Michael Chang saddled his first double since 22 February, 2018 when Winning Together and Golden Four went back-to-back in races six and seven at Sha Tin yesterday (Saturday, 11 January), and he went close to a hat-trick – and first treble since April 2014 – when Righteous Doctrine took second behind Bear Slam in race eight.
“It’s nice to get that double and I think my horse performed well for second – he was beaten by the better horse so no excuse,” Chang said.
Matthew Chadwick urged the willing Winning Together to success in section one of the Class 4 South Wall Handicap (1400m) to give the Chang runner his first win at the ninth ask. The handler bagged his seventh victory of the campaign thanks to Blake Shinn delivering Golden Four on a well-timed run in section two of the South Wall Handicap (1400m).
Bear Slam’s (132lb) victory over Righteous Doctrine (122lb) came in the afternoon’s trophy race, the Class 3 Lok Sin Tong 140th Anniversary Cup Handicap (1650m).
The Mizzen Mast five-year-old returned from more than two months without a run and made it two wins on the bounce over the course and distance, cruising off the turn under Joao Moreira and knuckling down for a strong run home. “He’s not very big and best kept fresh – he has a very good dirt pedigree,” trainer David Ferraris said.
Tony Piccone’s sound start to his first Hong Kong contract continued with a double. The Frenchman drove the Conghua-based Diamond Legend to a make-all win in the Class 5 Hau Wong Handicap (1600m), the second win of his stint and first for Tony Cruz, rewarding the handler’s support at the sixth time of asking.
Piccone followed up with a powerful drive from deep, forging down the centre of the all-weather track’s home straight on the pink-blinkered grey This One’s For You to snare the Class 4 Nam Kok Handicap (1650m).
The latter win sealed a brace for trainer Francis Lui who left the track with 27 wins on the board for the term, having earlier maintained his good form with Brilliant (118lb) in the opener, the Class 4 Carpenter Handicap (1200m). Derek Leung delivered the five-year-old on a strong closing run to edge out the well-regarded debutant Juneau Park (126lb).
Top-weight of 133lb failed to anchor the Tony Millard-trained Super Star, who landed his fifth win at his 10th start under a power-packed Silvestre de Sousa drive. The five-year-old Hong Kong International Sale graduate took the Class 3 Tak Ku Ling Handicap (1400m) by half a length.