Fourth Derby winner for Tavistock

9 Jul 2017


Tavistock gelding Infantry belied his $7000 purchase price as a weanling when winning the S$1.15 million Singapore Derby at Kranji racecourse on Sunday.

In doing so, he ended the hopes of fellow New Zealand-bred Alibi of becoming the first horse to win all three legs of the Singapore four-year- old challenge.

Infantry was previously runner-up in the Stewards’ Cup (1400m) and third in the Patron’s Bowl (1600m) behind the Michael Clements trained runner.

“This horse has such a big heart, he always does his best and throughout his prep I was satisfied with his work,” trainer Alwin Tan said.

“I gave him a lot of endurance work ... and it’s obviously paid off.”

Infantry had a quiet run throughout the race, tracking Alibi, who finished fourth, for the majority before coming wide at the turn to kick clear of the field to win by a length in the 2000m race.

He became the sixth New Zealand-bred horse to win the Singapore Derby in the last eight years.

Bred by Sir Patrick and Justine, Lady Hogan of Cambridge Stud, Infantry was sold for $7000 as a weanling at the 2013 New Zealand Bloodstock weanling, broodmare and mixed bloodstock sale.

It is a sale that has proven to show plenty of value, with fellow Derby winner Gingernuts selling for $5000 in 2014 and Infantry’s own dam The Nightingale selling in-foal to Cambridge Stud stallion Burgundy for $500 in 2015.

Infantry was later purchased out of Darrel Lang’s stable by Cambridge bloodstock agent Phill Cataldo for Singapore clients after impressing when trialling as a two-year-old.

“He went to a two-year-old trial at Avondale in June 2015 over 800m and ran a nice second in a five-horse field,” Cataldo said.

“On the back of selling Affleck [champion Singapore two and three-year-old] I was approached by the Kajorn Petch stable to buy them a horse.

“Infantry was an ideal prospect. He was unraced, had ability, a sound brain, a good pedigree and would keep improving physically.”

Victory in the 2000m race further adds to Tavistock’s outstanding record as a sire and he now boasts four Derby winners with Tavago (Australian Derby) Tarzino (Victoria Derby) and Werther (Hong Kong Derby) his previous successes.

“I’m a big fan of Tavistock,” Cataldo said.

“He was owned by my good friend Tommy Heptinstall and I was with Tommy when he bought him at Karaka. I followed him closely through his racing career and was instrumental in brokering the deal to sell him to Cambridge Stud. It’s a big thrill to be involved with yet another Derby winner by this top stallion.”

Tavistock will stand at Cambridge Stud in the 2017 season for a service fee of $65,000 + GST. - NZ Racing Desk.