There's more to come from King Encosta
The leading stables may have all but ground to a halt for the current season but Tony Cruz gave punters a pointer to a winner next term when King Encosta built on his nice debut run to score with authority yesterday.
First time out, King Encosta led up in the 1,400-metre race won by Victory Code, and jockey Felix Coetzee admitted he was caught unawares by the three-year-old.
'He hasn't put a foot wrong in his morning trackwork since he got here,' Coetzee said. 'So I thought he would win the first day Tony ran him.
'But he bounced out and surprised me with just how quickly he went and he wasn't able to sustain it. Leading didn't really suit him at all.'
But yesterday's contest was a different story, switching back to a solidly run 1,200m with Keen Flyer and Wine Win attacking each other for the front allowed Coetzee to settle the gelding and this time there was plenty there at the business end. 'I got a nice trail this time with good speed and it was perfect,' Coetzee said.
'When I went for him, he just laboured a touch until he got to the leaders but as soon as he got a half-length in front, he just drew away.'
King Encosta was a winner at his only run in Sydney for Oliver Koolman, a source which has been fruitful for owner Patrick Fung Pak-tung previously as Koolman had also pre-trained his former handy galloper, Strategus.
'He's a nice, tough horse and he always works very well. I think there's lots more to come with him,' said Coetzee.
'He is the kind of bread and butter horse that every top stable has to have and I'm sure he will go on with it next season.'