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The Davis Files - Sha Tin review

The Davis Files - the comprehensive review of the meeting at Sha Tin on Sunday, July 13th, 2020:

RACE 1 MEDIC KINGDOM HANDICAP HK $725,000
Class 5 – Rating 40-0 - Turf ‘A’ Course – Distance 1400m – Track Good TF
Time: 1:22.00   Standard Time: 1:22.40   Course/Class Record: 1:21.53

Winner: KELMIMI WINS (USA 4yo g Scat Daddy – Oxbow Lake) ends a winless first season in Hong Kong with victory in his 11th career run and chalks up another win for legendary trainer John Moore who bows out from Sha Tin today. A very slender nose decision could be regarded as well-timed by Joao Moreira, saving the horse for the supreme effort until late in the race to snare success. Placed second up in Class 5 on July 1, the American-bred was due his turn in the low grade and nice to see him do the job for Moore who ends his HK career next Wednesday night at Happy Valley.
Runner-up: ADONIS to be fair had used a few opportunities up over the past few weeks but he was better here, charging wide and he looked as though he may have nosed his way to victory before the judge burst the bubble. Two Class 5 wins to start the season, nearly a Class 5 win at the end. He’ll break through again in the new season in this class.
Run Of The Race: ADONIS had the most to do and his charge was a strong one, clocked in a solid final 400m sectional 22.96, a race-best split. SPEEDY DRAGON did well from to run past several in the straight.
Disappointment: TREASURE CHEST gained a beautiful trip on the fence fourth and waiting to pounce after a big tote splurge, but he couldn’t go with the first two despite fighting hard. 
Comparison: Very much a stop-start affair, they crawled from the 1200m until some momentum came again later. Track in great order given they broke standard easily.
Market Mover: TREASURE CHEST $10.00 to $4.60, ADONIS $7.60 to $5.40

RACE 2 VICTORY MARVEL HANDICAP HK $967,000
Class 4 – Rating 60-40 - Turf ‘A’ Course – Distance 1200m – Track Good TF
Time: 1:09.24   Standard Time: 1:09.50   Course/Class Record: 1:08.45

Winner: VIGOR CHAMP (AUS 4yo g Mossman – Eve Angelene) causes a big upset at 23/1 dashing home with a huge finish to run down the dominant leaders and two favourites to get the decision in the final bound. Six starts in Hong Kong had revealed not a lot to be fair, though a better run last start when he hit the line well for fourth for new trainer Jimmy Ting suggested something better was to come. Not expected to beat a few today, so a very good lift in performance to end the season on a high. Sold for $A75,000 as a yearling then $A60,000 as a two-year-old, he won two trials in New Zealand for Bryce Newman before heading offshore.
Runner-up: MONKEY JEWELLERY looked home for the money when he ran past red-hot favourite MIGHTY VALOR but that final step did not go Moreira’s way this time, he’s had success and now failure in two nose decisions to begin the days racing. Another tough effort from this very consistent son of Exceed And Excel. 
Run Of The Race: VIGOR CHAMP gave them a start and a beating, had to switch wide from ninth in running when the leaders slipped away so his effort was excellent to beat them. BRILLIANT did some nice work late.
Disappointment: MIGHTY VALOR gained a lovely easy lead and had all things in his favour but failed to respond when under threat inside the final 300m. He’d risen in weight and that could be the only excuse, far from his best form today. 
Comparison: Slightly under standard and shows Zac Purton had his own rules in front so the favourite received every chance. 
Market Mover: HAPPY TIME $40.80 to $17.30, ALL FOR ST PAULS $49.70 to $15.40

RACE 3 ALL YOU WISH HANDICAP HK $967,000
Class 4 – Rating 60-40 - Turf ‘A’ Course – Distance 1400m – Track Good TF
Time: 1:21.74   Standard Time: 1:22.15   Course/Class Record: 1:20.80

