Posted On: Wednesday, 8 March 2017
Tavistock gelding Infantry ensured Singapore champion trainer Alwin Tan's love story with the Singapore-Gr.2 $S$350,000 Merlion Trophy (1200m) continued when he claimed the sprint feature on Sunday.
It was Tan's fourth win in the race and for good measure he produced favourite Nova Swiss to run the quinella.
Bred at Cambridge Stud by Sir Patrick and Justine, Lady Hogan, Infantry started as a $32 outsider but came time with with a wet sail on the outside to inflict Nova Swiss his first taste of defeat by a neck.
Tan's previous wins in the race were through Speedy Cat in 2013 and El Padrino in 2014 and 2015.
Brazilian jockey Manoel Nunes had Infantry, who was first-up since this third place in the S-Gr.3 Colonial Chief Stakes (1700m), in a midfield berth travelling relaxed on the bit before making a well-timed run to score.
In 15 starts, Infantry has won six and placed in a further six, earning more than $S550,000 in stakes.
"He is a very consistent horse and though he is more of a middle-distance horse, there was not much choice but to run him over a short distance first-up," Tan said.
"Nunes knows Infantry very well and he pushed the button at the right time to just get there."
A brother to Tavistock's stakes-placed stayer Night Nurse, Infantry was a bargain buy for $7000 at the 2013 National Weanling, Broodmare & Mixed Bloodstock Sale at Karaka.
While Sunday's Merlion Trophy was his first stakes win, he had previously run second to Singapore Horse of the Year Debt Collector in the S-Gr.1 Singapore Guineas (1600m). - Singapore Turf Club, NZB
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