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On yet another quiet morning in the north of Singapore, it was again the horses who livened things up.

Just a handful turned up to make time for their Wednesday gallops on the Kranji training track but there was enough action to keep things humming.

Empowering, a three-year-old from Hideyuki Takaoka’s yard, was one of the livelier ones. With Saifudin Ismail in the saddle, Empowering had Voluntad for company.

Working on the right-handed Track 6 and giving Voluntad a healthy four-length headstart, Empowering levelled up after 300m. He then stayed beside his stablemate to the line, clocking a swift 36.4sec for the 600m. Voluntad registered 37.1.

If anything, it was a solid piece of work from the New Zealand-bred, who made his debut on Aug 20.

For a youngster who arrived as an unraced two-year-old on April 6, it was a promising first outing.

Racing against a bunch of talented three-year-olds in that $75,000 Restricted Maiden event over the 1,200m, Empowering came from midfield to power home a strong fourth to the very talented Last Supper.

Incidentally, that run came after he had won two trials – on July 11 and July 27. That debut run was a powerful statement of intent and Empowering can only get better.

The same can be said for stablemate Sousui, who also worked with gusto in 37.5 by himself.

Owned by Big Valley Stable, he has had a good 2023 season – having won twice from six outings.

It began with that victory on Jan 28 when he inched out Zygarde by a nose. The race was a Class 5 affair over the 1,200m and Marc Lerner was the man in the saddle.

Promoted to Class 4, he made the board in his next two runs – running third to Per Incrown on Feb 25 and second to Jewel Sixty-One on April 1.

That day in April, Sousui was unlucky not to have won.

Ridden by Ronnie Stewart in that 1,400m contest, he engaged the eventual winner in a tight duel over the concluding 200m and eventually went down by just a shorthead.

Stewart thought he had grounds for an objection and asked to view the race video. However, he decided to let the result stand.

With revenge on his mind, Sousui made amends at his next start on May 14, scoring over the 1,400m.

Forget that last-start ninth to Golden Monkey in the Group 1 Singapore Derby (1,800m). He was tossed into the deep end and was out of his depth.

In a more realistic Class 4 race, he could be a force to reckon with.

A pair of Steven Burridge’s horses also made their presence felt.

Ima looked in high spirits when galloping in 38.1, while Galaxy Bar worked well in 39.5. Both were on the main Polytrack.

With 35 races under his girth, Ima has been there and done that.

He has won five races and his close-up third to Rocky two starts back on July 30 told us that he is not done yet.

But the interesting runner is Galaxy Bar. He arrived on Jan 30 and had his first race on June 11. That day, he ran fifth to Citygoldgeneration after encountering traffic close home.

However, he made amends subsequently on July 2. Ridden by Simon Kok, he beat Bintang Sixty-One by two lengths.

Having run just three races, he looks a promising sort. Empowering hit-out, Latest Racing News

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