Something has to give at Sha Tin on Saturday (24 October) as two of Hong Kong’s hottest young properties put impressive winning streaks on the line.
The clash between Mighty Giant (129lb) and Sky Field (123lb) in the Class 2 Argyle Handicap (1400m) is the clear highlight of the day with all the elements of a thrilling finale.
First, it sees last season’s champion trainer Ricky Yiu against Caspar Fownes, who has made no secret of his desire to seize the crown and has come out firing with 15 winners to lie four clear of Frankie Lor atop the table.
Second, it pits a resurgent Joao Moreira against a hungry champion jockey Zac Purton, who goes into the weekend seeking to reignite his title challenge after a 30-race losing streak, his longest for four years.
Most of all, Saturday’s race features two richly promising horses with starkly contrasting running styles and Fownes feels that Sky Field’s racing manners and a possible change in tactics hold the key to solving the puzzle.
The flashy chestnut bounded through Class 4 and Class 3 tasks with a trio of striking 1200m wins but a tendency to race freely under restraint from Moreira resurfaced on his latest start and Fownes concedes that this maiden voyage over 1400m needs to go smoothly if hopes of a tilt at the Hong Kong Classic Mile in January are to be realistic.