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Singapore surprise for Kiwi owners

Gilt Complex (green silks) causes an upset in the S$700,000 Raffles Cup - Singapore Turf Club
Gilt Complex (green silks) causes an upset in the S$700,000 Raffles Cup

Singapore Turf Club

New Zealand owner Graham Mackie and his wife, well-known racing photographer Trish Dunell, have once again enjoyed elite level success in Singapore with Gilt Complex landing an unexpected win in the S$700,000 Raffles Cup (1800m) on Sunday night.

The pair were regularly in the winners’ circle care of their homebred star Spalato, the winner of 10 of his 17 starts and nearly S$1.7 million in prizemoney.

But the win of Gilt Complex was a shock for punters and owners alike, with the son of Gold Centre starting at 50-1 for Australian conditioner Cliff Brown.

“Neither of us were there,” said Dunell from a rain-soaked Te Rapa on Monday. “We would have gone had we had another runner with a decent chance, but there were some pretty big race meetings here in New Zealand this weekend.”

Ridden by Harry Kasim, Gilt Complex sat on speed throughout and won by nearly two-lengths.

“We thought he was a going to be a good light-weight chance in the Singapore Gold Cup (2200m) last year, as that’s his distance, but he just failed to make the field,” Dunell said.

Gilt Complex will get his chance in this year’s S$1.35 million Singapore Gold Cup on November 12 as he looks to add to his career prizemoney of S$800,000.

“I am a bit scared that he will get too many points and get weighted out of it,” she said.

While Dunell bred Spalato, Gilt Complex was a relatively modest yearling purchase. 

“We asked Anna Scott to buy some cheapies for us at the Karaka Sales and he was bought for $10,000 at the Festival Sale. He’s out of a Zabeel mare and I love that. He was a beautiful type,” she said.

“Anna broke him in, but she got the opportunity to train in Malaysia soon afterwards so we sent him to Shaun Clotworthy where he won his first trial very easily as an immature two-year-old.

“We realised he had potential and sent him to Singapore. “

Originally trained by John O’Hara, Gilt Complex later joined the stable of Cliff Brown.

Gilt Complex has finished in the first three on 15 occasions from 25 starts.

“We will definitely be up there for the Gold Cup,” Dunell said. – NZ Racing Desk.