By News Team
3rd April 2020
Racing fans are in for a real treat on Sunday morning as Sha Tin hosts a fantastic 10-race card, with two Group 2s, the Chairman’s Trophy and Sprint Cup, taking centre stage. Here is our preview of both races from Hong Kong.
Beauty can show he’s the horse of a Generation
Punters will need to set their alarms on Sunday morning with the day’s opening Group 2 kicking off at 6:45 am with the Chairman’s Trophy. The betting suggests this is a straight match-up between two of Hong Kong’s most talented older horses in Waikuku and BEAUTY GENERATION.
Waikuku, formerly trained in Ireland by John Oxx, had often come up short when taking on the best in HK, but having won the Group 2 Jockey Club Mile in November, he went one better last time when victorious in the Stewards’ Cup – his first Grade 1 success. That win came after he was touched off in the Hong Kong Mile, clearly showing that John Size’s inmate has improved this season.
Though the margin was only a neck over Beauty Generation over course and distance last time, he was probably value for more than that and he is definitely the one they’ve all got to beat. It’s unsurprising then, that’s he’s just 8/11 for a second consecutive Grade 1 here.
He’ll be tough to pass, but preference is for Beauty Generation who can make it a remarkable nine Grade 1 victories. Considering he won 10 races in a row spanning three seasons, the seven-year-old’s 2019-20 campaign hasn’t lived up to those heights. Since winning the Group 3 Celebration Cup in October, John Moore’s gelding hadn’t been on his A-game with four consecutive defeats. However, different tactics seemed to work a treat last time as he took the Queen’s Silver Jubilee Cup over seven furlongs.
Granted the fact both his successes this season have come over that distance and that he’s lost all four times he’s raced over a mile is a concern, but if he can show anything near his best form, he should be far too good for this lot. Back Hong Kong’s superstar to shine once again at 7/4.
Hot King Prawn to sizzle in Sprint Cup
It could be one winner each for the two leading jockeys in Hong Kong because everything looks in place for a big run from HOT KING PRAWN in the Sprint Cup (9:10 am).
The mount of Hong Kong jockeys’ title leader Joao Moreira, the five-year-old has become one of the most consistent performers in the territory. In 16 starts in Hong Kong, the son of Denman has only finished out of the first three once, winning on ten occasions.
Having reeled off four consecutive wins, including the Group 2 Jockey Club Sprint in November 2018, big things were expected of Size’s inmate at the top table, but he didn’t quite make the step up as was hoped. It was as if he ran badly and was very unlucky to not win this season’s Hong Kong Sprint, where he was beaten by just a neck by Beat The Clock under Moreira. Two further solid runs in Group 1s followed before he was given a confidence booster in a handicap at Sha Tin last month.
That should have put him spot-on for this and although favourite Aethero receives weight from the whole field, Hot King Prawn can confirm his status as one of HK’s best sprinters at 2/1.