OTB Race Previews & Odds
|Race Tracks||Time (EST)|
Race 1: #11 Coolceleb, #8Little Thunder, #4 Gracious Ryder, #3 Sam's Love
Race 2:: #2 Hidden Spirit, #11 Virtus Star, #6 Curling Luxury, #4 Sky Gem
Race 3: #3 Pearl Champion, #11 Demons Rock, #7 Thou Shall Sing, #1 Fearless Fire
Race 4: #3 Kings Shield, #2 Glorious Artist, #5 Raging Blitzkrieg, #1 Buddies
Race 5: #8 Striking Mr C, #7 Skyey Supreme, #2 Handsome Rebel, #3 Elite Boy
Race 6: #10 Super Power Man, #8 Good For You, #12 Victory In Hand, #3 Sunset Watch
Race 7: #3 Smiling City, #1 This One's For You, #2 Jade Fortune, #10 Party Everyday
Race 8: #2 Utopia Life, #10 Hall Of Champ, #5 California Concord, #3 Elite Patch
Race 9: #6 Gameplayer Times, #9 Enfolding, #1 Turin Redstar, #4 La Yakfi
#11 Coolceleb is a two-time course and distance who is capable of adding a third here. He has returned to a competitive mark and with even luck, from the gate, he can take a power of beating.
#8 Little Thunder is shooting for back-to-back wins. He remains in Class 4 which is suitable and Victor Wong's five pound claim ensure he gets in well at the weights.
#4 Gracious Ryder is consistent and should every chance to perform at his best from gate two.
#3 Sam's Love is a winner already this term and since then has been racing well. He might have another win in him before season's close.
#2 Hidden Spirit has gone to another level of late notching two consecutive wins on the dirt. He steps up to 1800m now which is of no concern as he has given every indication that he'll relish it and from gate one, he should get every chance to go on with it again.
#11 Virtus Star has placed in three out of his last four outings. He's closing in on his first win and if he can handle the dirt at his first attempt, he's in with a winning chance.
#6 Curling Luxury rattled home for second last start. He can go one better here from the ideal gate.
#4 Sky Gem is next best, though has more weight to bear this time.
#3 Pearl Champion won third-up last campaign and he looks well placed to do the same again after piecing together two nice fast-closing fourth-place efforts. He has drawn to get the right run and this contest appears to be his for the taking.
#11 Demons Rock finally scored that elusive win last start. He steps back into Class 4 which isn't ideal but still, he's racing well and garners plenty of respect.
#7 Thou Shall Sing has drawn awkwardly but does do his best racing over this course and distance. This is suitable.
#1 Fearless Fire gets a welcome drop to Class 4. Expect sharp improvement against weaker company.
#3 Kings Shield does his best racing on the dirt was a dominant course and distance winner at the back end of last season. He gets Zac Purton on for this and with even luck rates as the one to beat stepping up in trip.
#2 Glorious Artist has mixed his form since traveling to Korea for the KOR Group 1 Korea Cup but has tallied a course and distance score among these runs, though the rest have been unplaced. He has still got plenty of ability and with the right run he can figure here.
#5 Raging Blitzkrieg scored a deserved win two starts ago. He has drawn well and his consistency could reward him here.
#1 Buddies was utterly dominant last time out on the turf. He steps over to the dirt now but in his favor is the ten pound claim from Jerry Chau which remains.
Race 4 at Sha Tin Aw on Wednesday, May 27 - Post 8:15 AM
|8||Glorious Artist||15-1||Derek Leung
|7||Kings Shield||15-1||Zac Purton
|5||Mongolian King||13-2||Karis Teetan
|Y S Tsui|
|6||Raging Blitzkrieg||13-1||Chad Schofield
|2||Harmony Hero||15-2||Neil Callan
|3||Star Performance||11-2||Dylan Mo
|A S Cruz|
|K W Lui|
|4||Noble Steed||20-1||Anthony Hamelin
|K W Lui|
#8 Striking Mr C is the likely leader of this and is already, a two-time winner from four attempts this campaign. He can try the same again for Derek Leung who knows the horse well and if he makes his own luck once again, he is capable of pinching this.
#7 Skyey Supreme turned his form around to finish second last start. He has drawn awkwardly but just now, might be ready to piece it all together.
#2 Handsome Rebel is unlucky not to already be a winner.
#3 Elite Boy is a winner already this term. He gets in light with Jerry Chau's ten pound claim which suits.
#10 Super Power Man is looking for a hat-trick of wins. He's racing in supreme form at the minute for Chad Schofield and Manfred Man and if he position himself up on the pace early, then he's going to take a power of running down, if he does step up to Class 3.
#8 Good For You is the veteran of the field and did close nicely over this course and distance last start. His experience holds him good stead for this.
#12 Victory In Hand is consistent and with two wins under his belt this campaign, he warrants plenty of respect. He gets in light with the in-form Antoine Hamelin taking the reins.
Zac Purton hops on #3 Sunset Watch for the first time. This booking alone bears close watching and from gate two he's going to get every chance.
#3 Smiling City has been reasonably consistent across his career and appeared to show his best last start when flashing for third. Jerry Chau sticks aboard following that performance and takes a key ten pounds off his back and though he has drawn wide, he does rate as the hardest to beat.
#1 This One's For You rattled home to score last start. He has to contend with top weight duties this time but still, with a race run to suit he can make it back-to-back successes.
