Matthew Chadwick became the latest example of what some experts call “the Nappy Factor” when Golden Effort bolted up in the Tsim Mei Fung Handicap (1200m) at Sha Tin’s midweek AWT meeting this evening (Wednesday, 31 October).
Put simply, the theory goes that the psychological boost of a new baby can inspire a sportsman to achieve great things as he goes back into battle to help provide for the new arrival.
Harder hearts might suggest the fitting of blinkers and a track that was helping front runners also helped Danny Shum’s chestnut, but Chadwick looked a man on a mission when driving Golden Effort to a runaway success just hours after his wife Christine had given birth to their second child.
The bouncing baby boy becomes a brother to Chadwick’s four-year-old daughter Jessica but there is no rush to give him a name just yet.
“That’s undecided – and I think we will leave it to mum – but it’s been a very good day,” he said.
“The track seems to be riding a bit fast but Golden Effort was in against lesser horses in Class 5 for the first time today and that was also a factor.”
Life at Conghua helps consistent Calculation get the fractions just right for Clipperton
John Size has decided that the Jockey Club’s new Conghua facility is more than just a short-term destination for Calculation and the consistent ex-Irish gelding showed he is thriving in Mainland China when running away with the Class 2 Hebe Handicap (1650m).
The Dandy Man gelding, who left Sha Tin for his new base in July and returned to Conghua after a promising reappearance over 1200m earlier this month, gave Sam Clipperton his third winner of the season with a dominant front-running effort.
Clipperton feels Calculation was rather nervous in his early days and that the relaxed environment of Conghua may have helped him mature mentally in recent months.
He added: “He’s a very honest, uncomplicated horse and once we got the lead it all worked to plan perfectly.”
Dylan at the double to end October in style
Dylan Mo chose Halloween to banish the ghosts of a frustrating October and helped himself to a quickfire double aboard Viva Council and Flying Godspell in separate divisions of the Tin Ha Shan Handicap (1200m)
Peter Ho’s Viva Council became the third all-the-way winner in a row, but the trend towards front runners was broken when Flying Godspell came from just behind the lead to force his head in front close home.
Mo is now on seven winners for the season after a quiet spell stretching back for four weeks, while
Flying Godspell’s handler Jimmy Ting was recording the 14th success of his excellent rookie season.
“Flying Godspell was running with his head high so I tried him with a shadow roll when he galloped,” said Ting.
“Dylan said it helped him in the morning and I think it has helped him show some improvement tonight.”
Karis Teetan continues to chip away at Zac Purton’s lead atop the jockeys’ table and the champion will return from a ban this weekend with a lead of just one after Good Fit’s willing success for Frankie Lor in the Tiu Yue Yung Handicap (1800m).
Schofield barely breaks sweat in joining Mo on the double trail
Halloween night started with a reward for patience as Chris So’s Superior Boy finally lived up to his name with an easy success in the Wa Mei Shan Handicap (1650m) under Chad Schofield.
So praised winning owners the Back Room Boys Syndicate for persevering with the winner and had the perfect response when it was suggested that his six-year-old simply enjoyed the Halloween atmosphere.
“Maybe so,” he said. “Perhaps I should start preparing him for next year!”
Schofield will be sweating to make a light weight aboard the exciting Glorious Forever this weekend but there was no need for perspiration as hot favourite Elusive State made it two out of two since joining Tony Millard in the Shek Uk Shan Handicap (1650m).
The bloodless win took Millard back level with Ting on 14 winners at the peak of the training table and the style of the victory suggests further AWT success is sure to follow.
“This could be something special,” he said. “Chad rode a good race and I think it will be another one on the dirt next.”
Hong Kong racing continues at Sha Tin this Sunday (4 November) when the historic Sa Sa Ladies’ Purse (Group Three) will be the highlight of a ten-race card.