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Wednesday, April 1: Sha Tin (Hong Kong) Picks

by Declan Schuster (Hong Kong Jockey Club)

March 30, 2020


Wednesday, April 1, 2020
First Post: 7:15AM ET

Race 1: #11 Exponents, #4 Aurora Steed, #7 Great Son, #3 General Trump
Race 2: #4 Good Luck Money, #9 Little Thunder, #10 Golden Mission, #2 Gracious Ryder
Race 3: #14 Master Bernini, #4 Curling Luxury, #7 Hidden Spirit, #12 Winners Brother
Race 4: #7 Excel Delight, #6 Daily Beauty, #11 Sky Treasure, #2 Goldie Flanker
Race 5: #1 Jade Fortune, #14 Super Red Dragon, #11 All For St Paul’s, #3 King’s Race
Race 6: #11 Utopia Life, #4 Wind N Grass, #8 Flying Genius, #3 Mega Heart
Race 7: #6 Red Elysees, #4 Righteous Doctrine, #11 Owners’ Star, #8 Acclaimed Light
Race 8: #3 Buddies, #13 Elite Patch, #1 Glorious Artist, #2 Dances With Dragon

Race 1: Silvermine Bay Handicap (7:15AM ET)

#11 Exponents’ last win came off a mark of 28 on a Wednesday night at Sha Tin and having now returned to that mark, it appears as though lightning is preparing to strike twice, especially with that jockey, Grant van Niekerk getting the leg up again. His best is up to this and with even luck he’s going to take a power of beating. #4 Aurora Steed has steadily improved with each outing this term. His recent dirt trial caught the eye and if he handles the surface on race day, then he’s in with a leading chance, especially with Joao Moreira up. The Brazilian ace is fresh off a Sunday five-timer at Sha Tin. #7 Great Son joined the Paul O’Sullivan stable at the start of this season and since then has looked good. Zac Purton rode a double for O’Sullivan on Sunday and their good fortune can continue here. #3 General Trump is consistent, and he warrants respect.

Race 2: Kiu Tsui Handicap (2nd Section) (7:45AM ET)

#4 Good Luck Money steps out on debut for championship leading trainer Ricky Yiu. He caught the eye in a recent trial on the dirt at Conghua, cruising up to cross the line with stablemate Team Power who has subsequently finished second last Sunday at Sha Tin. He’s worth taking a chance on in a very open Class 4 contest. #9 Little Thunder is another who has caught the eye at the trials. He led that day and is a chance to employ those tactics here on race day as he looks to offset the wide draw. #10 Golden Mission is winless. He’s mixed his form but has shown his capabilities on his day and a recent trial on the dirt suggested he handles the surface. #2 Gracious Ryder is next best.

Race 3: Tung Wan Handicap (8:15AM ET)

Tony Millard has an exceptional record with stable transfers and #14 Master Bernini looks ready to join that list. Although he’s winless across 25 starts, he has shown steady improvement, especially on the dirt and with only 116 on his back, he can take this contest out. #4 Curling Luxury is the likely leader of this. He gets the services of Zac Purton here which is a good push and as a winner on the surface previously, he rates as a leading chance. #7 Hidden Spirit is looking for back-to-back course and distance wins. He remains in Class 5 off that win which is suitable, and he maps to get the right run from gate two. #12 Winners Brother is winless, but he turned his form around last start when missing by a short head at 94/1. He’s next best if he can reproduce that effort here.

Race 4: Kiu Tsui Handicap (1st Section) (8:45AM ET)

#7 Excel Delight is a course and distance winner already this season. He narrowly missed last start and he gets an excellent chance here to atone for that performance. Joao Moreira takes the reins again and he’s drawn to get the gun run from gate two. #6 Daily Beauty has shown steady improvement across his short three-start career. He’s another who has been favoured by the draw and at his second start on the dirt, he’s expected to improve sharply. #11 Sky Treasure is a three-time course and distance winner. He’s won off this mark before and if he finds the front early, he could take plenty of running down. #2 Goldie Flanker is next best.

Race 5: Pui O Handicap (9:15AM ET)

#1 Jade Fortune steps back to Class 4 now which suits and with Zac Purton taking over he appears ready to win. He’s a Class 2 winner previously so the step back now to this grade should prove fruitful, especially off a number of solid Class 3 performances this term. #14 Super Red Dragon gets in light with only 114lb to carry from gate two. He’s drawn to get the gun run and with no weight on his back he remains a leading player. #11 All For St Paul’s is lightly raced but he has displayed plenty of ability across his short three-start career.  With further improvement he can figure and he’s one who is more than likely not going to relish the added distance. #3 King’s Race has already recorded one all-the-way win this term and he’s expected to try similar here. He’ll run them along and is capable of holding on for prize money. 

Race 6: Clear Water Bay Handicap (9:45AM ET)

#11 Utopia Life is unlucky not to have already won across his career but still, he gets an excellent chance to finally go on with it here. He’s drawn to get a nice run and with luck in the straight, he can deliver for Chad Schofield and Manfred Man. #4 Wind N Grass has shown steady improvement across his career and he tackles the dirt for the first time here. Suspect he handles the surface as he’s on the seven day back-up here in order to shed his maiden tag. #8 Flying Genius rarely runs a bad race and his forward style of running can ensure he’s in with a chance here. He’s drawn beautifully for Zac Purton who should be able to control the tempo and give him every chance. #3 Mega Heart has placed four times over this course and distance this season. He’s consistent and is not out of his depth against this bunch.

Race 7: Hap Mun Bay Handicap (10:15AM ET)

#6 Red Elysees narrowly missed over this course and distance two starts ago, before stepping out over 1650m to finish a close-up fifth. He’ll relish the return in trip to 1800m here and with even luck this is his to lose. #4 Righteous Doctrine is looking for back-to-back wins after ending his streak of 15 runs without a win. He’s found his groove and with Joao Moreira retaining the ride he warrants plenty of respect. #11 Owners’ Star is consistent and he hasn’t been too far away over this course and distance previously. This is suitable although still, more difficult. #8 Acclaimed Light is next best.  

Race 8: Cheung Sha Handicap (10:50AM ET) 

#3 Buddies ran a blinder last start on the turf and he returns to his preferred course and distance here. Joao Moreira hops up and has a three-time course and distance winner previously he rates as the one to beat, especially breaking gate three. #13 Elite Patch is a two-time dirt winner previously. He steps up in trip here which is the unknown but his last few runs have given the impression that he is ready for it and his latest trial caught the eye. Three out of #1 Glorious Artist’s four wins have come over this course and distance, each time with Zac Purton up and again this galloper warrants respect, especially in Class 2 which he is proven in. #2 Dances With Dragon bagged his first win for Caspar Fownes last start and lines up again here. He’s next best. 

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