Expatriate New Zealand horsewoman Donna Logan has regained the lead in the Singapore Trainers’ Premiership in what is shaping as a race going right down to the wire.
Logan is in her first season as Te Akau’s Singapore trainer following the return home of Mark Walker, who topped the trainers’ ladder on four occasions before reassuming control of the Matamata operation.
He is setting a fast pace with 37 winners already on the board in his bid to claim a sixth New Zealand title while Logan’s drive toward the top in Singapore promises to be a much tighter contest.
She currently sits at the head of the table with 52 winners, one ahead of Australian Tim Fitzsimmons and they are clear of Michael Clements on 39.
“I’m very, very happy with the way things are going. It’s everything we do, working hard to get the good results,” Logan said.
“No-one could say that they wouldn’t love to win a premiership, it’s something we all strive for.
“It’s whether we have the horsepower, there’s eight meetings to go and Tim has probably got the equal number of horses that I’ve got and the real key will be how may fresh legs he’s got to come.
“New legs always get wins and we’ve got a couple yet to release so may the best man or woman be leading come November 26.”
Win or lose, Logan will enjoy continued strong support from David Ellis’ powerful Te Akau operation.
“David is here at present and is very excited and more so than ever keen to restock up here,” she said.
“The way the dollar is right now, if I win a S$75,000 maiden race that equates to NZ$92,000 for a Kiwi owner so it’s not a bad earn.
“We don’t have any transport costs and the vets are subsidised so that’s a huge saving and then there are rebates for having runners.”
Logan’s latest winner to get her nose in front in the premiership was King Arthur, a five-year-old son of I Am Invincible. He is raced by John Galvin’s Fortuna syndication company, who enjoy a close association with Te Akau.
The prolific King Arthur, who has won nine races and more than S$442,000 in 12 months, was partnered in the Kranji Stakes (1200m) by stable apprentice Yusoff Fadzli, who currently leads the Singapore Apprentices’ Premiership with 21 winners.
“It’s a pleasure to have a horse like this to train for the Fortuna syndicate. He just keeps stepping up every time and Yusoff and him get on famously,” Logan said.
King Arthur has been an outstanding investment for Fortuna who paid A$25,000 for the horse after two unplaced runs as Tintagel for Warwick Farm trainer Bjorn Baker.
“Next year the horse will obviously head toward the Kranji Sprint, but we haven’t got any major races left for him this season,” Logan said.
Logan notched a double on Sunday when Charm Spirit four-year-old Charminton won his third race from five starts for Te Akau Racing, having finished runner-up on the other two occasions.
Logan, who believes there is renewed enthusiasm in Singapore after a couple of subdued Covid years, will also be making a short trip home next month for New Zealand Bloodstock’s Ready to Run Sale on November 16 and 17.
“I will be at the Sale and I’ve got quite a few orders for Singapore owners so I’m really looking forward to getting home and buying again at Karaka,” Logan said.
Te Akau principal David Ellis is currently in Singapore and is delighted to see Logan in the hunt for the premiership.
“I can’t speak highly-enough of the job that she is doing and the quality of staff,” Ellis said.
“Everybody in Singapore loves Donna, she is very popular. For her to be in front in the premiership after only being there three or four years is an enormous credit to her.”