Winner: CIRCUIT HASSLER (NZ 7yo g Shocking – Zaquabeel) had to be pointed to the winners circle for the photo given he’d been there just once in 49 previous starts and that lone win had come in March 2018. Some time since success though he’d placed in four of 12 starts this season and also run a few handy races at the top of the handicap. Lovely way for his connections to see out the season. Trainer Tony Cruz has stayed loyal to him and got some reward for that. A Group 2 winner in New Zealand he was, all the way back to 2016. 
Runner-up: LEADING FORTUNE was given a gun ride by Neil Callan with some extra weight on his back today, angled up like he would win 400m from home and was outstayed over the final 100m. A nice job from this horse this year, 11 starts two wins two seconds and rated to be very competitive in Class 4 for a while yet. 
Run Of The Race: ROMAN IMPERO was one that really did get through the line, settling front half from the inside gate and swift the final stages to run third. From a long way back we note WINWIN THIRTYTHREE and MY WINNER doing nice tidy work, clocked in 22.77 and 22.62 respectively the final 400m after they both comfortably broke 23.00 from the 800m to 400m so very good efforts from this pair.
Disappointment: SMART CHARADE jumped as favourite and wasn’t poor, though when he was produced in centre track by Moreira he just ran through the final furlong and a half in quite dour style to finish fourth. 
Comparison: Four-tenths under the standard in a race where they ran along evenly and quickened up off the corner. Not the same fire in today’s track but a perfect surface for racing. 
Market Mover: SMART CHARADE $5.00 to $3.10

RACE 4 THE SHA TIN MILE HANDICAP HK $2,800,000
Class 1 – Rating 115-90 - Turf ‘A’ Course – Distance 1600m – Track Good TF
Time: 1:34.28   Standard Time: 1:34.30   Course/Class Record: 1:32.82

Winner: FAST MOST FURIOUS (IRE 7yo g Lope de Vega – Al Basar) claims the day’s feature event in slick fashion to bag his biggest win in Hong Kong. Sprinting quickly off a nice quiet sit on the outer he responded too well under Zac Purton to grab victory for David Hall who has found some good form in the latter part of the season, his team racing well. This horse had won in Class 1 back in November 2019 at this distance. Win five in Hong Kong after a maiden victory in Ireland back in 2016. He was good today rising back sharply in weight but Purton alleviates those issues more often than not.
Runner-up: PRECIOUSSHIP came with a big bold finish from last and was gallant in defeat in search of his fifth win for the season, a golden run from October to March winning four from five for trainer Ricky Yiu vaulting the son of Ifraaj to the top grade and he hasn’t disappointed since. He’d won two of five starts in Ireland included a listed race on the poly in 2017. A very handy horse and poised for more success in the 2020-2021 season. He had to carry a good 10lb more today than he had of late.
Run Of The Race: PRECIOUSSHIP without question, very good run and the clock doesn’t lie, he ran 21.75 the final 400m and was also the fastest 800m to 400m.
Disappointment: GENERAL’S DELIGHT got a nice run into the race but did not let down as expected, a battling fourth in the end.
Comparison: Bang on the standard and they just walked along and steadied up for the sprint home, slick sectionals from the corner with the winner
Market Mover: GENERAL’S DELIGHT $2.90 to $2.30

RACE 5 SOLAR HEI HEI HANDICAP HK $967,000
Class 4 – Rating 60-40 - Turf ‘A’ Course – Distance 1800m – Track Good TF
Time: 1:47.46   Standard Time: 1:48.00   Course/Class Record: 1:46.54

