Paul O’Sullivan moved off the foot of the trainer standings when Planet Star won at Sha Tin on Sunday, the handler’s second win in as many meetings during an otherwise barren February, and his campaign has taken a further upturn with news of another “Star” heading his way.
Pakistan Star is on the move. The two-time Group 1 winner, one of Hong Kong’s highest profile horses due to his bamboozling mix of brilliant ability and at times wayward behaviour, will make the short walk from Tony Cruz’s stable block to take up residence in the O’Sullivan barn.
“It’s nice to get the chance to train him,” the New Zealander said at Sha Tin this morning, Tuesday, 26 February. “It will be nice to have a runner in Group races again, that hasn’t happened for a year or so. We’ll see how we go.”
O’Sullivan has found wins tough to come by since the retirement of his last stable star, Hong Kong’s champion sprinter Aerovelocity. When owner Kerm Din asked him unexpectedly to take over the training of Pakistan Star, the man with only nine victories on the board this season was willing to oblige.
“Anybody would be happy to train him,” he said. “But with him comes the challenges, he’s not straightforward so hopefully a change of environment, things might improve, who knows?
“Mr. Din called me last week, we had a coffee on Saturday and he’s a straightforward, quiet-speaking sort of guy – the good thing about him was he never rubbished anybody, he wasn’t critical of Tony or the jockeys or anything like that.”