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Southern Legend wins Kranji Mile

Former Sydney horse Southern Legend has claimed the richest prize at the invitational meeting in Singapore, winning the Kranji Mile for Hong Kong trainer Caspar Fownes and ex-pat Australian jockey Zac Purton.

Trained by Les Bridge to Listed success in Sydney, Southern Legend has risen through the grades in Hong Kong to be Group One-placed and was the favourite at Kranji on Saturday night.

He romped home to beat fellow Hong Kong visitor Horse Of Fortune by three lengths despite Purton losing his whip.

The other foreign horse, New Zealander Ocean Emperor, was never a threat and finished eighth.

“He’s a real dude this horse,” Fownes said.

“He was chilled throughout his stay here and has really enjoyed himsel.

“He was a fit horse. We made sure he had enough work and he trialled prior to coming to Singapore.

“He’s a versatile horse who can handle any type of going and obviously any direction as well, as we saw tonight.”

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Purton won a second of three features on the card, the Singapore Guineas on Mr Clint to give Australian Hall of Fame trainer Lee Freedman his first Group One win since he relocated late last year.

“It’s a great thrill to win a Group One race here in Singapore,” Freedman said.

“We’re here now and that’s what we have to do: Win these big races here, too.”

Lim’s Cruiser defended the other Group One race, the Lion City Cup, for former New Zealand trainer Stephen Gray and Australian jockey Glen Boss.

While Jason Collett was out of the money on Ocean Emperor in the Kranji Mile, the Sydney-based kiwi made his mark with victory on Auspicious Day in a support race on the card, his first ride in Singapore.

A race later his sister Alysha Collett also recorded a win aboard Eye Guy, her first since she began a six-month contract last week.

“I’m thrilled to get my first winner in Singapore,” she said.

“Jason’s my older brother, so he went first, I’ll give him that.”

Victorian jockey Daniel Moor, who has also begun a six-month stint, capped a big day for the Antiopdeans with his win on the Freedman-trained Aotaroa.

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