Winner: NATURAL STORM (NZ 3yo g Pins – Miracle Miss) breaks through in Hong Kong in starts seven and it wasn’t unexpected, the son of Pins having shown some good ability at times in that short stint, and ready to win today. Chad Schofield made no mistake, gave him a beautiful trip with cover and presented him with plenty left in the locker. A little bit dominant late and he’s a horse to win his share in the 1800m to 2000m races next season. O’Reilly dam Miracle Miss won five up to 2000m, and Pins, well his exploits worldwide are well known, such a wonderful sire of all comers. Ricky Yui paid $NZ420,000 for this horse at Karaka and he will get that back. 
Runner-up: MANAGEMENT STAR was great from well back, swooping wide as the back runners came into their own late in the race. A quiet season from him, just eight starts and six of those at Happy Valley. Ends his term with consecutive second placings at Sha Tin and well poise din the new season rated under 50 points.
Run Of The Race: GOOD DAYS came from last and scraping paint on the outside fence on the turn his finish very resolute out wide. Never an easy thing to do. Busy season, winless but placed second on four occasions. Wins a nice little staying race for Danny Shum into the new season.
Disappointment: CIRCUIT NUMBER ONE had to give in, he worked too hard too early to find the front and was a spent force as soon as they reached the home turn. MCMUNIGAL also disappointed and vetted.
Comparison: A half second under the standard and that courtesy of a sub 23.00 second 400m split when the war was on up-front. The entire field broke 23.00 for that section, quite rare to see in an 1800m race.
Market Mover: NATURAL STORM $7.80 to 4.80

RACE 6 MR AWARD HANDICAP HK $967,000
Class 4 – Rating 60-40 - Turf ‘A’ Course – Distance 1200m – Track Good TF
Time: 1:08.76   Standard Time: 1:09.50   Course/Class Record: 1:08.45

Winner: SKY FIELD (AUS  3yo g Deep Field – Laravissante) dealt them a good old fashioned hiding under Joao and wins like a horse who will slip into Class 3 and beat those horses just as easily with no weight. Exceptional turn of speed when Joao asked him to gallop from back of midfield, picking a path through the centre and in four strides the race had been put to bed. Ran a slick 44.42 the last 800m. Another son of Deep Field to show ability well above the average, a sire on the rise in a big way. Dam, Laravissante is an O’Reilly half-sister to former Hong Kong Mile winner THE DUKE so the pedigree is well in SKY FIELD’s favour. One horse we really look forward to seeing again in the new season. 
Runner-up: CLASSIC POSH was so good, third-from-last throughout and having plenty to do from the turn, picking a path towards the inside as well and making up many lengths with a very helpful 10lb claim from Jerry Chau. Good handy horse this, weight no help at present as he’s not big, but he tries hard and will win again well before Christmas. 
Run Of The Race: SKY FIELD and CLASSIC POSH were streets ahead. From back and wide WAR LORD did well at long odds. 
Disappointment: GOLDEN LINK was the one they favoured to trouble SKY FIELD but he raced a little dour and on face value had his chance to run second to the winner, battling on into sixth. 
Comparison: Very slick run three-tenths outside record speed, they scooted hard up front and those who got the money at the end were the ones who stayed out of that rush. 
Market Mover: SKY FIELD $1.50 to $1.40

Zac Purton, Hong Kong's champion jockey for the 2019/20 season, picture Hong Kong Jockey Club

RACE 7 BIG PROFIT HANDICAP HK $967,000
Class 4 – Rating 60-40 - Turf ‘A’ Course – Distance 1400m – Track Good TF
Time: 1:21.10   Standard Time: 1:22.15   Course/Class Record: 1:20.80

Winner: SUMSTREETSUMWHERE (NZ 5yo g Highly Recommended – Street Siren) pays the believers, a 31-start-one-win horse until today but the way punters climbed into him it seemed an ominous sign. And he did not disappoint, second-up for a new stable he was very sharp out in centre-track when Blake Shinn produced him for his run wide out. Shinn took no risks, happy to be four and five-deep on the corner and out of trouble, the horse doing the rest. A second success for trainer David Hall on the day. This horse had won the Group 2 James & Annie Sarten Memorial at 1400m for trainer Stephen Marsh in New Zealand before heading to Hong Kong. 
Runner-up: SO WE JOY was produced late and he dashed home super again, the 133lb always a tougher task for the smart type today but as always he did not fail to deliver something good. Nine starts a win and four placings in his debut season and one John Moore will be sad to leave behind, he’s going to be a really handy horse next term. Class 3 would alleviate weight problems for the son of former Cox Plate winner So You Think.
Run Of The Race: SUMSTREETSUMWHERE showed them some disdain, never close to the inside fence but really dominant. 
Disappointment: ARMOR STAR started favourite and set the pace, but in the end paid the price for some hectic speed. A sitting duck for the ones coming off some cover. Vetted, substantial mucus in the trachea.
Comparison: Over a second under standard tells the tale, they really got motoring and did set it up for those off the pace to have something to give.
Market Mover: SUMSTREETSUMWHERE $7.90 to $4.00

