(Courtesy of http://www.fasttrack.hk)
INTRODUCING KIMBERLEY MOSSE.
Let’s face it, we all know that Gerard Mosse is a charismatic, handsome French animal who rides tall in the saddle on and off the track and can be a magnifique Big Race jockey.
He’s not known as The Swordsman for nothing.
He’s known as The Parrot for another.
But nothing could have prepared us for what we saw when we met his gorgeous young daughter- Kimberley- modeling at Fashion Styles The Valley at Happy Valley last Wednesday.
Watching those that have “favorited” a pic of Kimberley by racing fans and jockeys and trainers in the Twitterverse, today’s cast of racing presenters could be looking at some very real- and much younger- competition!
Take Francesca Cumani away, and the racing world needs some new faces with horse racing as part of their DNA.
Kimberley Mosse has everything it takes to be the host of a younger, cooler racing program, a world class model- and actress and singer- even if she can’t act or sing.
Tres jolie, mais oui, mes enfants?
A SUPER SATURDAY- BUT WHERE WAS DOUGIE WHYTE?
Thanks to the great team behind TABracing Radio’s Big Breakfast, we have always supported racing in Western Australia despite what many “Eastsiders” say about the vagaries of racing in that state and its well-known links with Malaysian bookies that’s gone on for way too long and the ongoing saga of “dual ownerships”.
However, to fly in a jockey with the CV of Douglas Whyte and not guarantee he has rides on the two feature races of their Super Saturday meeting has us shaking our heads.
Wonder what Stephen Wicks from Perth Racing has to say- and why did the HKJC bother to, well, help out racing in Perth???
What’s the ROI for the HKJC and where’s the beef for Whyte?
It’s to his credit that Whyte, being the professional that he is, not only agreed to take over at the last minute from the suspended Joao Moreira, but also flew down despite having no rides in the two Group 1 races.
Only when Paul Harvey suddenly became indisposed on the race day did Whyte get the ride on that great old timer Grand Nirvana in the Group 1 Railway Stakes whose best days are over.
His other rides? There was vintage Whyte with a winner aboard Black Tycoon in the Tattersalls Cup and a close second on the highly-touted first-starter Sujet.
Stephen Wicks and the others involved in organizing this meeting- the biggest in WA’s racing racing calendar- perhaps need to think if this day should be best kept purely for Australian horses and riders- regular riders of their mounts and with trainers and owners unwilling to change the goalposts to be nice chaps.
To try and make it a half-arsed “International” event with only a Hong Kong jockey invited- not even a Corey Brown or Manoel Nunes from Singapore, someone from Macau, perhaps a Mark DuPlessis from New Zealand- doesn’t make sense.
Surely, a special Australasian Jockeys Challenge with horses picked through a ballot system would make more sense- and held on a different day?
Right now, having a jockey from just one other country competing on this Super Saturday meeting looks like trying to force a square peg into a round hole- meaning Dougie Whyte- and more of an exhibition appearance by a champion jockey.
On a more positive note, though the Group 1 Railway Stakes went somewhat off the tracks for Douglas Whyte, it was won by the wonderful Lucky Grey, trained by Trevor Andrews and very well ridden by Shaun O’Donnell. It was the second time the galloper took charge of the same train- and race.
And though the Group 1 Winterbottom Stakes bit Whyte and the HKJC on their collective bums, it was won by the brilliant Queensland galloper Buffering ridden by the equally brilliant Damian Browne.
It was a win by a nose from the Peter Moody-trained and Luke Nolen-ridden Moment Of Change- which, for a very brief moment, came close to being ridden by Whyte. This was when Luke Nolen was still nursing an injured knee.
It was a finish and a half- not without its dramas after the race when three jockeys wished to view the patrol film in a somewhat roughly run race.
After a brief Oh No Moment- and we’re betting, it will continue- it was “right to pay” and all credit to trainer Robert Heathcote and this great sprinter.
Now, we need to go have a tinkle and hope the powers-that-be at Perth Racing understand where we’re coming from.
SNOWDEN, DARLEY AND SNOW WHITE JOBS.
All this talk about the departure of Peter Snowden and who will replace the trainer at Darley is reaching Monty Pythonesque proportions with some of the names seriously mentioned being sillier than The Life Brian.
