Horse Racing
Dylan Mo has graduation in his sights at Happy Valley

By Declan Schuster
19/03/2019 17:34

Dylan Mo heads into Wednesday’s (20 March) eight-race card at Happy Valley only one win away from his 70th career success and the 25 year old is upbeat about his chances of notching that apprenticeship-ending victory.

Dylan Mo celebrates following his win aboard Hay Run.
Dylan Mo celebrates following his win aboard Hay Run.

“I have a couple of good chances; all of them are in very good form,” Mo said.

Mo has six rides on the night, including last start-winner Circuit Glory in the feature, the Class 1 Happy Valley Vase (1800m).

The Tony Cruz-trained galloper led all the way last start and Mo is expecting him to hold his form on Wednesday night.  

“This race is a very small field (8 runners), so I will try my best to stay calm and ride the horse so that I can give him every chance to win”

Another of his mounts on the night comes up in the last race with the Peter Ho-trained Magnificent (Race 8), who dead-heated with Encouraging in his most recent start.

“The horse he shared the win with won on Sunday, so this one also is a good chance” Mo said.

Magnificent dead-heated with Encouraging at only his fourth start.

Encouraging went on to score an all-the-way win at Sha Tin at the weekend and in doing so sealed a hat-trick.

“The form is good, everything is good, and Magnificent is stronger than last time,” Mo added.

The apprentice has tallied 20 wins so far this season, a testament to his hard work and determination.

After joining the Hong Kong Jockey Club’s Apprentice Jockeys’ School, Mo was sent on an overseas placement in 2013, first to South Africa and then, in 2014, to New Zealand where he was apprenticed to Allan Sharrock.  

Mo’s overseas experience provided a good grounding for a return to Hong Kong as apprentice to Danny Shum and he scored his first win aboard Fish N’ Chips on 1 January, 2017.

“I will never forget my first win in Hong Kong!” he said.

Dylan Mo following his first win aboard Fish N’ Chips.
Dylan Mo following his first win aboard Fish N’ Chips.

Mo’s supportive parents will be in attendance on Wednesday at Happy Valley in anticipation of a graduation win.

“I like doing this and my parents have been very supportive, this is my career and my hobby.” he said.

Mo has been noted as a hard-worker and the Hong Kong native has overcome a number of injuries and setbacks across his career, including a dislocated hip in March last year which sidelined him for a substantial stretch.

The challenge of transitioning to the senior ranks is one that motivates Mo.   

“It’s the next step, the next level, so I need to try and get the opportunities and support, I am looking forward to it, I will try my best” he said.

Frankie Lor makes history at Sha Tin with Derby win

Furore gave Frankie Lor his first BMW Hong Kong Derby at the weekend and the Hugh Bowman-ridden galloper’s triumph in the HK$18 million race is still sinking in.

“It was like a dream. We got him there in good form and then it was down to the jockey and he did a good job,” Lor said.

Furore and Hugh Bowman finish first in the Hong Kong Derby.

Lor now heads to Happy Valley with another Derby winner, the 2017 G1 Queensland Derby victor, Ruthven, who will aim for a revival at his Happy Valley debut in the Class 1 Happy Valley Vase (1800m).

“He’s never been to Happy Valley, so it’s new for him but he’s dropped to Class 1, he should be okay at 1800 metres and he’s had a break.” said an optimistic Lor.

“He hasn’t had a problem - we just decided to give him a bit of time,” he added.

Ruthven had an issue last spring but Lor insists that he is sound and ready to run – having not raced since a sub-par 12th in December’s G1 LONGINES Hong Kong Vase (2400m).

“He had a problem with his suspensory in his right hind, so sometimes he’s not 100 percent when he trots. But he’s not sore, he looks well so we’ll let him race,” the trainer said.

Ruthven is one of two chances from the Lor yard with the two-time winner Turin Redstar set to take his place.

“I think the 1800 metres should be good for him - it won't be a problem so he should run a good race,” he said.

This will be Turin Redstar’s first attempt at racing beyond 1650m but Frankie Lor is expecting improvement to come as he steps up to 1800m.  

“I still think he can improve a little bit and de Sousa will ride him,” he added.

The Happy Valley action kicks off at 7:15pm with the Class 5 Briar Handicap (1650m).