RACE 8 CONTENTMENT HANDICAP HK $1,450,000
Class 3 – Rating 80-60 - Turf ‘A’ Course – Distance 1600m – Track Good TF
Time: 1:33.27   Standard Time: 1:34.65   Course/Class Record: 1:33.30

Winner: MR ALDAN (AUS 4yo g Jet Spur – Besame Mucho) did not offer a thing on yielding ground on June 7 and Tony Cruz must have been scratching his head a bit. But a fine bounce back a month ahead on a quick track, Zac Purton finding a nice spot sixth or seventh and one-off after working over from gate 12. Response was impressive when Purton asked the gelding to roll, he quickly put this field away in class record time to win his second of the season and career in Hong Kong. A bit of a mixed bag since arriving from Australia as a two-race winner ‘Hopes Eternal’ for John Zielke in Queensland. To a rating of the mid to high 70’s now he may find it a little tougher in the new season until he finds his range again but does seem improved.
Runner-up: THE ROCK had the run of the race in the trail and every chance to win it, just found one much better on the day. Third up in Hong Kong he has not disappointed in each run and will now get his chance to further acclimatise. Tough mark in Class 3 off just a Novice win in Great Britain.
Run Of The Race: CHARIZARD came from last to run a fast finishing fifth. Off record speed an exceptional run to make up so many lengths after chasing a hot pace throughout. Two horses bettered 23.00 seconds for each of the final three 400m splits of the race, this horse and winner MR ALDAN.
Disappointment: CORDYCEPS was dour late after looming to win it. In slick time some cop it and some find it a shade beyond them.
Comparison: Very quick obviously. Class record breaker.
Market Mover: ENTRUSTED $17.60 to $7.90
Bled: RACING LUCK

RACE 9 HONG KONG RACEHORSE OWNERS ASSOC TROPHY HANDICAP 
HK $967,004
Class 2 – Rating 105-80 - Turf ‘A’ Course – Distance 1400m – Track Good TF
Time: 1:20.78  Standard Time: 1:21.55   Course/Class Record: 1:20.29

Winner: SUPER OASIS (NZ 4yo g Rock N Pop – Not Sure) breaks through in Hong Kong in start nine, an overdue but not totally unexpected showing of form from the former duel Group 2 winner in New Zealand as ‘Surely Sacred’ when trained by Tony Pike, taking both the Auckland and Avondale Guineas. Jerry Chau’s 10lb claim again well to the fore, and he rode the gelding smartly , sitting off then pace from a nice low draw and presenting the horse at the right time. Interesting to see him so sharp in the drop from 1800m and 2000m back to the 1400m, a top training effort and another win for trainer Ricky Yiu in the race to the season’s premiership.
Runner-up: MONGOLIAN KING rattled home once into the clear and very good on the day. He seems a better horse for a few starts on the dirt track where he won back in April and his last three on the turf have been much sharper since that experience. He won four from six in Australia for Bjorn Baker when named ‘War Pig’.
Run Of The Race: MONGOLIAN KING home in 44.98 the last 800m very slick work. TRANSCENDENT caught the eye doing solid late work.
Disappointment: AMAZING CHOCOLATE wasn’t given too many favours in the run today and trapped deep, he was never able to find his rhythm and unleash the sprint he’s trademarked of late. 
Comparison: Quick time, leaders faded on their efforts as the swoopers arrived.
Market Mover: AMAZING CHOCOLATE $3.50 to $2.30, FANTASU $26.00 to $13.20

