Inferno wins Singapore Classic in a canter

Rising star Inferno (Holy Roman Emperor) gave another glimpse of his bombproof qualities after he scored a thumping win in the S$250,000 Singapore Classic (1400m) on Sunday, probably one of his most impressive to-date. 

From the way the 2018 Karaka Book 1 sale graduate from the Westbury Stud draft effortlessly strolled to the line at the expense of some very smart just-turned four-year-olds, the Singapore Guineas (1600m) on September 26 looks his for the taking. 

With all of Inferno’s previous six starts (for five wins) restricted to 1200m, some queried whether last year’s undisputed juvenile champion would be as lethal beyond that sprinting trip. 

But from the way he came jogging around the field to present fresh like a daisy while his 11 rivals were all under the pump, these doubts quickly proved unfounded. 

Inferno never spent a penny throughout the race, with champion jockey Vlad Duric smartly leaving him out of the early speed battle upfront, just smoking his pipe, smothered away in midfield. 

And that was the key to the son of Holy Roman Emperor eventually toying with the opposition with such consummate ease inside the last 400m. While he was coasting in neutral gear, many of his opponents were either flat out or just couldn’t match that big engine of his. 

Running a sizzling 22.68secs split inside the last 400m, Inferno went on to score easing down by 1 ¾ lengths from Strong N Powerful (Golden Archer) with Mr Malek (NZ) (Swiss Ace) bravely hanging on for third place another three-quarter length away.  

Trainer Cliff Brown, who was among those who raised some concerns over Inferno’s stamina, was certainly more confident heading towards the Guineas now. 

“That was such an exciting win. He travelled beautifully throughout and that was a 10-out-of-10 ride from Vlad,” said the Australian handler. 

“I just told him not to move before the home turn, and things worked out perfectly. 

“The Guineas is the plan for him next. I won’t change a thing in his training, this horse is getting better and better. 

Duric for one was super focused on only one mantra when he was given the leg-up on a horse he rode only for the first time at his last start when he returned a commanding winner first-up in a Class 3 race over 1200m on August 8. 

“I just wanted him to get cover and switch off,” said Duric. 

“I wasn’t really worried by the 1400m. He was fresh first-up and I was more worried he would overrace again today. 

“I just wanted him to settle as it was his first time over 1400m, and he did, he was relaxed the whole way through. He is going towards the mile now.” 

Inferno’s stellar record now reads as follows: Six wins, one second for stakes earnings around the $480,000 mark for the Barree Stable. 

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