Then, we checked and found out that some of these names actually WANTED their names mentioned to enjoy their 15 minutes of fame, act coy when asked if the rumors were true, and build up their “brand value”.
To avoid embarrassing these fools, we’ll keep their names inside our secret folder under KNOBS.
OVER-SUPPLY AND DEMAND?
It was good to read Richard Gibson lavish praise on Umberto Rispoli for his ride on Great Charm after its win on Wednesday night at Happy Valley.
It was an extremely good ride with the trainer, who has worked with some of the greatest jockeys in Europe, puzzled that Rispoli is not used more than he is during his short stint in Hong Kong.
One can’t blame Gibson for being puzzled- but jockeys on these flying visits simply don’t have the long-term commitments trainers and owners need. It’s a real Catch-22 position.
About two years ago, Umberto Rispoli, in Hong Kong for quite a long period of time, was the new whiz kid in town- in huge demand and racking up a number of winners for different trainers.
This season, Rispoli has arrived in Hong Kong for “only” a flying visit at a time when the riding ranks are spoilt for choice and when even very familiar names to trainers and owners like Brett Prebble and Weichong Marwing are finding it tough getting rides whereas Colm O’Donoghue and Nico Pinna have days when they don’t even HAVE a ride.
Most of the available rides- at least the rides with winning chances- are divided between Zac Purton, Olivier Doleuze, Dougie Whyte, Joao Moreira and Tye Angland, close behind are Keith Yeung and Vincent CY Ho while Matthew Chadwick has first call on rides from the Tony Cruz yard.
As for the rest of the jockeys, it really is pot luck- and good luck, boys.
One can never say Hong Kong racing does anything in half measures.
Last season due to a laundry list of suspensions, the HKJC was found wanting with a depleted group of riders and had to hastily fly in reinforcements for a race day.
The mad scramble had a Monty Pythonesque ring to it- something like The Ministry Of Silly Walks. Or Silly Rides.
Today, it seems there is a very long “reserve list” in place who are tossed the crumbs once in a while.
The fact that a Big Race jockey like Brett Prebble would be lucky to get five rides on any race day, shows how much things have changed.
Just two years ago, Prebble, who won the Melbourne Cup last year aboard Green Moon, was being hailed as the successor to Douglas Whyte’s long reign as champion jockey with support from some of the biggest stables and full books of rides. Life was good.
Marwing, meanwhile, looked set to become the semi-permanent stable jockey for John Moore and focused on that mission.
It would have been a great gig, but Moore plays his cards close to his chest. One wonders if even Brother Gary and Georgie Boy know what he’s thinking.
All in the family? Doubt it, Ethel. Loose lips sink ships.
Today, the goalposts have been moved and few are kicking the ball towards Prebble.
Whether he will be willing to sit and take the situation remains to be seen.
Same goes for Marwing and we can’t see either jockey taking a backward step and leaving Hong Kong for Swingabore. That would be as desperate as those housewives.
The sudden emergence of Joao Moreira this season like The Magic Man label he owns, and, to a lesser extent, Karis Teetan plus the enormous success being enjoyed by Tye Angland has really put the cats amongst the pigeons.
Feathers have been ruffled and the HKJC has been dealt a very good hand that doesn’t mean it being held to ransom or beholden to anyone when it comes to “star appeal” which has a domino effect on wagering.
The current scenario also shows that if a jockey is not here from the start of the season to do the hard work- get to know the trainers, turn up for trackwork, make loud sucking noises, attend those tedious lunches with owners who want “sure wins” while one pretends to find their “jokes” real rib-ticklers or doesn’t make an immediate impression and hit the ground running like Karis “Teats” Teetan has done, it’s lonely as hell and no one can hear you scream in space, Rocket Man.
Having said this, we know that Colm O’Donoghue came to town long before the season started, did all the hard track work, rode in trials and has done everything to get some real support without making a real whimpering knob of himself.
However, apart from one ride from David Hall with a winning chance- and on which he won- the Irishman is the Invisible Man.
Has Hall continued to support the Irish jockey? If you know, the trainer from his days in Melbourne, the question requires no answer.
The situation sucks where riders don’t have rides on race days and are glorified track riders, but what more can one do?
Kiss ass and walk around with their head up the ass of trainers begging for rides? That can get messy.
