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Gold Governor rules the roost at first win

August 16, 2023 at 3:53:54 AM

Even-money favourite Gold Governor was in a league of his own after he careered away to a five-and-a-quarters length win in the $20,000 Open Maiden race (1400m) on Sunday.

Bred and owned by the Gold Stable, the four-year-old bay gelding placed three times from five starts in Victoria, Australia, where he was trained by trainer Tim Fitzsimmons' former boss and ex-Kranji handler Cliff Brown.

After an encouraging third in the Silks Cranbourne Maiden Plate (1600m) in Cranbourne last December, Gold Governor made his way to Singapore. The son of Vancouver gave local racegoers a glimpse of his abilities with one second and two fourths at his previous three starts over the 1200m and 1400m before landing his first win on Sunday.

Jockey Vlad Duric was seen scrubbing up Gold Governor after the pair broke from barrier one and eventually settled on the rails behind leader Lim's Sinai (Marc Lerner) while War Star (Koh Teck Huat) sat on their girth.

Duric popped the question at the 400m and Gold Governor sprinted past Lim's Sinai with relative ease. All that was left and needed was a few smacks of the reminder from the four-time Singapore champion jockey before Gold Governor's easy win on the line.

Roda Robot (Manoel Nunes) came home late to finish the next best in second while Lim's Sinai ran another three-and-three-quarters length away in third. The winning time was 1 min 22.06secs for the 1400m on the Long Course.

Fitzsimmons planned to take advantage of barrier one to lead, but had a change of mind before the race.

"We thought about leading from barrier one, but we saw that Lim's Sinai had blinkers on, so we thought to take a sit behind as it's a long straight," said the reigning Singapore champion trainer, who pulled off a treble after Thunder ($9) and Fireworks ($6) took out the Class 5 races over 1600m and 1400m respectively later.

"It's really good because he could do this before but he had been a little disappointing. Today, he was really strong to the line.

"The owners bred him and they raced him with Cliff Brown in Australia. He (Gold Governor) ran nice races there without winning and they sent him up here."

Duric, who also booted home a double thanks to the Fitzsimmons-trained Thunder, thought the tactics worked out nicely for Gold Governor but he got a bit lost after hitting the front.

"He's a dopy bugger, but he likes the jockey (laughs)," said the Australian heavyweight hoop after the win.

"He was a lot better following another horse (Lim's Sinai). When he got to the front, he still stargazed a bit, but he's definitely a better chaser.

"He will go over the mile for sure. Today's race was right for him because it's very weak."

With that first win and one placing from four starts in Singapore, Gold Governor has earned close to $30,000 in prizemoney for connections.

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