Our correspondent looks for value outside of mounts ridden by Zac Purton and Joao Moreira as racing returns to Happy Valley in Hong Kong. Everbrave, Cordyceps, and Jumbo Prize shape as competitive bets in the eight-race card.
Photos by LeeMingDonald
Trainer Caspar Fownes has demonstrated success while giving his horses extended breaks without sending them to the spelling paddocks. These horses are then brought back to the races in top racing condition. This ‘Fownes Spelling` training pattern has worked well in at least half a dozen cases this season as we have seen with the wins from Perfect Glory, Perfect to Play, E Master (twice), Chaparral Star, and Happy Sound. An additional half a dozen horses that have gone through ‘Fownes Spelling` (Formula Galore, Rivet, Limitless, Best Effort, Absolucool, and Friend of Kay Ying) and have come back to the races and finished less than half a length behind in second place. Snap Fit in the third race and Bigwood in the sixth race both have been given the ‘Fownes Spelling` treatment and we will be watching both these horses with interest.
Third Race - # 2) Everbrave finished on very well and gained more than four lengths when he won by three quarters of a length with jockey Aldo Domeyer over the 1000-meter sprint. Snap Fit won his maiden start over the same course and distance on the 23rd of January and has since exhibited the ‘Fownes Spelling` pattern. Starting a week after that, Snap Fit did not trot or gallop for two months. In those two months, Snap Fit was seen swimming at Sha Tin and Conghua. Snap Fit resumed trotting and galloping in April and has had two barrier trials also. While we will watch Snap Fit with interest, we expect that Everbrave will relish the fast tempo that will be set up by The Abraxas and Lamarosa and will be able to carry the additional five pounds to victory over Snap Fit and Hong Kong Win.
Sixth Race - # 4) Cordyceps has run all his eleven runs and all his seven lifetime barrier trials at Sha Tin and comes to Happy Valley for the first time. In his last run, he was not able to get cover for most of the trip nor was he able to hit the front from barrier 9. Now with Barrier 2, Cordyceps will try and make a start to finish affair of this race. He will be challenged by Perfect Pair for the lead and also for the final placing. Bigwood is another horse that exhibits the ‘Fownes Spelling` pattern. Bigwood ran on the 23rd of January and was not reported either swimming, trotting, galloping or barrier trialing till the 18th of March. Bigwood has squeezed in two quick barrier trials in less than two weeks and should run well.
Seventh Race - # 11Jumbo Prize won well over the same course and distance two weeks ago and should continue to improve. We expect this three-year-old gelding to extend his winning streak. His rider Umberto Rispoli may carry a pound overweight. Smart Leader is consistent and had not finished worse than third in his last four starts and we expect this Hong Kong maiden to run a good race tomorrow.
Here are the selections for the card
These selections are based on the Race Card available at the time of writing and do not factor in any standby horses that are promoted. While considering the tips above, please pay attention to the names of the horses – the number of a horse that is withdrawn will be assigned to the promoted standby horse.