Meanwhile, come to Hongkers when the season is up and running, and it’s nay- neigh?- impossible to make up for lost time as rides have already been secured, and if a trainer or owner is successful- meaning, happy- with a jockey, the wheel ain’t broke, so why fix it?
What’s the solution to all this? Fuck knows. Join the circus and travel the world? Hire Jerry Green as your de facto agent? Enjoy the all-expenses paid holiday and visit Lamma Island on a race day?
THE FAST TRACKER AND SUGGESTIONS FOR SHATIN
A winner for Tye Angland.
R2 JOY TOGETHER
Could be an Angland/Purton first double.
R3 SILLY BUDDIES
Now, John Size is using Matty Chadwick as well??? Looks like Silly Buddies can show Matty that Size matters.
R4 TREASURE MAN/FORTUNE TERRITORY
As usual, a tough start to the Triple Trio, but both of these can go close. Bold Tack, Magical Beam and Idyllic Wind have place claims.
R5 LET ME GO
Should be too good for this lot and a good banker for the first leg of the 6up. Life Of Beauty, Optimization Star and Southern Springs are place chances with Malhechor Gold being a very big outsider.
R6 FLAME HERO/K-MOOCHI
Zac Purton takes over on Flame Hero for the first time, and with a good barrier draw for once, should go close. It could even give The Zac Attack his third win for the day- this early.
K-Moochi goes well for Alvin Ng and gawd knows the apprentice needs a winner. Hayhay, Medic Kingdom and Travel Smart have strong place chances.
R7 ALL YOU WISH/DESIGNS ON ROME
One of the two should win. Should.
Will be at very short odds, is racing up a class and drawn badly- BUT should be too good and Luger could be one of those John Size runners that string together a number of consecutive wins.
Victory Heart is an interesting runner and if you have puffy lips, pucker up and have a fiver on the weirdly named Collagen.
R9 AMBER DRAGON/GREEN MANNER/WINNING INSTINCT/APPROVE
A really tough race and the blowout leg of the Six Up- if Luger shoots blanks.
R10 METALLIC STAR/ABLE FRIEND/WAH MAY STAR
A tough end to the card with some of the better chances drawn wide and others like Happy Era and Majestic Falcon racing down a class. Jun Gong to upset- but Metallic Star and Able Friend, below, should run the quinella with the question mark being how much Tony Cruz might have improved Wah May Star since being transferred to his stable.
SARIKA’S SIX UP AND QUADDIE
SINGAPORE AND ITS GOLDEN LA LA
Interesting to hear that Corey Brown has had his license to ride in Singapore extended until the end of 2014 along with Alan Munro, Barend Vorster along with Manoel Nunes who we’re tipping will be the city’s “next Joao Moreira.”
Sure, there’s much MUCH more happening in Singapore’s hush-hush racing world with whatever happens in Singapore racing staying in Singapore so we’ll leave this for another time as it’s a very long and convoluted story involving a colorful cast of characters including a number of SPGs- Sarong Party Girls- who we know very well and love to la la talk.
We leave Singapore with this rather, er, quaint winning photo after the running of last weekend’s Longines Singapore Gold Cup which was won by the Michael Freedman-trained Protaois and ridden by Tommy Berry on one of his flying visits.
What’s the bet he’ll be flying back to Singapore for some smash and grab successes unless returning to add to Hong Kong’s bulging riding ranks and riding primarily for John Moore?
Meanwhile, hands up those who knew about the Longines Singapore Gold Cup?
Oy, you at the back- Mr Teo. Put your hand down. You, too, Dan Tan. Stick to the football pitch.
FINDING THAT SILVER LINING IN AUTUMN GOLD.
We’re still recovering at the shock of seeing Autumn Gold running in the Hong Kong Vase.
For over a year, we have taken the piss outta Dougie Whyte for sticking with this German import that arrived in Hong Kong with greater expectations than a Dickens novel and seen as a big Derby prospect.
But despite Whyte- and he only gets on horses with winning chances- staying loyal to the good looking stayer, the Sean Woods-trained galloper has disappointed.
In fact, this season alone it has disappointed five times with Whyte aboard.
Last Sunday, Whyte finally got off the horse to ride Akeed Mofeed in the Longines Jockey Club Cup.
