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“Fat, raw, up behind but quality”: That is the page note for Lot 158 in Mark Richards’ carefully filed 2014 Arqana Deauville August Yearling Sale catalogue.
The young Shamardal colt it refers to had arrived at the sale ground later than most from its birthplace, Gestut Wittekindshof in Sauerland, Germany, for a destiny-shaping walk around the auction ring.
Trainer John Moore believes that Eagle Way is the pick of his four runners in the Group 3 Queen Mother Memorial Cup Handicap (2400m) at Sha Tin on Sunday (30 April), but jockey Zac Purton remains confident that Beauty Generation can once again conquer his stablemate in the staying feature.
Beauty Generation won the main lead-up, the Class 2 Jinbao Street Handicap (2200m) on 9 April, scoring a gritty short-head victory over Eagle Way. This was after both horses ran behind Rapper Dragon in the BMW Hong Kong Derby (2000m), finishing third and sixth respectively.
Gianluca Bietolini, the Italian trainer based in France, is hoping for what might well be tagged as a second miracle with talented four-year-old Dicton in Sunday’s HK$20 million G1 Audemars Piguet QE II Cup (2000m).
Bietolini’s astute decision to secure Dicton from a claiming race, in France, for little more than €23,000 has been well documented. But the man himself is admirably modest enough to play down the purchase.
Aerovelocity remained on-course for his career swansong in the G1Chairman’s Sprint Prize (1200m) a week on Sunday after satisfying connections in a 1200m all-weather barrier trial at Sha Tin this morning.
The days of dominating such exercises from the front with bounding aplomb are now behind the eight-year-old and jockey Zac Purton was content to track fellow Chairman’s Sprint Prize entrant Blizzard before rolling past in the closing stages to take second as another galloper with that G1 target in his sights, Thewizardofoz, finished ahead. The veteran crossed the line half a length second.
Werther whisked through the mist at Sha Tin this morning with a business-like final gallop ahead of Sunday’s HK$20 million Audemars Piguet Queen Elizabeth II Cup (2000m) that reinforced John Moore’s opinion that last year’s winner is in the right zone to repeat the feat.
The trainer watched from beyond the winning post as the blinkered bay moved with assured strength down the turf home straight to finish on top of his companion, one-time smart sprinter Leading City: “The best lead horse you could wish for,” according to Moore.
In Sunday’s (30 April) HK$20 million G1 Audemars Piguet Queen Elizabeth II Cup, The United States will fly the red, white and blue one last time before he takes up stud duties.
But it will not be the Star-Spangled Banner adorning the flagpole; instead, the strapping chestnut – who has never stepped foot on American soil – will represent the Union Jack and the Southern Cross of his adopted home Australia, where he has raced since he was purchased out of Coolmore’s Irish base in 2013.
Trainer Tony Millard said the racing game was “full of swings and roundabouts” after scoring a double with Atomic Blast and Golden Sleep at Happy Valley on Wednesday night (26 April).
Millard won the opening Class 5 Gwangju Handicap (1650m) with quirky galloper Atomic Blast (123lb), partnered by Sam Clipperton.
「肥胖，稚嫩，後庄高但有質素。」這是黎卓時小心珍藏的2014年法國多維爾八月週歲馬拍賣會目錄第158號拍賣馬的注腳。該匹Shamardal的雄性子嗣來自德國Sauerland的Gestut Wittekindshof – 牠的出生地，而牠在拍賣場出場的時刻比大部分拍賣馬要晚，在拍賣亮相圈裏面繞圈，等待命運的決定。