Sweet In Defeat: Sha Tin (M11)


Sha Tin had a turf track presented in GOOD condition initially, before being upgrade to GOOD TO FIRM after race 9, applied retrospectively. The running rail was set in the “A+3” position.

On the “A+3” course it wasn’t that easy to make ground, with 7 of the 10 winners sitting 2-lengths or less from the leader at the 600m. In the running, 6 of the 10 winners were on the rail, 3 others settled one-off and in the home straight, winners came through lanes 1-9. The track raced a touch quicker than standard with the upgrade coming late in the card. 

RACE 1: C4 - 1200m
Course: TURF "A+3"     Going: GOOD

This race didn’t rate as anything special but it was a nice win to Dublin Star all the same, and he might have more scope now he has won over 1200m around a bend. He was issued with 8-points for the win and should be competitive up in class with a lighter weight. Big Luck Champ (SID) was having his second race start and defied the pattern to an extent. He should strip fitter and the son of Sebring will be looking for more ground. Helaku Knight was three-wide and peaked on his run, but if he finds a similar race he can go well. 

RACE 2: C4 - 1400m
Course: TURF "A+3"     Going: GOOD

The early pace was decent through the first two sectionals. Beluga found the rail and the win, but he did have the absolute run of the race. The first three past-the-post were all on the rail in the running, with Sam’s Love issuing a challenge down the centre part of the track and late. It was a pleasing win from Beluga but nothing special. Stunning Impact will be suited over further.

RACE 3: C4 - 1200M
Course: TURF "A+3"     Going: GOOD

It was a dominant all-the-way win to Mighty Valor who led at pace, and won convincingly albeit with the pattern onside. He was issued a 12-point penalty, which seems a little harsh to me. California Levee and Smart Charade are ready to win, but need a fairer track, and that should be in the near future. 

RACE 4: C5 - 1600M
Course: TURF "A+3"     Going: GOOD

A reasonably slow tempo was set here and the final-400m was run inside of standard, but it was a nice enough win to Nunchuks who defied a pattern to an extent (was on the rail until the 600m). That said, the slow tempo helped his cause. Yes We Can (SID) is ready to win over a mile or further.

RACE 5: C4 - 1400M
Course: TURF "A+3"     Going: GOOD

This race rated better than I thought it would initially! Having said that 7 of the 9 runners were within 1.5 lengths of the winner Apex Top. It was a strange race-shape as well, with there being pressure from the 1200m to the 400m. Apex Top, once again, settled on the rail. Golden Four, settled last clearly and stayed away from the rail…..hmmm…..it was a very good run given his closing sectionals (22.97 final-400m). Maldives will strip fitter and while disappointing, he didn’t get the dream run I thought he did at the time.

RACE 6: C4 - 1800M
Course: TURF "A+3"     Going: GOOD

The pace was fast and this race rated surprisingly well. Natural Storm found the fence in the running and quickened nicely, whilst I don’t think there is much doubt Exaltation would have won with a clear run as he was badly held up. He makes the SID file. I won’t be giving up on Dynamic Eagle either, with the pattern massively against him, he worked home in the third-best final-200m. 

RACE 7: C3 - 1200M
Course: TURF "A+3"     Going: GOOD

A very slick tempo was set here and the front three (Very Sweet Orange, Inner Flame and Smoothies) were set a task. Ka Ying Master stalked that trio, one-off and thankfully held off a late charge from Smart Leader who found the best part of the track. Inner Flame was very brave, given the pace, and he might be back now. The beaten favourite was back and wide and Sunset Watch still closed well… again given the pattern, he is worth giving another chance.

RACE 8: C3 - 1200M
Course: TURF "A+3"     Going: GOOD

The first-three past-the-post were all on the rail in the running. It was a solid win on his Hong Kong debut by Healthy Happy, but he had all favours. That said, it was still a sound effort as winning on Hong Kong debut is not easy to do. I wouldn’t give up on Compassion Spirit, while Ping Hai Bravo was a lot better run that it appeared and he can bounce back. Telecom Fighters is one to keep an eye on, the pace and pattern was against him and he peaked on his run on his Hong Kong debut. He might go out big odds next time. 

RACE 9: C3 - 1400M
Course: TURF "A+3"     Going: GOOD TO FIRM

Note: Simple Elegant – was lame the next day. This rated as the best race of the day. The pace was strong throughout but Craig’s Star was the closest of those who capitalised. Chancheng Prince (SID) settled one-off, and closed very well on his third run this preparation. He is close to being ready now, while I expect the form to stack up well out of this one. 

RACE 10: C2 - 1200M
Course: TURF "A+3"     Going: GOOD TO FIRM

This was a crawl and sprint home, with the top-10 final-400m’s of the meeting coming from this event! With Good Luck Friend and California Rad controlling the pace they had plenty in their favour!! That said, every runner sprinted home in good time with both Super Star and Winning Method delivering a lot better efforts than their finishing positions might suggest. 

Sweet In Defeat "Black Bookers"

  • Big Luck Champ

  • Yes We Can

  • Exaltation

  • Chancheng Prince