt Agent pulled up well and scoped clean post the hit-out.
“He’s ready to go to the races,” Conlan said.
“He’ll be ridden in the same fashion as he was in Singapore where he’ll be out the back and we’ll see how he works home.
“I’m pleased with him at the moment but it’s hard to know where he’ll fit in, so we’ll be a lot wiser after Saturday.”
Debt Agent is being kept safe in markets, opening a $6.50 chance and holding that price despite heavy support for Violate who has firmed from $8 to $3.40 favouritism.