Joao Moreira is hoping his decision to side with Beauty Legacy over Champion’s Way in Monday’s (27 January) Hong Kong Classic Mile (1600m), the first leg of the Four-Year-Old Classic Series, will not come back to bite him.
“It was a difficult decision but I can’t ride two horses – it could be the wrong one because Champion’s Way has been running well in strong races and there’s no doubt that he needed a couple of runs to bring his best. But I had to make a decision and I hope I didn’t make the wrong one,” the Brazilian ace said at Sha Tin this morning, Friday, 24 January.
Moreira partnered Champion’s Way to four of his six wins last term as the John Size-trained galloper rose to the top of his generation’s pecking order with a G3 win and an end-of-season rating of 108.
But the four-year-old hierarchy has shuffled after his three defeats in as many starts this term, combined with the rise of the Francis Lui-trained duo Golden Sixty and More Than This, and the arrival in the Size yard of the exciting Beauty Legacy. The last-named’s impressive debut win earlier this month, a rare first-up Class 2 victory off a lofty 92 rating, was enough to sway Moreira.
“Beauty Legacy’s win last time was quite impressive and I think very few horses can do what he’s done,” he said. “First-up in Hong Kong, with the rating that he had and the Class he was in, he proved that he could do what few can do.”