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JOCKEY OF THE MEETING

WINNER: THE ZAC ATTACK

Not, as some touted, “A treble for Prebble”, but more of another Zac Attack. After a threesome on Wednesday, Zac Purton drove home another treble today including winning The Bauhinia Trophy aboard Little Bridge and underlined the fact that he has fast-become very popular with the local public. Yes, he might not be the most popular rider in the jockeys’ room, but most people are an acquired taste and we like The Zac Attack. He’s confident, he shows his confidence and he delivers.

   

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THE TRAINERS AWARD OF THE DAY

WINNER: “JUNGLE JOHN” MOORE

The Moore stable saddled up four winners today.

See what happens when “Jungle John” and Georgie boy leave town for a few days?

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THE APRIL FOOL’S DAY AWARD

WINNER: SACRED KINGDOM

Maybe after all these starts, it was fed up and just wanted to go somewhere and lie down in a green pasture and chase a few frisky fillies. Yes, it was Champion sprinter Sacred Kingdom’s last start in Hong Kong, it was The Bauhinia Sprint over 1000 metres and he seemed to know it: He jumped when the gates were opened, jockey Gerard Mosse banged his head on the top of the barrier and Sacred Kingdom just watched the others run their arses off . Apart from the win of Little Bridge- and which went off at 7 to 1- miler New Vision coming in to be the second favourite, we won’t be taking this race too seriously. It was all too bloody weird- even for us.

 

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THE DR. JECKYL AND MR.HYDE AWARD

WINNER: HOWARD “THE DUCK” CHENG

When he’s bad, he’s bloody horrible and when he’s good, he’s really not too bad- and, today, Hong Kong got to see both sides of “The Duckman” at Shatin and in two consecutive races. It was “Face/Off” time.

In Race 1, we had no idea what he was doing as he took his mount- Rocket And Gold- to the front and then scooted off in the 2000 metre race as if it was a 1000 metre sprint or as if he needed to hit the can in double-quick time. He then, put the brakes on the horse for a second, then pushed it again like a kid playing with the gears of a brand new car. Being a horse and not a Ferrari or a Lamborghini, the stayer Rocket And Gold, started to splutter and only helped in setting the race up for anything and everything coming off the pace. In the very next race, Howard “The Duck” must have had his meds and, this time, used some grey matter, He paced his ride-the somewhat ironically-named Speedy- very well, didn’t try and ride it as if he was back riding in a 1000 metre sprint and won the race after a short tussle with Mark Du Plessis on Gorgeous Life. Yes, a Duck’s life is no yolk.

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THE “YOU’RE FIRED!” AWARD

WINNER: DOUGLAS WHYTE AKA “THE DURBAN TURBAN”

After being beaten on Good Hong Kong, owned by the fung-shui riddled and fung-shui paranoid horse owner- John “Bad Ba Ba” Yuen, we have to wonder if “The Durban Turban” will retain the ride. As we all know by now, Owner “Bad Ba Ba” doesn’t like to see his horses lose and one also has to wonder if, after the minor placings it has racked up for trainer Danny Shum, Good Hong Kong will be moving stables. Nothing surprises us anymore as to what John Yuen will do next, but- and we know that he’ll hate to hear this- but we have to also wonder if this new horse is actually any good? To be beaten by Sammy’s Falcon- a very good ride by Tye Angland- and just managing to hold out the very average Travel Guide to retain its second placing, is not exactly the makings of a champion. Like the city itself and what’s going on in Hong Kong with corrupt property tycoons and knuckleheaded politicians, instead of a champ, Yuen just might have a chump on his hands. Chumps attract chumps.

RIDE OF THE DAY

LITTLE TIMMY CLARK ON SEA DIAMOND

Despite drawn barrier 13, despite the horse being as green as penis envy, “The Hobbit” had Sea Diamond out fast and, for a brief moment, almost looked as if it might be caught four-wide and plod on for a place. But Little Tim Clark, used his manly voice and guile to rate the horse perfectly, settle it down, then take it wide, give it a crack with his right hand, change the whip into his left hand, straighten out this new horse for The Hong Kong Golf Club Syndicate that has raced horses with the Moore family since the days of Methuselah has a very good new horse on their hands.

On another subject, we hear that Darren Beadman is progressing well and eve if he does take longer than expected to return to the saddle, “”Jungle John” can do far worse than to turn to “The Hobbit” to ride more of his horses. Without naming names, Little Timmy Clark can be far stronger in a finish than quite a few more established jockeys riding in Hong Kong.

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THE “ADIEU, MES AMIS” AND “I CAN NOW STOP RIDING ZEE GOATS, BAY-BAY!” AWARD

WINNER: GERARD “THE PARROT” MOSSE

We have no idea what Mosse is planning for his future: A short riding stint on some Group 1 fillies and then Assistant Trainer to Alain de Royer Dupre?

Before then, perhaps a flying trip Down Under to ride Americain for David Hayes in the BMW Classic?

And then? Back to Hong Kong or a longer stay in France to pursue a new career as a trainer?

All we know, is that he bowed out in style on Sunday at Shatin with a win aboard the Francis Lui-trained The Only Kid.

“The Parrot” and highly-accomplished swordsman has a unique relationship with this horse and seems to be the only jockey who can win on it.

He also has a great relationship with quite a few horses in Lui’s yard- not exactly a great trainer- so much so that if we didn’t know better, we might even think that the tail was wagging the dog.

Know what we mean?

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THE “MOORE THE MERRIER” AWARD

WINNER: “JUNGLE JOHN” MOORE

“Shuddup, Georgie, I’m finking.”

With six runners in the nine-horse field, “trainer Jungle John” Moore had a monopoly on The Chairman’s Trophy.

But which one? Many thought it was between Moore’s amazing old-stager Able One and Moore’s Admiration to stop the new kid on the block- Glorious Days- in its track.

For a long time, it looked as if Jeff Lloyd on Moore’s Able One had sneaked it but then came Brett Prebble on Moore’s Admiration to win over Douglas Whyte, which, surprisingly, was placed three wide with no cover.

“Not now, Georgie, I’m still thinking.”

What happened? Had there been some contact? The “Enquiry” sign went up and we watched the head-on film where Prebble and Whyte and their horses came into contact.

And then? Many pontificated, many pondered and, in the end, nothing happened and Moore’s Admiration kept the race.

Our thoughts: It was a big run by Glorious Days and the best ride won the race.

One trainer having six horses in a nine-horse race is always going to be seen as an “unfair advantage.”

More to the point, it really dilutes the efforts of a winner from his stable.

“Dad? Are you playing pocket billiards?” “Shuddup, Georgie, I’m thinking.”

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THE “CONSPICUOUS BY HIS ABSENCE” AWARD

DAVID “DARTH VADER” FERRARIS.

Tsk, “Darth” had no runners today.

It was a lovely day and we hear he went to the beach to get some fresh air.