3 minute read
The $150,000 Group 2 Stewards’ Cup (1600m) could be a two-horse race according to the Singapore Turf Club’s English and Chinese Broadcast teams with the two top-rated horses in Lim’s Kosciuszko and Tiger Roar the popular picks.
Coincidentally, Lim's Kosciuszko was the unanimous tip by the three Chinese presenters – Kew Lee Teng, Collin Fan and Raymond Yong – while Pat Comerford and Scott Bailey from the English Broadcast team, both reckon Tiger Roar could cause a mini-upset.
"I feel the winner will be Tiger Roar with that electric turn of foot," said Comerford, who was the only member of either team to pick the winner Golden Monkey in the Group 3 Singapore Three-Year-Old Sprint last Saturday.
"He should get enough pace up front to roll along in a midfield position and I feel he only has to improve slightly on his first-up run – or even repeat – to put this field away.
"The danger has to be Lim's Kosciuszko as he can lead or stalk if he wants and the speed map sets up real well for him.
"It wouldn't shock me if Super Impact runs a race at odds as he won some nice races in New Zealand (previously named Solid Impact) and he might run out of skin at the right time."
Bailey agreed with Comerford about Tiger Roar's turn of foot.
"Tiger Roar returned with a very impressive win first-up, has an electric turn of foot and if can handle the jump to 1600m second-up, he looks the one to beat for me," he said.
"He was last year's dominant three-year-old and I am tipping him to be this year's dominant four-year-old.
"His danger is no doubt Lim's Kosciuszko. Yes, he has tasted defeat twice now but we must not forget he is a horse with exceptional talent and has since trialled very strongly.
"The value for me in this race is Con Speranza with blinkers on first time as he has a very strong course and distance record. He will give them something to chase."
Of the media tipsters that feature on TrackTalk, Michael Spark and Suresh Ragavan are in the Tiger Roar camp as well.
"Tiger Roar was brilliant at his first start off a lengthy break," said Spark.
"He is a slight query second-up rising to 1600m and the Short Course can sometimes favour those on pace.
"Obviously the grand final is the (Group 1 Singapore) Derby that is still a few weeks away, so no doubt Clements will have left a bit in the tank.
"But hopefully (jockey) (Bernardo) Pinheiro can weave through traffic and have the last crack at Lim's Kosciuszko, who is the danger back to a race of his own age group and at the weights.
"If Amazing Breeze runs up to his last start, he could surprise a few and looks the value."
Ragavan was also bullish about Tiger Roar.
"He is proven at Group level as a three-year-old, ran on strongly last start and will have a strong say in this classic," said the man from across the causeway.
"He also has an excellent jockey booking in Pinheiro and so does Relentless with (Vlad) Duric and he looks the danger.
"Con Speranza with blinkers on and Hero are my value picks."
But those from the Chinese Broadcast box were equally as confident – if not more so – about the top-rated horse in the field showing his best.
"He's still my favourite four-year-old horse," said Kew of Lim's Kosciuszko, who was undefeated at his first eight races.
"Forget his last two defeats as he is hard to beat on Sunday at the set-weight conditions.
"The danger is Tiger Roar who put in an amazing finish when winning last start over a shorter distance and the value is Hero who has yet to prove at this level but rain might help and 1600m should reflect his ability."
Yong agrees with Kew that racegoers can forget about Lim's Kosciuszko's recent defeat.
"Don't mind his last start in the (Group 1) Kranji Mile," said the bilingual broadcaster.
"They went too quick in front and he can benefit from that.
"Tiger Roar bounced back in great style last start. He can handle the mile and with the strong hand of Pinheiro, he may knock in another Group win.
"Super Impact is lightly-raced here in Singapore and may surprise with the step up in distance."
Fan kept it simple by comparing the two fancies and it was Lim's Kosciuszko who came out on top.
"Lim's Kosciuszko has proven that his ability is on top at Kranji at open level," said the Chinese racecaller.
"Tiger Roar mostly competes against the same age, so the Class standard is a question mark.
"Tiger Roar may be a winning chance, but if I do a 'horse-to-horse' comparison, Lim's Kosciuszko is the best."
Fan was happy to stick with his one-two selections in the big race but adds Con Speranza and last-start winner, Vgor, into exotic calculations.
As for me, I'm with the Chinese crew and the best horse in the race - Lim's Kosciuszko – is extremely hard to beat.
Tiger Roar is the obvious danger and have a saver on Amazing Breeze at odds as he has a Kranji Stakes B win over the mile to his name and that is a good form to follow.
Catch the first of a four-part segment to the latest episode of TrackTalk here.
Click here for the link to our Chinese coverage, Race To Victory.