Support growing for more trials at Valley
THE barrier trial session at Happy Valley yesterday brought calls for more of the same from a number of trainers.
Lawrie Fownes spoke for them when he said: ''We have three sets of trials at the Valley each season and there has to be an argument for doubling that.
''It gives the young horses a chance to experience the course as well as getting used to travelling in the float from Sha Tin down to the Valley. ''It also means we can work them on the grass a bit more without harming the track.'' Neville Begg is another trainer who is a big fan of the Valley trials, as are David Hill and Ivan Allan who have supported both sets to date this season. Five trials were run yesterday with the in-form Derek Cruz notching a double. Cruz scored with first-season import Blue And Gold in the third and his experienced handicapper, Dawn Raid, in the fourth. Blue And Gold has always looked a nice horse in the making and it was disappointing to see him drop out of contention in a trial last week. But he almost certainly needed that after the break and hit the line much more strongly yesterday, staying on well past Patrick Biancone's Sun Crest who, like so many in his yard, is now starting to come to himself.
Derek Cruz's impressive youngster, Aurora Spirit, also came home pleasingly to the line in this heat, another horse who went much better than when he trialled last week.
Dawn Raid went well from trap to line and is one to note over a mile. He goes equally well at either Sha Tin or the Valley. He just On this kind of form, his clash with Helene Star on Saturday has all the makings of a classic, with two real speedsters up against each other.
Derek Cruz's Polygain put in some sterling work in readiness for Saturday's 2,200-metre event. He came lengths clear of stablemate Famous Planning in an impressive piece for Club Jockey John Marshall. There was also useful work from Lam Hung-fie's Planet who went appreciably better than his higher rated stablemate, Call Me Special. First trial: 1, GLORY OF INDIA (D. Gauci); 2, Ampersand (K. S. Lam); 3, Win Again (B. Thomson). Others (in finishing order): Show No Mercy, Survey King, Eminence, Rare View, Grand Warrior, On The Double, Over The Blues. Time: 0:59.9 (24.6). Distances: 1/2l, 1l. Winner trained by Lawrie Fownes.
Second trial: 1, GOFORIT (K. Chu); 2, Clean Them Up (B. Rouse); 3, Futures (C. K. Chung). Others (in finishing order): Mighty Mighty, Enjoy All Way, First Asia, Smart Boy, Gold Peach, Fat City. Time: 1.00.7 (26.3). Distances: Sh, sh. Winner trained by David Oughton.
Third trial: 1, BLUE AND GOLD (A. Munro); 2, Sun Crest (G. Mosse); 3, Aurora Spirit (C. K. Chung). Others: Kowloon Might, Excel Treasure, Good Scene, Jewellery Star, Happy Lord, Tell Me Win. Time: 1.16.4 (26.2). Distances: 1/2l, 1/2l. Winner trained by Derek Cruz.
Fourth trial: 1, DAWN RAID (A. Munro); 2, Tea Break (C. K. Tse); 3, Namjong Again (W. Smith). Others: Master Glory, American Challenge, Mehboob II, Money Spinner, Cool Ice, Real Sport. Time: 1.16.1 (24.9). Distances: Sh, 3l. Winner trained by Derek Cruz.
Fifth trial: 1, LUCKY SOUND (B. Thomson); 2, Sunday Cruise (D. Gauci); 3, Mustang (B. Marcus). Others: Run Archie Run, Colourful World, Winged Foot, Space Rock, Drawing Away, Expo. Time: 1:16.4 (25.5). Distances: Nk, 2l. Winner trained by Eddie Lo.