When Harry meets old boss to bring the luck back

Michael Lee
Aug 24, 2022 12:07 am

Steven Burridge and A’Isisuhairi Kasim have enjoyed the highs of racing as a lethal master-apprentice combo in the mid-2010s.

But after they went their own ways, they have also plumbed the depths of a few lows, including this season.

Until Split Second reunited the old firm at the winner’s box in the Class 4 race (2,000m) on Sunday. 

Split Second reunited the old firm (Steven Burridge and A’Isisuhairi Kasim) at the winner’s box in the Class 4 race (2,000m) on Sunday.

A’Isisuhairi, better known as Harry, was snapping a long run of outs going back to his last success aboard Blazing Kid on May 8.

Burridge’s last win was a lot more recent – Wealth Elite on July 17. But, with only three months and 14 meetings left in the 2022 season, the 2010 Singapore champion trainer was only hitting double figures for the first time.

Covid-19 stunted racing in 2020, but the veteran Australian trainer still fared better then, with almost identical results – 10th in both ensuing years, on 20 (2020) and 22 (2021) winners. 

“Both Harry and I have had dry spells. We needed a change of luck,” said Burridge.
“I’ve had a pretty ordinary run this year, a lot of seconds and thirds. It’s hard to get owners, but three new horses are coming up.

“In saying this, I haven’t had a lot of runners lately as I don’t like Polytrack, so I gave my horses a break. It’s back on the D course this week, so we might as well run them.”
Instead of the odd bone Burridge throws at A’Isisuhairi these days, it looks like Sunday’s win was not for old times’ sake or just one day.

Of his 11 entries this Sunday, Burridge has booked his former apprentice on five, headed by his top-rater (97) Mr Malek in the $85,000 Class 2 race (1,400m). Diamond Mine, Ima, Mr Pacino and Seson are the other four rides.

“Harry will ride Mr Malek as he’s not a kid’s horse, he’s a thinker, but he’s quite honest,” he said. 
“He also knows him well as he rode him at half of his eight wins.”
One of them came in the Group 2 Stewards’ Cup (1,600m) a year ago, but the Swiss Ace six-year-old has not saluted since. 

At his last outing in the Group 1 Lion City Cup (1,200m), he was too far back before making late headway for sixth to Lim’s Kosciuszko.

“The race didn’t suit, he wasn’t well weighted,” said Burridge.

“There was a mile race in two weeks’ time, but it’s on Polytrack. We had to wait four weeks for the next mile race, and then it’s another two weeks to the QEII Cup.

“So, we thought we might as well run him in this race instead of galloping him in a trial. At least we can earn some prizemoney in a race.”

Burridge saddles a second runner, My Man, an Argentinian dual Group 3 winner who has yet to frank that form in five starts here.

“He’s a bit in and out, he doesn’t appear to handle the Polytrack. Then we gave him a run on grass, and he ran third,” he said.

“We’ll have another look at that this Sunday. He comes in all right at the weights but it’ll be tough.”
Hakim Kamaruddin takes the ride on the grey.