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Doubles for Lor, Lui and Moreira

Alexis Badel guaranteed his place in the LONGINES International Jockeys’ Championship at Happy Valley on Wednesday, 8 December, by driving Cheerful Days from last-to-first to snare the Class 3 Inverleith Park Handicap (1650m) for Francis Lui at Happy Valley on Wednesday night.

“That’s very cool, I knew I was in good form and I had the momentum, so it’s good to be ride in the competition (IJC) again and I am looking forward to it - it’s great,” the Frenchman said.

Badel, with 19 wins for the season, and Ho, the leading home-grown Hong Kong rider with 16 victories, join defending IJC champion Zac Purton, 2019/20 Hong Kong champion Joao Moreira, Britons Ryan Moore, Tom Marquand and Hollie Doyle, Frenchman Mickael Barzalona, Japan’s Yuga Kawada, New Zealand’s James McDonald and Australian Damian Lane in the HK$800,000 challenge.

Moreira and Frankie Lor combined with We The South, who again demonstrated a devastating affinity with the city circuit’s speed course with his sixth triumph over five furlongs – a two-length victory in the Class 3 Colinton Handicap (1000m).

“He likes it here over 1000 metres,” Lor said. “The track suits him and he seems to enjoy it.”
Lor celebrated a double – and his fifth winner from 11 starters – when Flaming Passion launched late to claim the first section of the Class 4 Murrayfield Handicap (1200m) for Matthew Chadwick.

The win left Lor with 23 victories for the campaign.

David Hall and Purton continued a productive liaison when the pair combined for a third win in two meetings when Yee Cheong Warrior snared the first section of the Class 4 Stockbridge Handicap (1650m).

“He ticked a lot of boxes tonight – the jockey and the barrier (gate one) - he had everything going for him tonight and he got the job done,” Hall said. “He’s rated well enough (45) that he can do it again.”

Riding in supreme form, Purton quickly notched a double when he piloted Francis Lui’s Run The Table from barrier 12 to one off the fence in fourth place before claiming the Class 5 Myreside Handicap (1650m).

Luke Ferraris credited his father David for Charizard’s slender victory in the Class 4 St Andrew’s Challenge Quaich Handicap (1650m) after the seven-year-old defied race-favourite Loyal Baby under Joao Moreira by a short head.

“All credit to Dad, he’s freshened him up really well. The horse is difficult to train. You’ve got to keep him fresh while keeping him fit without making him too flat – so, it’s a real balancing act,” Luke Ferraris said, noting the unique challenge of Hong Kong racing.

“Winning makes it all the more enjoyable, but it is one of the toughest jurisdictions to do well in. I’m pretty pleased at the way things are going. You always hope things could be better, but it’s nice to get a win.”

Hong Kong racing continues at Sha Tin on Sunday.

Happy Valley, picture Hong Kong Jockey Club

            
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