Following a five month spell in Australia, former Singapore Horse of the Year, Debt Collector (Thorn Park[AUS]-Prompt Payment[IRE]) returned to Singapore to take care of unfinished business.
And he did just that when he recently took out the Listed Raffles Cup over 1600 metres, at his second start back in the country. This year the race was moved to September and shortened in distance by 200 metres, and is the first leg of the Singapore Triple Crown, whereas it was previously the second leg.
The second leg is the Queen Elizabeth 11 Gold Cup over 1800 metres in October and the last leg is the Singapore Gold Cup over 2000 metres in November.
Debt Collector won the Raffles Cup in 2016, as a four-year old. Last year when the race was still run in October, over the longer distance of 1800 metres, he finished midfield and pulled up with respiratory distress. His trainer Cliff Brown despatched him off to Newhaven Park in New South Wales, to recuperate and freshen up. After five months in Australia he returned bigger and brighter and has raced accordingly.
He returned to the race track in early August and ran second in the Jumbo Jet Trophy, a race he also previously won in 2016. In that stellar year he was also successful in the Kranji Mile, and as a late three-year-old won the Singapore Guineas and the Singapore Three-Year-Old Classic. To date he has won nine races from 19 starts.
There was plenty of excitement surrounding his winning return in the Raffles Cup with his trainer Cliff Brown describing his late winning run as phenomenal and amazing as he scored by the barest of margins.
The excitement was shared back in Cambridge at Windsor Park where he was bred back in 2012.
“It was a thrill to watch,” enthused Windsor Park’s stud master Rodney Schick, “the way he won was electric. I think they have done a wonderful job with him, freshening him in Australia.
“Singapore is still a good market for us, and it’s great to have horses like him representing Windsor Park. It’s sad that they have lost their group one status for some of their races, and they appear as listed in the catalogue, but we still continue to sell a lot of good horses up there. He is certainly very good, and with a horse as highly rated as he is, I am sure he would have no trouble winning a group one anywhere.”
Schick remembers Debt Collector as being a bit of a cheeky bugger.
“He was quite a highly strung, and naughty, and took a little bit of extra handling as a youngster. It’s great to see that he has put that energy to good use now.”
Debt Collector is the fourth foal from the Irish bred mare Prompt Payment(In The Wings[GB]- Lady Lucre[IRE]), herself a multiple stakes placed mare who won four races. She was imported from Ireland by Patrick Connell when he was involved with Windsor Park and the Mapperley Stud partnership when Volksraad(IRE) first graced these shores.
Prompt Payment is also the dam of Highland Park by Volksraad (IRE) a winner of three races. Her four-year-old daughter by Thewayyouare(USA) the cleverly named Bae Corp, is a trial winner and recently commenced racing in the Central Districts, while her three-year-old daughter by Shamexpress has been retained by the stud and is likely to race this summer.
Windsor Park will be offering her yearling colt by Zacinto(GB) at Karaka this summer, and she is due to foal to Turn Me Loose late this spring. Due to a late foaling she will probably not be served this year.
Prompt Payment’s grandam is Queen Helen,(Troy[GB]-Edinburgh[GB]) and was herself a stakes winner, she is also the grandam of the dual listed winner Harvest Queen who is also a producer of black type performers. Prompt Payment’s dam Edinburgh has also left a host of black type performers and descendants. - Michelle Saba