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Empire keeps Rising to the occasion
9th Sep 2012
Singapore Turf Club - Michael Lee - Sunday, 9 September 2012
Singapore Juvenile Championship winner Rising Empire relished the wet track and the Progress conditions of the 1,400m race to record a facile victory at his first race as a three-year-old on Sunday.
With only 51.5kg on his back, the Australian-bred son of Dehere literally flew away in the home straight to hit the line with five lengths to spare from Tom (Koh Teck Huat) who pipped Super Junior (Stephen Baster) for second by a nose.
Rising Empire was handicapped at the minimum weight of 50kg by virtue of his two wins which equate to a penalty of 55kg, which is then stripped down by another eight kilos for Southern Hemisphere-bred horses. Moreira however rode him 1.5 kilos over.
Rising Empire (Joao Moreira) bolts in for an impressive win on Sunday.
Looking at the way Moreira could afford the luxury of peeping twice over his shoulders in the home straight, it could have been another couple of kilos slapped more on the exciting prospect and it would not have made much difference.
“I eased down on him 50m from the post. Or else he could have won by an even bigger margin,” said the Brazilian jockey who has now partnered him to three wins for as many rides.
“I knew he had a very good chance, but honestly, I didn’t think he would win that easily.
“He jumped well and was always travelling very nicely. He didn’t care about the going at all.
“Leticia has done such a great job with him. He has improved so much from his last run.”
Moreira, who had the option of riding Super Junior (he was aboard at his two wins) as well, finally pulled the right rein by electing for Rising Empire, who had not races since his triumph in the Group 3 Juvenile Championship last July.
“He’s (Rising Empire) been a good horse to me as I’ve won twice on him even if the other horse (Super Junior) has also shown form,” said Moreira.
“That’s why I didn’t think it would have been fair if I had jumped off Rising Empire. In the end, I made the right decision and I’m very happy things went my way.”
Dragon for one was happy the leading jockey had stuck solid with her ward. The rain could have dampened her enthusiasm, but the first-year trainer took a leaf from another Dehere progeny who grew fins in the wet.
“Joao pulled the right rein, but I did squeeze the rein a bit for him,” she said jokingly.
“I was not too worried with the wet track, especially after Klever Man, who is also by Dehere won on a similar track last Friday.
“It looked easier than I thought, but you have to remember he was giving weight all round.
“He’s really developed in the last couple of months and I think there’s still scope for improvement. I’d like to thank the owners for having supported me with such a beautiful horse.”
Rising Empire has now registered three wins and two seconds from five starts for prizemoney in excess of $210,000 for the Empire Ninety Racing Stable.
Photo c/- Singapore Turf Club