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Sacred Sham makes Kranji debut after bleeding setback

Four-time Victorian winner Sacred Sham makes his long-awaited Kranji debut this Friday, but trainer Mark Walker is exercising caution about an immediate display of ability given a serious setback that held him back for three months.

Sacred Sham makes Kranji debut after bleeding setback

Four-time Victorian winner Sacred Sham makes his long-awaited Kranji debut this Friday, but trainer Mark Walker is exercising caution about an immediate display of ability given a serious setback that held him back for three months.

Since a saddle had been put on the former Danny O’Brien-trained O’Reilly five-year-old, all the boxes had been ticked in his prep towards his Singapore baptism of fire, but a massive bleeding attack after a gallop threw sand in the gears.


The mandatory three-month suspension was handed out. Walker had to start from scratch, but the connections’ and Walker’s patience will be rewarded with Sacred Sham’s finally lining up for his first Kranji run on Good Friday’s $70,000 Class 3 speed dash over 1000m.

Walker said Sacred Sham, who races in the in-form Raffles Racing Stable colours, has shown in his recent work he had the required fitness to face the starter, but there was still scope for improvement.

“He was coming along nicely in his trackwork, but then he bled in trackwork. It was quite bad,” said Walker

“He would have had his first run already if not for that. We had to spell him and we’ve taken our time with him.

“That has brought him up and he’s ready to go, but we’ll have to see where he is in Friday’s race.

“It’s a nice 1100m race to kick things off. He has a bit of weight (57.5kgs), though, but we had to start somewhere.

“He hasn’t run for a long time (May 9, 2018 which was the day he scored at his last start in a 1000m race at Sandown under Damien Oliver). He might need some time to reproduce his Melbourne form.

“Because he bled, we have to see how he reacts under real pressure.”

Australian jockey Daniel Moor was meant to take the ride on Friday as he had done the bulk of Sacred Sham Horseform’s work from Day 1. The horse even cost him many rides after he got too fresh one morning last October and got Moor’s hand in a plaster.

But a slight misunderstanding in jockeys’ bookings saw Moor having to ride the Shane Baertschiger-trained Sierra Conqueror in that race. Walker needn’t look too far afield for a replacement – Benny Woodworth.

All the seven Raffles Racing winners from Walker’s haul of 23 winners this season were ridden by the bang-in-form Malaysian jockey.

“Dan’s been doing a lot of work with the horse. He rode him a lot back home as he knows the part-owner from Australia,” said Walker.

“But I got my wires crossed at declaration time and Dan ended up riding Shane’s horse. Benny was the obvious pick as he’s been riding so many winners for Dato Yap (Kim San of Raffles Racing Stable) and for us as well.

“It’s good to train another horse of Dato Yap’s. He’s been a good supporter of our races for a while.”
Singapore Turf Club




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