Relieved Yiu turns out first winner
FIRST-season trainer Ricky P. F. Yiu notched his first career winner when Commander (9-1) scampered away with the second race.
'Yes, I am very, very happy. It is a great moment for me and I suppose it is also a bit of a relief because it is just good to have the first winner behind me,' said Yiu.
'Commander had been going well in the mornings and I was certainly happy with his fitness for a 1,200-metre race. But I was worried about the draw because he was right out in the outside barrier. 'But Greg [Childs] rode him very well and Commander responded when it mattered,' said Yiu, formerly assistant trainer to Eddie K. C. Lo. Ironically, it was Lo who supplied the quinella when Always Luck (6-1) stayed on well to peg back weakening Viva St Paul's (15-1). Childs has had a great start to his Hong Kong career and Commander responded readily when asked for his final effort halfway down the straight.
In a couple of strides it was all over. Supporters of the co-favourites Global King, Successful Way and Love Of Freedom (all 5-1), had little reason to feel happy at any stage of proceedings. Successful Way will be improved by the run but Global King, despite the attentions of first-season trainer David Hayes, continues to be a disappointing type. Love Of Freedom was simply never travelling like a winner.
Former top class stayer E Treasure (6-1) broke through for a solid win in the opening event. The 10-year-old was once good enough to represent Hong Kong in the old Invitation Cup but those great days are far behind him.
But there was still enough left in his old legs to get him safely home in this 1,800-metre, Class Four event. He has always been at his best over this trip and he handily saw off topweight and favourite Gold Capture (7-2) who came with his usual run from well back - but found that E Treasure was in determined mood.
Financial Fortune (5-1) ran fairly for third and Super Delight (6-1), who finished fourth, will be improved by this outing. So, too, will Pinch A Prize.