Young and old send out warnings
The young and the old combined to catch the eye during yesterday's barrier trial session down Sha Tin's 1,000-metre chute.
The Geoff Lane-trained Fame And Fortune and Wylie Wong's Speedy Forward confirmed earlier trackwork impressions that they are markedly better than the form book suggests when they ran on into second in the third and fourth heats in this four-trial session.
It was David Hill's Sheer Madness, a much more experienced handicapper, who looked the one to follow closest from the first two heats.
Fame And Fortune has been racing over unsuitably short trips in his few starts to date but has always worked and trialled as if more than capable of making a name for himself in Class Four.
However, his unplaced efforts to date are going a long way to putting him into Class Five and the way he finished off yesterday's trial under regular rider, Eric Legrix, he'd be something to bet on in that humble grade.
Time and time again this season, the lightly raced Class Four performers have struck when taking voluntary demotions into this lower echelon.
Should Fame And Fortune do the same, especially were he to be blinkered for the first time, he'd take an awful lot of beating.
Speedy Forward had excuses on his only start to date, having worked most fluently prior to debut.
He's gone well since that run, looking a lot more together mentally and physically.
Yesterday he hit the line strongly in the final heat won by the Lawrie Fownes-traind Heading To Win and is another who is shaping as if possessed of more than enough natural ability to make his presence felt before the end of the season.
It is worth making a note of the Tony Cruz-trained griffin, Bank On It, who was given an easy time of things down the field behind Heading To Win and Speedy Forward.
He has also been moving well in trackwork and looks to be an above average recruit.
Anyone looking for a value wager in Class Six could do worse than Derek Cruz's Souper who ran third to Heading To Win.
This effort, plus a spate of better gallops, suggest he's returning to form and could surprise when next seen out - hopefully at big odds. Sheer Madness has taken time to come to himself this season.
His most recent run gave cause for encouragement and yesterday he really hit the line well when short-heading No Competitor in the second heat.
As a result of his patient methods, trainer Hill is habitually in good form at this time of the campaign.
In Sheer Madness he appears to have a relatively fresh older handicapper who is potentially well handicapped on a number of runs from last season.
Gary Ng Ting-keung looks to have a useful and speedy import in Flying Flying who ran fourth in the opening heat behind Sweetheart.
Flying Flying could be hard to shoot down when he makes his Class Two sprint debut such is his tremendous early pace.