SOUTH AFRICAN STAR GOES FOR GOLD CUP GLORY
Top-class South African bred gelding Katak is one of 18 runners entered for Sunday’s $1 million Singapore Gold Cup, to be run over 2000m at Kranji this weekend.
The son of Ridgemont Highlands’ G1 winning sire Potala Palace made a big impression last time out when Katak finished second in the Queen Elizabeth II Cup over 1800 metres (below), when going down by just half a length.
Unbeaten in five starts in South Africa, three of the wins coming in the Cape Winter Series (all Group 3s from 1600m to 2400m), Katak came to Singapore with a lot of hype around, but unfortunately had his first taste of defeat at his Kranji debut in a Polytrack 1200m race in September.
However, he showed a return to his best form last time out, and connections are hopeful Katak can continue his improved form on Sunday.
Trainer Ricardo Le Grange is confident of another good run from Katak on Sunday, saying, “After his run in the QEII Cup, I feel he’s had the best month since he’s been here,” the South African-born trainer said.
“There’s a glint in his eyes, his coat looks great and his blood picture is great. He has really come on from that last start in the QEII Cup where he finally showed his best.
“I think it’s taken a while for him to acclimatise, as we saw at his first two starts. He has really acclimatised now, and his fitness level has kept going up.
“He’s had a great preparation towards the Gold Cup, the race he was brought for. He trialled very well last week (won a barrier trial under Kellady on November 2).”
Bred by Highlands, Katak is out of the Windrush mare Sapphire Silk.