June 2, 2016Newhaven Holiday Rejuvenates Singapore Superstar
May 2 – The Champion Sprinter of Singapore in 2014, Newhaven Park bred and sold Zac Spirit
showed he was back to his best when winning the $800,000 Lion City Cup Sng Gr 1 at Kranji last
month and his current burst of sparkling form has been attributed to a sojourn last year at his
birthplace Newhaven Park.
The six year-old son of Flying Spur was bought from the Newhaven Park Inglis Easter draft by his
trainer Cliff Brown for $140,000 back in 2011 and was sent to Singapore the following year to race.
He proved an immediate success, winning on debut in early 2013 before progressing through a
series of wins culminating in his first victory in the Lion City Cup Sng Gr 1 and a third place finish in
the Group I Krisflyer International Sprint.
“He had a couple of surgeries after that for a knee chip and a fetlock that were relatively minor and
he returned to racing, but in 2015 we took a decent sized chip out of his right knee after the
Krisflyer,” recalled Cliff Brown.
“The first surgeries were only a three month recovery period, but with the last one he was going to
be out for six months, which made us consider our options.”
As a horse that had achieved a great deal and still had more to offer, Zac Spirit was offered the
ultimate reward for any Asian trained racehorse – a big grassy paddock with space to roam free!
“Singapore is an unusual place for horses, as is Hong Kong, there is no real rest for them as we know
it in Australia,” Brown explained.
“They can go to a spelling station where there are walk in, walk out yards, but he was at the point
where he’d been here three years and nothing ever changed for him.
“Given the six month time period, I had the thought to send him home where he came from and
then bring him back for the Lion City Cup again. It was very good of the owners to agree.”
Zac Spirit arrived in Australia last August and departed at the end of November, mentally and
physically refreshed from his four months of bliss.
“It did him the world of good. Physically yes, it was great as he got the chance to rest and recover
from the injury itself and mentally he came back a totally different horse,” Brown said.
“It wasn’t a cheap exercise, but has already been a great investment.
“He’s probably going as good as I’ve ever had him, which for his age and what he’s gone through is
Long regarded as a nursery of champions, Newhaven Park offers full agistment and spelling services
for outside clients with all horses receiving the premium level of care that have made this one of the
most successful breeding operations in the country.