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Champion’s Way Looks to Join Elite Company

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Champion’s Way | HKJC photo

By Alan Carasso

Fewer than 30 horses in Hong Kong’s professional era have made as many as six trips to the winner’s circle in a single season. With his recent victory in the G1 Champions Mile, reigning Horse of the Year Beauty Generation (NZ) (Road to Rock {Aus}) was winning for a record-setting eighth time this preparation and other legends of the Hong Kong turf to have bagged a half-dozen in a season include Silent Witness (Aus) (El Moxie), Ambitious Dragon (NZ) (Pins {Aus}) and Able Friend (Aus) (Shamardal). John Size, who has trained no fewer than six of the six-time winners, has the chance to be represented by yet another when Champion’s Way (Aus) (Hinchinbrook {Aus}) starts a short-priced favourite Saturday afternoon at Sha Tin.

“You couldn’t help but be impressed, he’s won his five races quite handsomely and I think there’s more in him,” Size told the HKJC’s David Morgan Friday. “I don’t think there’s anything wrong with the form; they can all gallop in Class 2, so if you can win one of those while you’re making progress, it’s a pretty good sign.”

Champion’s Way stretches out to the metric mile for the first time off a courageous defeat of Good Standing (Aus) (Artie Schiller) in a Class 2 over 1400 metres run over a rain-affected track Apr. 14 in which he never looked likely until the 200m mark (video). The form of the race was franked when Good Standing returned to post a decisive victory in the Class 1 Hong Kong-Macau Trophy last weekend.

“He didn’t travel very well at the 1400 last start, so hopefully the mile is suitable for him,” said Size, who also trains the late Hinchinbrook’s Group 1-winning son Beat the Clock (Aus). “I thought it was the ground, I thought he might have been struggling on the wet track to travel properly, but in the past he has shown us that he needs a bit of encouragement to get into his work. Maybe that’s not a bad thing so we’ll see how he progresses and gets a rise in class and longer distances.”

Joao Moreira has a return call aboard the 3-year-old son of Greta’s Yarn (Aus) (Redoute’s Choice {Aus}), an A$130,000 purchase out of the 2017 Inglis Melbourne Premiere Yearling Sale.

 

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