Ping prepares Vigors for Crowning glory
Crowning Vigors can anchor Triple Trio bets on Sunday night's Happy Valley Arc meeting.
Normally horses joining accomplished trainer Lawrie Fownes are the ones that improve significantly.
Indeed of all the trainers in town, following horses on their first or second starts since joining, Fownes has provided a rich vein of profit over the years. Top Practitioner, an 8-1 second to Owners' Glory, was the most recent example.
In Crowning Vigors' case, it was the move from Fownes to Wong Tang-ping which coincided with an improvement in the son of Zabeel. To be fair to Fownes this may have happened anyway as Zabeel's progeny can be late maturing.
Whatever the reason, Crowning Vigors has blossomed, notching emphatic victories on his only two outings for Ping, the latest of which came over Sunday night's 1,800-metre course and distance.
Crowning Vigors appears to have continued to improve with a recent barrier trial on the dirt appearing to be right out of the top drawer.
Crowning Vigors remains in the middle of Class Four and the way he's shaping it would be no surprise to see him as a top of Class Three stayer by the end of the campaign.
Kowloon's Blessing, so consistent for Derek Cruz but without a win to his name, must come into the TT reckoning, especially with Basil Marcus on top.
Mr Brinker is down to a good mark and should be suited by 1,800 metres at the Valley in the middle of Class Four. He needed the run first up and Felix Coetzee now takes over from the apprentice.
Jade Lake is another on a competitive mark while Prodigy should strip fitter for his reappearance as should Golden Prosperity who lurks dangerously at the foot of the weights.
Cossack could be the best banker in the third event which opens the TT.
He finds winning tough but is never far away and didn't have much luck when third last time behind Cigar King and First Honour who appears to have turned the corner for Fownes due to the gear change.
Super Fortune is improving with each run and, with plenty of stamina on his dam's side, it was no surprise to see him appreciate the 1,800 metres last time.
Shine Of Kowloon should go close for the Derek Cruz-Marcus connection and is probably the other banker candidate in this Class Five contest.
Melrose Star, Popular Acclaim, Super Lord and Iron Tycoon appear the other main chances.
Down the card, Likety Win, The Mighty Sword, Nansen and Charity First could be the leading contenders in the fourth, the TT's middle pin, from Dragon Power, The Rich Man and Fruitful Trip.
The Mighty Sword is weighted to reverse recent form with Likety Win but the latter is improving.
Nansen doesn't know how to run a bad race while Charity First remains on a good mark.
Dragon Power improved last backend but might just need the run.
The Rich Man probably has the strongest form from last season but hasn't quite fired so far while Fruitful Trip appears in great order.
Win Academy has been looking for a mile but it's hard for these youngsters at the Valley against the seasoned handicappers.
Maiden Partiking became the latest defector from the former Patrick Biancone stable yesterday when he joined three other ex-stablemates in the yard of David Oughton.
Partiking is owned by Jorge D'Almeida, who bought Partipral after the then Spanish-owned stayer won the International Vase.