RACE 10 PINGWU SPARK HANDICAP HK $1,450,000
Class 3 – Rating 80-60 - Turf ‘A’ Course – Distance 1400m – Track Good TF
Time: 1:21.50   Standard Time: 1:21.85   Course/Class Record: 1:20.62

Winner: PRIVATE ROCKET (IRE 4yo g Dark Angel – Love In The Desert) ended a long season with victory, his first since Class 3 success in June 2019 when he was trained by John Moore. With Douglas Whyte this season, the former Kempton (GB) winner had finished top three in 12 previous starts this term but took a season’s low 112lb onto the track today with the luxury of Jerry Chau’s 10lb claim and that told the tale, a big plus in his corner. Nice draw, camped on the speed and won well under siege. Jerry won’t have the 10lb claim for long, smart rider tis boy.
Runner-up: ALCARI just wanted to drift up the track in the home straight and would have won it had he run straight. Gave Matthew Poon a difficult ride in stages over the final 600m. Nearly back-to-back wins in Class 3 after a withering finish to beat them here on June 27. Ideally weighted in the grade to win one early in the new season unless he spells.
Run Of The Race: At 180/1 MERRYGOWIN ran 21.58 the final 400m to come from near last and be beaten under two-lengths. It really was a terrific run considering the first three home were in the first five throughout. LOBO’S LEGEND was very sound under the topweight and one to follow with a weight ease next term.
Disappointment: HEZA BEAUTY wasn’t disappointing but disappointed in some racing joy today, Joao Moreira nearly landed on his backside after jumping and did a super job to hold on. A little too far back in this one after that mishap and difficult to make the ground up but overall a very good run considering.
Comparison: They walked and really got home hard here, just under standard with a number of horses breaking the 22.00 second barrier for the final 400m. 
Market Mover: CRAIG’S STAR $39.40 to $17.80, heza beauty $3.60 TO $2.60

RACE 11 ENTRAPMENT HANDICAP HK $1,450,000
Class 3 – Rating 80-60 - Turf ‘A’ Course – Distance 1200m – Track Good TF
Time: 1:08.93   Standard Time: 1:09.25   Course/Class Record: 1:08.31

Winner: GOOD LUCK FRIEND (NZ 3yo g Swiss Ace – Maravilla) arrived as an unraced horse at the beginning of the season, debuted in March and ends the term with four wins from six starts and a second to vault his way to 78 points. Just a wonderful advertisement for the Ready To Run concept, this horse bought by Ricky Yiu for $NZ90,000 and has already won HK $2.4 million in stakes. As is always the case early pace put him on the speed, sharing until taking command and fighting off all in sundry in the straight, and there were a few attackers. Now to the verge of Class 2 and far from finished winning. Joao ends the day with three winners.
Runner-up: SMART LEADER looked a good-thing beaten, pushed back at the vital stage when forward momentum needed and he flew home to take second money in what should have been the winners cheque. More a Happy Valley expert, he neds his season with consecutive second placings at Sha Tin for Tony Cruz. 
Run Of The Race: SMART LEADER exceptional, and one to paste n the black book is KEEP YOU WARM who is just a six-start veteran in Hong Kong without a win but a winner in Great Britain before arriving. Unlucky here, looking for runs that were not coming and finished off really nicely. Rider copped a fine and suspension looking for room. Rated 66 and he either wins in Class 3 or as soon as he may get a drop to Class 4. TRUST ME was also good late. 
Disappointment: WINNING BREW failed to jump with them today and that put the cat among the pigeons as the $2.20 favourite was in trouble very early. Purton picked a path closer nearing the turn and he saw fresh air off the bend but the job ahead was too great.
Comparison: A fairly decent tempo as they break 1:09 and dash along through the middle stages.
Market Mover: WINNING BREW $3.00 to $2.20
Fined and Suspended: Dylan Mo $15,000 and 9 Sept race meeting Happy Valley for careless riding at the 250m mark

 

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