John Moore is hoping Beauty Generation is back at the top of his game as the seven-year-old bids for a record-equalling third success in the Longines Hong Kong Mile at Sha Tin on Sunday.
His air of invincibility has been diminished by two odds-on reverses in Group Two company recently – but that has not dented stable confidence heading into the weekend.
And seven-time champion trainer Moore was in an upbeat mood after watching the world’s top-rated miler work on Thursday morning.
He said: “We’ve done a few other things in the stable, which I sat down and discussed with the stable staff – routine things that we could implement to make sure that there was nothing left to chance. We’ve done all we can.
“We’ve found nothing. He’s a very sound horse. No excuses now. He’s not giving away lots of weight, so we’re looking forward to a big run.
“He’s drawn gate five and that gives him the opportunity to gather speed and let Ka Ying Star go to the front. In all probability he’ll be racing outside the leader.
“Mission accomplished, with respect to his work. Now we go back to level weights and he’s definitely the one to beat.
“No doubt Ka Ying Star will go forward and take him on, but we’ve done all that we need to do to get Beauty Generation back to where he was last season.”
While full of hope, Moore has maximum respect for the threat posed by Japanese raider Indy Champ, a dual Group One winner this year, including when defeating Almond Eye in the Yasuda Kinen.
Moore said: “Indy Champ has won the two big Group Ones in Japan this year, so our work is going to be cut out if he brings his A-game to Hong Kong.
“We do have hometown advantage, but we have to respect the Japanese because they’re a force to be reckoned with anywhere in the world, not only in Hong Kong.”