(Courtesy of http://www.fasttrack.hk)
It’s been a bad week for racing fans with news of the career-threatening injury to Ambitious Dragon and the fall of our old mate Frankie Dettori which will see him outta action for almost a year, but at least, trainer Richard Gibson has come up with something to get us in a flap by having close friend and racing commentator Karen Ling teach his pet parrot how to speak Cantonese.
The whole thing is just so weird that I can’t find a punchline, other than, perhaps, Squawk.
The only other light moments were when Matty “Pyro” Chadwick got so frustrated with his ride on Bullish Champion last Sunday that he banged the wall so hard the fire alarm was set off whereas in race two at Moonee Valley on Friday, a filly, uniquely named Scratchy Bottom, won the race.
Elsewhere, it’s all been pretty quiet on the waterfront and the racing front though, from time to time, I wonder what racing in Singapore will be like when Joao Moreira moves to Hong Kong in mid- October.
It’s disappointing, to say the least, when thinking back to the days when Singapore-based advertising great Ian Batey, the man behind creating the Singapore Girl campaign for Singapore Airlines, and his head of PR, Michael DeKretser introduced me to their new client- the Singapore Turf Club- saying how it was going to give the HKJC a run for its money.
So where’s the STC today?
When in Singapore recently, none of the taxi drivers knew where the hell Kranji Racecourse was- or pretended not to- and a quick “street poll” down Orchard Road showed this same ignorance of racing by the general public.
I don’t think there’s even any racing news in that quaint thing that was once called a newspaper.
What’s really going on in Singapore and why were jockeys Stephen Baster, below, and Steven King suddenly sent packing without any reason?
Guess what happens in Singapore stays in Singapore- and to do with subjects far more important and serious than horse racing which stray into Julien Assange territory.
Very frankly, those connected with Perth racing in very high places know far more about what’s happening at the STC and racing in the Lion City than many in Singapore.
Seeing the money from Singapore wagered on racing in Western Australia- and horses owned over and under the table by Singaporean and Malaysian connections- plus WA money bet on races in Singapore and Malaysia where my old mate Michael DeKretser now resides along with many other once-familiar faces from those early days of the STC, this isn’t all that surprising.
It’s actually a little spookily mysterious and insular and one has to wonder how the Singapore Turf Club will make a comeback to the consciousness of mainstream racing.
It should think about this as there are some fine people working for the Club.
However, as most of us know, what you see is not what you get in Singapore and the government control on everything is Orwellian in structure.
Right now, the perception is that of another racing club plodding along, keeping its head above water, putting on a show for the world once a year and with bookmakers running the show.
THE FAST TRACKER’S ON SHATIN, KNOBS AND MEDIA TARTS.
He’s a jockey so hot that he needs an ice pack on his head after every race, so continue to follow Olivier Doleuze, who has now won two or three consecutive Jockey Challenges.
On a card that’s hardly inspiring and where no horse really jumps out and says, BACK ME, Doleuze has some very strong each-way chances whereas the two usual suspects- Dougie Whyte and Zac Purton- have Ok chances but nothing to do the Watusi about.
Then again, despite all the chatter, did the racing at Flemington and Randwick on Saturday live up to the hype of a pre-Spring Carnival ole ole?
Did Bossy deliver again like this?
Doubt it, amigos except for the blistering win of the brilliant Zoustar in Sydney, a Group 1 ride by Dominic Tourneur on Molto Bene, Puissance De Lune losing The Turnbull Stakes to 30 to 1 shot Happy Trails and the drama of Brett Prebble losing The Bart Cummings on winner Sea Moon when a protest by Glen Boss on the second placed horse was upheld.
The ONE good thing about the Flemington races was having some extremely talented jockeys and trainers winning races and who never receive the recognition they deserve from the pack of old school racing media whores- riders like Tourneur, below, Damien Browne, Dean Yendall, trainer Phil Stokes etc.
It’s not all about fawning over Boss and Williams- and nor is it about shaming and laughing at a battling trainer’s horse in the mounting yard. That could fall under a libel action.
Surely, these racing media whores must see that their time is up along with the newspapers they write for while the racing radio stations they’re on are going broke and on borrowed time?
The pen is mightier than the sword? Maybe on twitter- and only IF you know how to use it.
Meanwhile, Race 3 at Randwick might have been “normal going” for Ray Murrihy, but Kim Kelly out here would have had all the jockeys in that race in the Stewards Room and strung them up by their short and curlies for a farcically run race where even the horses must have dozed off.
These type of “races” are becoming too much of a “trend” on racecourses and need to be stopped. Punters don’t need to look like worse mugs than they already are.
As for my suggestions tomorrow, here they are, but not with the greatest of confidence.
ENTOURAGE SIX UP
SELECTIONS FROM THE BIG APPLE (@SW064351)
Race 10, No. 2 Fionn’s Treasure
Raced three-wide without cover when runner-up to Tour de Force. Gets a plum barrier and will take plenty of catching off the slow tempo.
Race 9, No. 7 Rewarding Hero
Races best when fresh and has only missed a place once at this trip. Motored home smartly last week in a barrier trial and is the one to beat.
Race 7, No. 2 Chancellor
Showed class when placing twice behind Dr Good Habit at the end of last season and should give a better sight at odds second up.
TODAY’S SELECTIONS FROM THE THIRD DIVIDEND
Sha Tin (HONG KONG)
Day Races @HKJC_Racing
Turf (“A” Course)
Weather: Fine and dry. It will be hot in the afternoon. Moderate northerly winds.
Race 1: Broadwood Hcp CL4
1 – Mizzen Grey (9)
2 – Shifachi Tradition (6)
3 – Mobile King (7)
4 – Precision Era (1)
Race 2: Caroline Hill Hcp CL5
1 – Happy Kaiser (3)
2 – Idyllic Wind (7)
3 – Clement Spirit (2)
4 – Rain OF Thunder (5)
Race 3: Hoi Ping Hcp CL5
1 – Positive Energy (2)
2 – Cosmo One (11)
3 – Gorgeous Like (5)
4 – Great Pegasus (1)
Race 4: Leighton Hcp CL4
1 – Santa Fe Sun (1)
2 – Kynam (2)
3 – T-Bolt (5)
4 – Nightlign (12)
Race 5: Po Leung Kuk Anniversary Cup
1 – Majestic Anthem (1)
2 – Young Talent (7)
3 – Life Of Beauty (6)
4 – Power Blitz (12)
Race 6: Leighton Hcp CL4
1 – Sight Believer (9)
2 – Dynamic Voyage (1)
3 – Joyful Luck (2)
4 – Speedygonzalez (6)
Race 7 (Q1): Link Hcp CL3
1 – Eagle Power (1)
2 – Holmes Legend (7)
3 – Kings Pact (4)
4 – Let’s Goal (9)
Race 8 (Q2): Manawatu Challenge Trophy CL3 Hcp
1 – Dining Star (7)
2 – Super Jockey (3)
3 – Psychologist (6)
4 – Strong Foundation (4)
Race 9 (Q3): Sun Wui Hcp CL3
1 – Boy Oh Boy (10)
2 – D’Or Wongchoy (3)
3 – Rewarding Hero (7)
4 – Great Charm (12)
Race 10 (Q4): Sunning Hcp CL2
1 – Lucky Double Eight (3)
2 – Smart Volatility (10)
3 – Fionn’s Treasure (2)
4 – Hard Ball Get (5)
Race 10: Lucky Double Eight (3)
Rae 9: Boy Oh Boy (10)
Race 1: Mizzen Grey (9)
Race 6: Speedygonzalez (6)
Quaddie ($100 gets you 39%)