Best Hong Kong International day jockeys to bet on

HONG KONG International day is one of the biggest race meetings in the world and it pays to know which jockeys to follow.

Held every December, International day includes four group one races (Hong Kong Mile, Hong Kong Sprint, Hong Kong Vase, Hong Kong Cup) and it’s truly an international thoroughbred display, but the jockeys also play an important part at Sha Tin.

Jockeys from all over the world embark at Sha Tin to ride on International day, but we’ve selected four of the best jockeys who ride consistently in Hong Kong. These riders all have great records in the four big races and punters have been making good money following them in recent years.

2018 Hong Kong International Jockey Competitors

Jockey

Remarks

2017 IFHA LONGINES World’s Best Jockey

Hugh Bowman

2016 IJC winner before claiming LONGINES World’s Best Jockey crown last year. Recently combined with champion mare Winx for fourth successive Cox Plate.

Hong Kong Champion Jockey

Zac Purton

Last year’s LONGINES IJC champion and champion jockey in Hong Kong last season. Leads the jockeys’ title again this year.

Britain

Ryan Moore

Two-time winner of both the IJC and LONGINES World’s Best Jockey Award (2014 and 2016). Three-time British champion jockey and has 119 G1 wins to his name (in 11 countries).

Britain

Silvestre de Sousa

Recently crowned Britain’s champion jockey for the third time in four years. Won Dubai World Cup in 2014 and runner-up in IJC last year.

France

Mickael Barzalona

Teenage winner of the G1 Derby at Epsom in 2011 and has since enhanced his reputation as a big-race star, notably for Andre Fabre and Godolphin.

Ireland

Colin Keane

Champion jockey in Ireland in 2017 after being champion apprentice just three years earlier. Young gun competing in first IJC.

Japan

Christophe Lemaire

2009 IJC winner. Champion jockey in Japan in 2017 and leads this year’s championship. Winner of 2018 JRA World All-Star Jockeys.

Japan

Yutaka Take

Japan’s best known jockey with more than 4,000 wins and more than 70 G1 victories including in Hong Kong, England and Dubai.

USA

Javier Castellano

Recently posted his 5,000th winner (108 G1s) and arrives fresh from a double at this year’s Breeders’ Cup.

Hong Kong

Highest ranked jockey (1)

As of 21 November

Hong Kong

Highest ranked jockey (2)

As of 21 November

Hong Kong

Leading local jockey

As of 21 November

Previous HKIR jockeys to bet on


  • Our top pick is a jockey that goes by the name of “Magic man” and it’s tough to look past a man with that nickname.

    Joao Moreira

    Joao Moreira

    The Brazilian champion is the most heavily-backed jockey in Hong Kong and his record speaks for itself.

    Moreira has tasted success in all four group one races. He scored wins in the

    The Australian rider has made his new home in Hong Kong for the past several years and he’s had an incredible time.

    Purton’s first group one success came in 2008 with Theseo in the Epsom Handicap in Sydney, but he has since scored numerous group one wins in Hong Kong, which included a double on International day in 2016.

    The 34-year-old from Lismore won the 2016 Hong Kong Sprint with Aerovelocity and the Hong Kong Mile with Beauty Only. He had won features races a few years prior with the likes of Ambitious Dragon and Dominant, but he has never won the Hong Kong Cup.

    That won’t worry punters as the five-time International day group one winner is in hot form this year and that’s likely to continue through to December. Purton has won 114 of his last 611 rides at a ROI of over 100 percent.

    With strong relationships with the Paul O’Sullivan, Tony Cruz, Gary Moore and Caspar Fownes stables, Purton is one of the hot jockeys to follow this year and he’s in line for some of the most sought-after rides throughout the day.

    Matthew Poon

    Matthew Poon

    We would say that Matthew Poon isn’t a household name, but Australian punters know all about the Poon Train.

    Matthew Poon is a Hong Kong-born jockey who became the first jockey from his country to ride in South Australia. Since returning to Hong Kong, Poon has carved out an impressive career which includes 103 winners and a season ROI of 148.4 percent.

    The 24-year-old might not land the plum rides in the four group one races on International day, but he’s a light weight rider at 48kg who can ride those at the minimum weights. He often goes overlooked when riding in the big races at Sha Tin, but he’s more than capable of holding his own and we’re hoping he gets some nice rides on the card.

    Poon continues to return good profits for punters and he’s a great bet at each way odds.

    Ryan Moore

    Ryan Moore

    The Hong Kong Sprint is the only International day group one that European-based jockey Ryan Moore has yet to win.

    Known as a true international talent, Moore has landed some good rides in recent history and his record on the big stage is always improving.

    Moore won the 2015 Hong Kong Mile with Japanese star Maurice and the 2015 Hong Kong Vase with Highland Reel. He again linked with Maurice in 2016 when winning the Hong Kong Cup – its last race before retiring to stud.

    He has won group ones all around the world, including the Japan Cup in 2013 and the Melbourne Cup in 2014. The four-time Breeders’ Cup Turf winner is set to have another big International day which could include a ride on Folkswood in the Hong Kong Cup.

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