A 10-out-of-10 ride from leading jockey Vlad Duric saw Distinctive Darci (NZ) (Darci Brahma) blow away his rivals in the $125,000 Kranji Stakes A race over 1000m on Sunday.
Dropped in a rearward spot by the Australian rider, Distinctive Darci smoked his pipe, away from the hustle and bustle upfront, only gearing up for his assault as the field neared the 500m mark.
At the post-race interview, winning trainer Mark Walker said that the Dato Terry Lee-owned Distinctive Darci would next run in the S$500,000 Merlion Trophy (1200m), the second Leg of the Singapore Sprint Series and the only one of the three Legs run on Polytrack, on April 27.
“He is going for the Merlion Trophy. On that run, you’d think he’d be a good chance,” said the Kiwi handler.
“It’s a good thing he was drawn out today. With the rain, the outside part was probably the better ground.
“Vlad timed his run to perfection. It was a fantastic win for Dato Lee and his daughter Teresa.”
While jockeys are known to keep their options open ahead of big races, the 2017 Singapore champion jockey was more than happy to commit to the Darci Brahma four-year-old as his Merlion Trophy ride.
“I was booked to ride him in the Merlion Trophy a while ago. Even if there were other opportunities, I’m keen to stay with him,” said Duric.
“Dato Terry Lee and his daughter Teresa have been wonderful supporters of mine for a long time. I have to do the right thing.
“I was lucky that from the wide draw I got Spanish Bay’s back. Once I peeled him out to the outside, he just exploded away.
“For some reason, I was a bit concerned about the 1000m today, I don’t know why. Probably because he is more of an 1100m-1200m horse, but yes, he will get the Merlion Trophy up to his ears.”
Distinctive Darci has now amassed more than S$580,000 in prizemoney for the Fairdeal Stable of Dato Lee. -STC