Hong Kong Champions & Chater Cup

THE Hong Kong Champions & Chater Cup is a group one at Sha Tin, held annually in May or June.

The race is the final leg of the Hong Kong Triple Crown.

Raced over the staying distance of 2400m, the Champions & Chater Cup is one of the longest-standing races in Hong Kong and it’s also one of the most important.

It’s the third leg of the Triple Crown, following the Steward’s Cup and Hong Kong Gold Cup. The HK Triple Crown has been won only once, by River Verdon in 1994, but there’s some talented runners that could recreate history this year.

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Hong Kong Champions & Chater history

The first running of the Champions & Chater Cup came in 1870 when the race was known as “The Champions Stakes”.

It would later become the Champions & Chater Cup, named in honour of Sir Paul Chater – a prominent Hong Kong businessman and owner.

One of the more popular betting races in Hong Kong, it attracts special attention because it’s the final leg of the Triple Crown, but that has been achieved only once.

Tony Cruz has dominated the race in recent history with wins from 2013-2016. These wins came with both Blazing Speed, California Memory and Helene Super Star, but John Moore is still the most successful trainer this century.

Moore scored with Werther in 2017, Mighty High in 2011 and three-time winner Viva Pataca (2009, 2007, 2006). He holds the record with Ivan Allan, who trained five consecutive winners of the race and he did it with four individual winners.

Australian or Australian-based jockeys have a good record in the Champions & Chater Cup with Hugh Bowman winning in 2017 with Werther and Darren Beadman winning in 2011 with Mighty High.

Shane Dye, Brett Prebble and Australian-based Robbie Fradd are also past winners of the Sha Tin feature.

2018 Hong Kong Champions & Chater Cup odds

The odds for the 2018 Champions & Chater Cup haven’t been released by bookmakers yet, but we will update this list when they become available.

Recent Champions & Chater Cup results

2017: Werther established itself as the premier staying thoroughbred in Hong Kong when taking out the 2017 Champions & Chater Cup. The former New Zealand and Australian runner was simply brilliant with Hugh Bowman in the saddle and although its winning time wasn’t overly impressive, Werther improved nicely after running third in 2016 and punters left Sha Tin extremely happy.

2016: Blazing Speed wasn’t one of the fancied runners in the field at around $8, but Tony Cruz was confident it could upset $1.70 favourite and 2017 winner Werther. The seven-year-old showed its blazing speed and it was too good for the opposition, which included horses bred from Ireland and New Zealand. Blazing Speed ran the quickest time (2:26.18) since Packing Winner in 2008.

2015: Tony Cruz yet again got the better of John Moore when Helene Super Star defeated Dominant and Helene Happy Star by a short head, long neck. The Moore-trained duo tried hard, but couldn’t defeat the $6.70 chance in the run to the line. 2016 winner Blazing Speed finishing in fourth for Tony Cruz and the first four positions were filled by the first four in the betting.

2014: Blazing Speed won the first of two Champion & Chater Cup wins in 2014. The Cruz-trained five-year-old held off Military Attack by a head in one of the closest finishes in the races’ history. Under a length covered the first four home, which also included Endowing and 2013 winner California Memory. The win was also the first of two for jockey Neil Callan.

2013: California Memory was the first of four consecutive wins for trainer Tony Cruz and is was one of the more impressive. The seven-year-old was well-fancied in the betting and it gave punters plenty of reason to cheer. The win came over the popular Willie Cazals, with Dominant finishing a further half-length back in third. Quality thoroughbreds Thumbs Up and Fay Fay finished further down the field.

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Past Champions & Chater Cup winners list

2017 – Werther
2016 – Blazing Speed
2015 – Helene Super Star
2014 – Blazing Speed
2013 – California Memory
2012 – Liberator
2011 – Mighty High
2010 – Mr Medici
2009 – Viva Pataca
2008 – Packing Winner
2007 – Viva Pataca
2006 – Viva Pataca
2005 – Vengeance of Rain
2004 – Super Kid
2003 – Precision
2002 – Cheers Hong Kong
2001 – Oriental Express
2000 – Housemaster
1999 – Oriental Express
1998 – Indigenous
1997 – Indigenous

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