The Hong Kong Jockey Club’s selections and race-by-race analysis of the meeting at Happy Valley on Wednesday 13 March:
RACE 1: #4 District Express, #5 Show Mission, #7 Raichu, #12 Happy Happy
RACE 2: #4 Wah May Princess, #9 All Great Friends, #12 Nice Kick, # 7 Little Wise Man
RACE 3: #12 Nice Fandango, #2 Look Eras, #8 Gracious Ryder, #4 Travel Datuk
RACE 4: #2 Super Lucky, #5 Alpha Hedge, #12 Lucky Shiny Day, #3 Champion Supreme
RACE 5: #1 Clear Choice, #2 Universal Go Go, #6 Cinquante Cinq, #7 My Winner
RACE 6: #9 Blitzing, #12 Noble Delight, #4 Happy Victory, #7 Shining Gem
RACE 7: #9 Merrygowin, #3 Brave Legend, #10 All You Know, #6 Good Beauty
RACE 8: #4 Fat Turtle, #12 Split Of A Second, #9 Fantastic Fabio, #6 Alcari
RACE 1: EAST POINT HANDICAP
#4 District Express is winless from 10 Hong Kong starts for trainer Ricky Yiu. He’s turned his form around since dropping back to Class 5 racing where he’s registered two third placings from his last two starts. He steps up to 1200m and this races looks winnable. #5 Show Mission got his second career-win two starts ago at Happy Valley (1000m). The wide draw (11) shouldn’t be a problem and with Zac Purton engaged to ride, he should get his chance. #7 Raichu hasn’t set the world alight across his 29-start career in Hong Kong, but he’s been close enough in his last two starts to suggest that he would be competitive again. #12 Happy Happy is yet to record a win from 20 starts. He’s only placed twice, but in his latest he was only beaten by a neck. Consistency hasn’t been his forte, but his last-start second is hard to ignore.
RACE 2: JARDINE’S LOOKOUT HANDICAP
#4 Wah May Princess is a winner of his last two starts. He’ll find a soft lead from the draw (4) under Karis Teetan and from there, prove tough to reel in. #9 All Great Friends has been consistent this season even though he is yet to record top three finish from five runs. The claim (-7lb) from Victor Wong ensures that he gets in with only 117lb on his back and once again he is a live chance. #12 Nice Kick returned a competitive fourth in his first run back on the turf following six attempts on the dirt. He’ll be much better with that run under his belt, and improvement is expected to come, especially with the booking of Joao Moreira. #7 Little Wise Man made ground on debut to finish fifth at Happy Valley (1200m). He’ll be much improved with that run under his belt, and although he’s drawn wide (12), he should be able to make his presence known.
RACE 3: JOHN PEEL HANDICAP
#12 Nice Fandango is the likely leader from the draw (5). Trained by Caspar Fownes, he’s a winner of three from 30 and he should be suited by the return to Happy Valley from Sha Tin. He’s fit and ready to return to the winners’ stall. #2 Look Eras is another who should find himself on the speed early. He’s yet to win this season for trainer Me Tsui, but he has recorded three placings and last start it took a herculean performance from E Master to run him down. #8 Gracious Ryder has finished second in his last two starts. He’ll slot in behind the leaders and get his chance, especially with the claim (-3lb) from Matthew Poon. #4 Travel Datuk has placed in three from five this season. He caused interference upon straightening last start, but following that he managed to pick himself up nicely to finish second behind London Master. He’ll be thereabouts for trainer Richard Gibson.
RACE 4: THE EWO CHALLENGE TROPHY (HANDICAP)
#2 Super Lucky got off the mark in Hong Kong three starts ago. He copped interference at the 400m mark in his latest, which resulted in him fading to finish fourth. He deserves forgiveness. #5 Alpha Hedge has placed in four of his last five starts. He travelled wide without cover last start, resulting in a distant tenth place. His four runs prior were excellent and he should get his chance on Wednesday, especially with Vincent Ho’s claim (-2lb). #12 Lucky Shiny Day gets in with only 113lb on his back and he should use the inside draw (2) to be prominent in the running. #3 Champion Supreme was sent out as a 34-1 shot last start, but he outperformed his odds to finish only a length behind the winner; Merrygowin. He’s the value of race for exotics.
RACE 5: JARDINE HANDICAP
#1 Clear Choice is a winner of his last two starts. He remains in Class 4 where he boasts all three of his career wins and he is capable of winning his way into Class 3. #2 Universal Go Go is racing well and is sure to be around the mark somewhere. His win two starts ago rates highly for this. #6 Cinquante Cinq was half a length off a debut win before he finished fifth place in his latest. His only two runs have been excellent and with those under his belt, he should be in the finish. #7 My Winner has been competitive this season even without a win next to his name. He’ll sit midfield under Joao Moreira and with cover, get his chance to win.
RACE 6: MATHESON HANDICAP
#9 Blitzing has crafted an impressive record (11: 2-3-2) across his short career. He’s a two-time winner already this season and since then he has placed in four from five. He’s a rising talent from the Tony Cruz yard who appears well placed to win again. #12 Noble Delight notched up back-to-back wins at the tail end of last season for trainer John Size and although he has only managed two placings since, he’s still an excellent chance of returning to form. He should use the draw (2) and make his own luck in the lead. #4 Happy Victory is another who should make his own luck on the speed. He’s placed twice already this season and in his latest he finished seventh. He’s much better ridden close to the speed, which is where he should be from barrier 3. #7 Shining Gem has found his rhythm and he can’t be overlooked.
RACE 7: YEE WO STREET HANDICAP
In a race with very little speed on paper, #9 Merrygowin gets an excellent chance to score another all-the-way win. Trained by Paul O’Sullivan, he should push forward to lead and he is capable of running them ragged under Victor Wong. #3 Brave Legend displayed an excellent turn of foot to win last start. He commands respect off that performance. #10 All You Know is in career-best form at present and his win four starts ago rates highly for this. He’s worth consideration, especially if he does get a race run to suit. #6 Good Beauty got off the mark with his first win in Hong Kong just five starts ago since arriving from Australia. He should use the inside draw (2) under Zac Purton and from there get his chance.
RACE 8: MATHESON HANDICAP
#4 Fat Turtle was an impressive trial winner at Sha Tin in February. Prior to his relocation to Hong Kong, he was a winner at Randwick when he was trained in Australia and off his trial win, he looks set to hit the ground running for trainer Frankie Lor. #12 Split Of A Second has the runs on the board and he is already a two time winner this season. He’ll make his own luck from the draw (4) and take plenty of catching. #9 Fantastic Fabio was run off his feet in Class 3 debut before he was withdrawn from Sha Tin due to being lame in his right front leg. His two wins prior were excellent and if he’s sound, he should be in the finish. #6 Alcari is worth consideration following his last-start second over this course and distance.