SINGAPORE - Record-breaking champion jockey Joao Moreira may have found his Longines Singapore Gold Cup mount after CASH LUCK made a triumphant return to racing in the $95,000 Kranji Stakes B over 1,600m on Friday night.
Returning a win dividend of $17, Cash Luck scored by a length from Holy Empire (Alan Munro), with Musketeer (Shafiq Rusof) third, 3¾ lengths away.
The victory was the sixth leg of Moreira's eight-from-eight feat on Friday night.
The 29-year-old Brazilian had Cash Luck in a perfect spot from the jump in third place on the fence behind Holy Empire and Musketeer.
Munro tried to back off the speed in the middle stages of the race and Moreira was content to sit until just before straightening, where he began to edge off the fence.
Soon after straightening, Cash Luck was into clear galloping room. Holy Empire kicked but Cash Luck was out and chasing and the two singled out over the final 200m.
After a short struggle, Cash Luck began to assert his superiority and over the final stages drew clear of his lighter weighted rival.
Moreira said following the race that he was keeping a close eye on Cash Luck as his potential Group 1 Longines Singapore Gold Cup mount in November.
"He's a very handy stayer and is one horse that I have my eye as a possible Gold Cup horse," said Moreira, who was aboard the gelding in his last start in the Emirates Singapore Derby when fifth behind Better Life in July.
"His Derby run was very good and he shows me that he is a very good stayer.
"He was a promising horse when he was younger and he now is just starting to get back to his form again and I'm thinking that he could be a Gold Cup horse."
Trainer David Kok said he had considered using a claiming apprentice on Cash Luck to lighten the 59.5kg burden, but opted for Moreira as the jockey has had a good association with the galloper over the years.
"The jockey knows the horse very well and had won on him previously," said Kok.
"I had thought about using a claim on him but then I thought that we were better off sticking with Joao.
"Full credit must go to him. He positioned the horse very well in the race. He got him out at the right time and brought him home to win.
"It all worked out perfectly for him on Sunday night." Kok confirmed that Cash Luck's preparation was being geared towards the 2,200m Gold Cup, which will be run on Nov 17.
"His aim is the Gold Cup," he said.
"I will talk to the jockey for his opinion about when he should have his next start.
"I think he may only have the one more start before running in the Gold Cup."
Kok revealed he gave Cash Luck a break following his fifth placing in the Derby before beginning a month ago on his preparation for the Gold Cup.
"I just freshened him up in the paddock for a month before starting again a month ago," he said.
"He freshened up well and he showed that tonight with a good win."
A five-year-old Australian-bred by Bradbury's Luck from Blue Celeste, Cash Luck has won six of his 23 starts.
He took his prize-money past the $450,000 mark for Northwest Racing with Friday night's success.
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