Gerard Mosse, one of the best Big Race jockeys in the world, jumped aboard and Autumn Gold ran an inglorious last. And now, it’s in the Hong Kong Vase.
Perhaps all those trainers who would love to get their hands on the galloper know what we have always believed: Autumn Gold has untapped potential but needs someone to find the key to this horse opera.
Meanwhile, we wait to see who will ride Autumn Gold on December 8 and where and when the mystery surrounding this horse will be revealed- and not a minute too soon.
Thoughts, Mr Hitchcock?
JOAN RIVERS TO GIVE RACING A FACELIFT?
Which racing club will have the enormous gonads to think outta the square and beyond another Breakfast With The Stars event and bring Joan Rivers and The Fashion Police to an International race meeting, check out the fashions on the field and the fashionistas in their boxes and spice things up?
Jeez, those presentation ceremonies no one watches have been going on without any changes since the day Methuselah was named The World’s Oldest Man and presented with some new robes.
Surely, they can do with a facelift? It’s too late for our very old mate Methuselah.
At least, that chef from hell- Gordon Ramsay- is expected to be our guest on Longines Hong Kong International Week, which could easily result in something not safe, predictable and incredibly boring.
PARTING SHOT: NIGELLA LAWSON TALKS DIRTY!
SELECTIONS FROM THE BIG APPLE (@SW064351)
Race 7, No. 2 Designs On Rome
Ideally suited this course and distance and drawn to advantage.
Race 9, No. 1 Red Dancer
Held ground after contesting lead with Todos Con Suerte. Gets a softer run here and can bounce back.
Race 10, No. 14 Nice Folks
No match for Ho In One but was grinding away after waiting for a split. Consider.
TODAY’S SELECTION FOR SHA TIN 24.11.13 (FROM THE THIRD DIVIDEND)
SHA TIN (HONG KONG)
Day Races @HKJC_Racing
Turf (“C” Course)
Weather: Mainly cloudy with a few rain patches. Visibility relatively low in some areas. The maximum temperature will be around 23 degrees during the day. Moderate easterly winds. Winds will strengthen from the north at night. It will become cool with temperatures falling to around 18 degrees.
Race 1: Chevalier Agriculture CL4
1 – Archippus (6)
2 – Pure Force (2)
3 – Xi Ying Men (3)
4 – Gorgeous Debut (1)
Race 2: Chevalier Aluminium CL4
1 – Multiexpress (5)
2 – Fair Wind (10)
3 – Disciples Twelve (1)
4 – Nightlign (12)
Race 3: Chevalier Cold Storage CL3
1 – Silly Buddies (12)
2 – Ongoing Volatility (6)
3 – Master Kochhanwong (7)
4 – Mr Ginger (3)
Race 4: Chevalier Construction CL5
1 – Fortune Territory (6)
2 – Treasure Man (12)
3 – Idyllic Wind (8)
4 – Magical Beam (2)
Race 5: Chevalier E&M Engineering CL4
1 – Southern Springs (9)
2 – Let Me Go (1)
3 – Forever Ahead (4)
4 – Super Horse (2)
Race 6: Chevalier Lifestyle CL4
1 – Flame Hero (2)
2 – K-Moochi (10)
3 – Hayhay (11)
4 – Medic Kingdom (14)
Race 7 (Q1): The Chevalier Cup CL1 Hcp
1 – All You Wish (4)
2 – Designs On Rome (2)
3 – Noble Alpha (5)
4 – Let Me Handle It (9)
Race 8 (Q2): Chevalier Lifts CL3 hcp
1 – Luger (6)
2 – Victory Heart (8)
3 – Fat Choy Hong Kong (1)
4 – Furio (9)
Race 9 (Q3): Chevalier Property CL3 hcp
1 – Amber Dragon (4)
2 – Ambitious Champion (5)
3 – Red Dancer (1)
4 – Green Manner (3)
Race 10 (Q4): Chevalier Senior Housing CL2
1 – Able Friend (8)
2 – Happy Era (1)
3 – Ho In One (12)
4 – Jun Gong (10)
Race 6: Flame Hero (2)
Race 7: All You Wish (4)
Race 2: Multiexpress (5)
Race 10: Elegance Classic (12)
Quaddie ($100 gets you 39%)