Sweet In Defeat: Sha Tin Champions Day (M66)


Sha Tin had a turf track presented in GOOD condition with the running rail set in the “A” or “true” position.

The track played on the slower side overall and adjustments were made. Winners came (from the 600m) from 0.3 to 5.6 lengths from the leader, 2nd through 11th position in the running, 1-4 wide around the bend and in lanes 4-16 in the home straight. The rail was okay in the running, probably a touch better off the rail, but in the home straight the inside 2 lanes were clearly inferior.

RACE 1: C4 - 1400m
Course: TURF "A"     Going: GOOD

NOTE: Enchanting Start was found lame after the race. The pace was slow early and this became a sprint home, upgrading the effort of the winner Hall Of Champ, who came from well back in the field under top weight. He can go up in class and prove competitive. It also showed that the pattern suited. Super Mission was suited by the tempo but faced the breeze three-wide with no cover and fought on quite well.

RACE 2: C4 - 1200m
Course: TURF "A"     Going: GOOD

The early tempo was strong enough and Party Genius unleashed the equal 10th-best final-200m (11.32) at the meeting to win. He had the tempo and was in the right spot in the track to let down nicely, and clearly he goes much better when ridden with patience in the early stages, notwithstanding he doesn’t necessarily need to be that far back in the running. Packing Award (SID) was a horror show, he never saw daylight and he can keep for another day. Bella Baby let down well too, he also has hit form and will be competitive again. I expect the form to work out well enough from this race.

RACE 3: C3 - 1200M
Course: TURF "A"     Going: GOOD

The pace was good and this race rated about where it should. All-in-all, it was a good win by War Of Courage, he was close enough to a decent tempo and fought on gamely. Hardly Swears was held-up and ran well, there is a race for him soon. Fantastic Way was a $1.70 favourite and will be winning more races, but there were no real excuses here. In the stewards report they couldnt find a reason for the run of Trader. Lets just say he had excuses, but he had a bit to find on ratings anyway.

RACE 4: C3 - 1600M
Course: TURF "A"     Going: GOOD

This race rated about where it should and the pace was slow for the first half, and picked up from the 800m. Less then 3-lengths covered 10 of the 12 runners over the line, all that said, stick with All For St Paul’s. He was excellent running well against the pattern and can win again on a fair track and will be hard to beat in the right race.

RACE 5: Group 1 - 1200M
Course: TURF "A"     Going: GOOD

The pace was a touch slow for the first section of the G1 and then it ramped up. I had Danon Smash running to a 88.6 in HK Sprint in December, so he was certainly below par. But Wellington has a peak figure of 90.6, so he too is capable of better. Computer Patch was very good, but a steady first sectional helped him, however, staying on the rail didn’t. Wellington’s 21.74 final-400m was a meeting-best, and interestingly enough with him, he seems more suited in races with a steady tempo. However, in the wash up, nothing special with this lot overall, as we will see later on the card with a progressive type posting a better overall time.

RACE 6: C3 - 1400M
Course: TURF "A"     Going: GOOD

Another race where the pace was very slow and it developed in to a sprint home, hence the first two past the post holding prominent positions in the run. The race rated about where it should, and the $1.30 favourite Gallant Express wasn’t suited after jumping a touch slowly, but he ended up in a good spot and should have still won from there. Caution with him going forward. Star Performance took a while to warm up, but hit the line well.

RACE 7: Group 1 - 1600M
Course: TURF "A"     Going: GOOD

Golden Sixty ran to a very similar mark in the HK Mile in December (105.8) and it’s a credit to the trainer for keeping him at this level throughout the season. He made his run from the 600m, so looked vulnerable late, but lookout when he gets a mile race where the pace is genuine, he can travel and let down and gap his rivals. It was a terrific run from More Than This, although he might want to dodge mile races going forward, especially with a lack of depth over 2000m in Hong Kong.

RACE 8: Group 1 - 2000M
Course: TURF "A"     Going: GOOD

It didn’t look like you needed to be anything special to win this event and Japan dominated it. It was run at a pedestrian tempo through the first 800m and then the pace picked up. No excuses for any runner, with Daring Tact performing below expectation. Loves Only You reinforced the quality of Mishriff via his Dubai effort.

RACE 9: C2 - 1600M
Course: TURF "A"     Going: GOOD

This was another race that was devoid of early pace, and from that perspective, Tourbillon Diamond probably couldn’t have had a better run. He was given a peach by Purton and still couldn’t win. Moreira did the right thing and got going early on Savaquin. Super Football (SID) was set a task, sitting out the back in a dawdle and his final-200m (11.17) was the 3rd-best at the meeting. If a better rider gets booked (e.g. Purton), he can win again.

RACE 10: C2 - 1200M
Course: TURF "A"     Going: GOOD

Courier Wonder made it four from four and his progression has been impressive (71, 75, 76, 89-rated performances). Given this is his first preparation and the progress that he has made, he is the real deal and will not only be a contender in HK Sprint in December, but arguably the horse to beat in it. He is a jet that is unlikely to have reached his peak being a three-year-old.

Sweet In Defeat "Black Bookers"

  • Packing Award

  • Super Football