Bracing for a tilt at leading miler Golden Sixty, Caspar Fownes has complete faith in Rise High as the injury-ravaged galloper resumes in the G1 Stewards’ Cup (1600m) at Sha Tin on Sunday (24 January).
Rise High is among a select band of eight entrants for the HK$12 million contest as Golden Sixty bids to extend his unbeaten run to 12 successive wins, leaving Fownes with no illusions as what to expect.
“He’s (Rise High) an outstanding horse, he really excites me,” Fownes said of the seven-year-old gelding who hasn’t raced since running third in the G1 LONGINES Hong Kong Cup (2000m) behind Japan’s Win Bright and Ireland’s Magic Wand in December, 2019.
“Obviously, you’re up against a champion, a superstar in Golden Sixty but as long as we can just run a nice race first-up, then we’ll head to the Hong Kong Gold Cup with him.
“It’s great to get him back to the races, 13 months off and we’ve all worked really hard to bring him back and he’s had a couple of nice trials leading into this race.
“When you’re off the scene for a long time, there’s nothing like race fitness.