Midweek racing from Hong Kong is at Happy Valley this Wednesday with the 8-race card getting underway at 11.15am. The feature race of the day is the class 4 Hong Kong Football Club Centenary Cup over 6 furlongs due off at 12.45pm.
My best bet (NAP) on the card is THE JOY OF GIVING who goes in race 1, The Class 5 Fa Hui Handicap over 1 mile 3 furlongs, due off at 11.15am.
The Michael Chang-trained 5-year-old was a winner when last sent out and is one of only two runners in the field who has been victorious in their last six outings. On that occasion it was Joao Moreira in the saddle who delivered the gelding his first win in Hong Kong and it is a positive to see the partnership remain intact again today.
As well as winning and showing courage to overhaul one of today’s rivals (Come on WongChoy) there was even more to like about that run as he was strong through the line and so in stepping back up to 11 furlongs this should see another bold effort over the extended trip.
In what should be a truly run race with the likes of the 1,6,7 and 11 all ensuring a decent tempo this should play nicely into the selection’s hands. Having previously finished second over course and distance earlier in the season when coming from off the pace, the gelding has a great chance to claim another win here today.
My next best bet (NB) on the card is DASHING DART in Race 3, The Class 5 Sham Shui Po Handicap over 1 mile ,due off at 12.15pm.
It has been over year since the Paul O’Sullivan 7-year-old went back to back in claiming his only two victories in Hong Kong but in dropping into class 5 company this season and with a respectable third placed finish when last out I expect him to be competitive again today.
In a race which looks like about half the field are likely to be pushing forward to be on the speed this should work out nicely for those coming from off the pace. With both wins to date having been achieved after being ridden cold from the gates I think its likely that connections will be keen to see Zac Purton drop the gelding out of gate 8 and take a position towards the back of the field.
Dashing Dart runs from a 6lb lower mark today than his last win and having shown signs of returning to that sort of form when last sent out, providing he has a bit of luck late on, it might well be win number 3 for the gelding.
My each-way selection (EW) on the card, HAPPY SPIRIT, runs in race 8, The Class 3 Tai Hang Tung Handicap over 1 mile, due off at 2.50pm.
With only 10lb separating top to bottom in the weights for today’s finale, this looks like being a pretty open race with some value to be had.
I have selected the Manfred Man-trained 7-year-old who appeals as he has a decent draw and, with Victor Wong claiming 7lb, he finds himself 22lb lower in the ratings than when he last won, albeit some time ago.
He didn’t run too badly when back from a short break last time out. On that occasion he was only beaten 4 lengths, and he should strip fitter for the run.
With the light-weight and in coming out of stall 3 I think it’s likely that Wong will push forward and take a prominent position in the run. He should get a good tow in the race behind the speed with the 1, 4 and 8 all likely to go forward, and from there the selection hopefully can record his fifth victory, and at very attractive odds.
Tim's Best Bets:
11.15am HAPPY VALLEY (Race 1)
THE JOY OF GIVING (NAP)
12.15pm HAPPY VALLEY (Race 3)
DASHING DART (NB)
2.50pm HAPPY VALLEY (Race 8)
HAPPY SPIRIT (EACH WAY)
BETTING ON HONG KONG RACING
Punters can bet into the Hong Kong pools online through Betfred.com .