Anthony Van Dyck (D819) and Prince Of Arran (C817), Race 4: Hong Kong Vase.
Of the visiting Hong Kong Vase contenders, these two have had the best preparation. The Epsom Derby winner Anthony Van Dyck has taken all before with quiet, gentle and competitive gallops with stablemates Magic Wand and Mount Everest on the turf and dirt. He is well in himself and should run a race. Meanwhile, the Melbourne Cup placegetter Prince Of Arran has done a lot of work with two sharp turf hit outs and plenty of dirt pieces. He looks fluent and is a good chance here.
One of Hong Kong’s rising sprint stars, Full Of Beauty may have a task to beat his high-calibre rivals in the Hong Kong Sprint, but this John Size-trained five-year-old continues to go the right way in his work and trials. He impressed when hitting the line with full of merit in last Friday’s dirt trial under the race-day jockey Vincent Ho and it seems that he has progressed further since his tough last-start effort in the G2 trial from a wide gate. He has more upside and should be included in all bet types.
Japanese raider Normcore, who will be ridden by Japan’s reigning champion jockey Christophe Lemaire in the Hong Kong Mile, showed a blistering turn-of-foot in an impressive gallop on Wednesday, opening right up in the final stages glued to the outside rail paint, clocking 21.3 for the last 400m and 10.81 for the final 200m. Fuji Stakes winner has a bright appearance and looks up to the task, along with compatriot Admire Mars, a lightly raced three-year-old by the former champion miler Daiwa Major. He did his major piece of work on the turf, clocking 10.85 for the final 200m.
The Caspar Fownes-trained Rise High could blow them all in the Hong Kong Cup (2,000m) following some eye-catching gallops and a barrier trial. The five-year-old has been a different horse this season and he stamped himself as top-class horse with an upset win over Beauty Generation in the G2 Sha Tin Trophy on October 20. He has come on leaps and bounds since, going along smoothly in his final major work on the dirt with Southern Legend on Thursday, where he sat a length-off his stablemate and quickened nicely to level up. He is right on target for this event.