Size to close gap on Lor at Sha Tin

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Size to close gap on Lor at Sha Tin

Luke Middlebrook: Hong Kong champion trainer contender Frankie Lor still maintains his lead on his opposition, however, his former boss, John Size, reduced the margin to two on Wednesday night while also creating racing history by bringing up his 1400th Hong Kong win.

Size joins Australian compatriot and all-time wins record-holder John Moore (1,735 wins) as the only horsemen to saddle 1,400 or more winners in Hong Kong, and on Sunday he looks poised to further grace the winner’s enclosure and wrestle the lead off Lor.

In the highest-rated race on the 10-race card, the Class 2 1600m Handicap (Race 3), Size sends out two runners, quality four-year-old Running Glory, who aims for a hat-trick of wins, and Beauty Fit, who should relish switch back to turf after two all-weather runs.

Running Glory continues to rise to the occasion and now boasts a solid record of four wins and a third from a total of seven starts.

Two starts ago, Running Glory won smartly at his first try over the mile then took to 1800m last start which was also unknown, however he took it in his stride as he let down with his swift trademark turn-of-foot to win well.

Running Glory holds his form with a typical good trial but will have to defy the rise to Class 2 on Sunday as he goes up against some handy types, however his untapped upside should see him measure up.

The best conditioner of young horses in Hong Kong, Size produces newcomer Beauty Tycoon later on the card in the Class 4 1200m Handicap (Race 6).

The three-year-old Price Bloodstock purchase makes his racecourse debut off the back of a total of four public barrier trials, one in Australia under the name Deepak and a subsequent three trials since his Hong Kong arrival.

Taking out his Australian trial in good manner by three lengths ahead of honest three-year-old Arran Bay, who has two wins and three placings from six starts, including a third in a $130k BM70 Handicap at Flemington Racecourse, Beauty Tycoon has continued to thrive in Hong Kong, looking progressive in each and every hit out.

With Joao Moreira on the bench due to suspension this week, Vagner Borges picks up the ride on Beauty Tycoon and will guide the son of Written Tycoon from barrier No 3. Size has found a weak Class 4 contest for his up-and-comer, in which he looks good enough to win straight up.

 

 

Race-by-Race Previews

Race 1: Telecom Missile well-placed and looks a chance in race like this from his nice, low draw where he can prove hard to hold out late. Takingufurther drops down in grade and start following. Vector best run to date was last start and appears to be improving and barrier No 1 give him every chance to go on with it. One Step Ahead showed no interest last start, forget the run and go on prior good form. Alloy Star generally gets back in the running but dashes strongly home, respect with Purton in the saddle first-up.

Race 2: Cheery racing well with excellent sectional time rankings and he simply had no luck in running last start and can improve big-time. Beauty Spirit old-timer who has been knocking on the door and a win won’t surprise anyone as he appears to get the gun from the low draw. Kung Fu Tea well supported last start and won accordingly and he gets every chance to score a hat-trick here. Dragon Pride racing well with good sectional time rankings recently. Free Foal last start winner who remains in the same grade.

Race 3: Running Glory nice four-year-old with a good chance to score a hat-trick of wins here as he rises to Class 2 on the light weight. The small field will make it a tactical battle, however, so that is the query given his get back, run on style. C P Brave ran on strongly in recent trial and form is good. From his low draw, he looks the next-best winning chance. Beauty Fit has a better chance on this surface and look for improvement. Beluga goes well first-up from a break and he is effective in slowly run races at this trip. Charity Grace rising in class and meets better quality horses but can measure up.

Race 4: Amigos Giggle looks ready to run a big race in Class 5 and he is racing well after a stable change from Chang to Fownes. Mission Smart looks overdue for a win and enters this race in good form, he just needs some luck from a wide alley. Ernest Feeling second start in this grade after dropping in class and could improve with Purton back in the saddle. Dragon Baby second start in this grade after dropping in class and could improve. Multiple Star racing well with good sectional time rankings recently and he will make a late bid.

Race 5: Jazz Steed caught the eye last start when running home well but he has drawn well low here to map closer and can be hard to beat from there. Utopia Life appears to be very well suited by the track and distance of this race and he can improve. Fiery Diamond last run was better than it reads, when used up on the lead under fast splits, and do not dismiss with Purton in the saddle. Touch Faith last start winner who rises in class but he may be able to measure up. Smart Folks showed good speed to lead last start and gave a good sight.

Race 6: Beauty Tycoon newcomer who looks a winning chance in this race after trialling very well on several occasions. From his low draw, and up against moderate opposition, he looks primed to win first-up. August Moon easy last start winner who remains in the same grade and can go close again with some luck from the wide gate. Woodfire Bro showed no interest last start, forget the run and expect improvement to come with Purton taking the ride. Sunshine Legendary resuming from a break and the recent trial was okay. Fighting Star best run to date was last start and appears to be improving.

Race 7: Fun N Glory had genuine excuses last start and can improve in this race. Sparky Star looks overdue for a win and enters this race in good form, he will be closing off hard and fast late. Snowalot caught the eye flashing home late from a wide draw last start, nice effort and he can improve further coming into a lower draw. Courageous Knight had genuine excuses last start and consider again from the low draw. Peak To Peak can upset some more fancied rivals on best form but he has had plenty of chances lately.

Race 8: Toronado Phantom generally gets back in the running but dashes strongly home, he may relish the AWT for the first time and looks well-placed here with strong Happy Valley form. Everyone’s Victory nice horse who is a model of consistency and looks a chance to score a first-up win. Beauty Champ recent barrier trial was a big improvement, suggesting a good run can be expected. Harmony Spirit resuming from a break and the recent trial was okay.

Race 9: A very open race here. Setanta was eased early before catching the eye late when first-up over 1200m last start. The rise in distance suits and he appears to get a great run just off the speed here and might be hard to hold out late. Sauvestre nice horse who is a model of consistency and looks a chance again. Keefy showed good speed to lead last start and gave a good sight – he can take further improvement at his second local start here. Master Hero resuming from a break and recent trial was very good. Super Ten last start winner who remains in the same grade – he will give a sight here.

Race 10: Solid Impact last run suggested a win was very near when a good second place first-up. He can go one place better second-up. Flying Season every chance last start, when a beaten odds-on favourite, but still ran a good race and the rise to 1200m might be ideal here. Beauty Mission every chance last start but still ran a good race and he gets another chance to atone. California Concord goes well second-up from a break and should be respected from the low draw. Brilliant Way had excuses last start and forget the run, chance to improve on prior form.

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