#2 Jade Fortune is consistent and has the draw to be competitive here.
#10 Party Everyday wasn't too bad last time out but he does appear once-paced.
#2 Utopia life scored a deserved win earlier this term and since then has held his condition well. Jerry Chau takes a key 10 pounds off his back and if he can offset the awkward gate, then he has a leading chance to take out this.
#10 Hall of Champ has shown ability across his short career and this contest, does appear suitable. Ben So hops aboard from gate two and these two bear close watching for David Hall.
#5 California Concord grabbed third on debut. He steps out again for Karis Teetan from a favorable draw.
#3 Elite Patch is next best.
#6 Gameplayer Times turned in an improved performance last start and if he can take another step forward here he's going to be fighting out the finish. The dirt clearly suits him and this contest is well within his grasp.
#9 Enfolding mixes his form but is a two-time course and distance winner this term. Zac Purton takes over and although his task is made difficult from gate 14, he still rates as a leading player.
#1 Turin Redstar receives a welcome drop back to Class 3. This is much easier and with even luck he can make his presence felt.
#4 La Yakfi is next best.
BY DAVID MORGAN - Zac Purton is hoping to make hay under the Sha Tin floodlights on Wednesday morning with Joao Moreira sitting out the all-weather track fixture due to a riding suspension.
The star jockeys are inseparable on 123 wins for the season in a gripping tussle for the Hong Kong premiership. Purton has a full book of nine rides, and, with a 12% win strike rate on the dirt track this term against the absent Moreira's 24%, he is hoping to do enough to edge into an outright lead.
"It's a good opportunity to do that, if I can," the reigning champ said. "The races on the dirt are never easy to win, especially at the night meetings but hopefully a couple can pop up for me and help me. It would be nice to get something if I could."
Purton and Moreira have been neck and neck on the same win total through the past two meetings, and, after carving up the meat of the weekend action with four wins apiece, Purton admitted to some frustration that his multi-win bounty wasn't enough to shake off his rival.
"You ride four winners but you walk home feeling a little bit flat," he said. "If you'd ridden four and he'd ridden none, you'd walk home with a bit of a spring in your step. But it's competitive and that's the way it should be.
"We did a similar thing a couple of seasons back when we went bang for bang throughout one of the meetings, so we've been there and done it before, so hopefully it's the same end result again."
The three-time champion is set to partner Kings Shield (126 lbs) in the morning's quality event, the Class 2 Egret Handicap (1650m).
The Frankie Lor-trained galloper was impressive when winning at the course and distance last June and has only attempted 1650m on the dirt track once in five outings since. That April 1 effort brought a solid second to the re-opposing Mongolian King (125 lbs) and Purton now climbs aboard for the first time.
"He did win impressively on the dirt and I thought his run three starts back was pretty good, he'd had a bit of a break and come back; he did a little bit of work but was still there at the furlong, so he's had that run and he'll be better for it. He should be a good chance," Purton said.
Lor is pleased to have the Australian aboard the British import, a winner on Tapeta and Polytrack in England and smart enough to place fifth in the Group 1 St James's Palace Stakes (1594m) and sixth in the Group 1 Poule d'Essai des Poulains (1600m) as a 3-year-old.
"He's come into form so he's got a good chance and having Zac Purton is always a positive," Lor said. "The last time he ran at 1650 meters, it was only his third start this season and he wasn't fully fit so this time he should be better."
And the handler could look at overseas assignments next term if the Scat Daddy 5-year-old can make forward strides.
"Korea or Dubai could be an option in the future because there aren't many opportunities on the dirt in Hong Kong - maybe we'll look at Dubai next year," he said.
Lor also has dirt track specialist Glorious Artist (128 lbs) in the line-up. The bay, the mount of Derek Leung, returned from a solid fourth in the KOR Group 1 Korea Cup (1800m) in Seoul to win at the course and distance in December and heads in off a decent turf outing at Happy Valley earlier this month.
"Last time he ran well - usually when he's on the turf he doesn't go as well, he's a lot better on the dirt but I still thought he ran a good race. He has already won this season and he's good on this surface - he's in good form."
The Lor pair will face six others in the contest, including the Me Tsui-trained Mongolian King who bids for back-to-back wins under Karis Teetan.
"The horse is in good form and Me Tsui's horses always do well on the dirt. We just need a good run and that strong finish he showed last time," the Mauritian said.
"He trialed well last week and of course his win last time was very good. I thought the second horse (Kings Shield) was gone and we wouldn't catch him but then I felt that my horse was only just starting to get build-up - he quickened up well to win a very good race."
Mongolian King will break from gate four and Teetan is hoping for a similar race-shape to the one that set up his length-and-a-quarter win from gate five.
"I think we'll get a similar trip to last time but he does have more weight to carry. The way he won, he has to be a chance again but a lot will depend on the speed again. You'd think the speed should be on with Buddies in there," he said.
The top-rated Buddies (131 lbs) was third to Mongolian King in the aforementioned race and followed up with a turf win under apprentice Jerry Chau. The John Moore-trained 4-year-old will once again have the benefit of Lau's 10 lb claim as he seeks a fourth win on the surface.
Raging Blitzkrieg (125 lbs), Star Performance (121 lbs), Cordyceps (119 lbs) and Noble Steed (118 lbs) complete the line-up.
The Wednesday morning sport starts at 6:45 a.m. ET / 3:45 a.m. with section three of the Class 4 Shearwater Handicap (1200m).