Ping has head for Vigors

PUBLISHED : Sunday, 03 October, 1999, 12:00am
UPDATED : Sunday, 03 October, 1999, 12:00am

Crowning Vigors can complete a belated hat-trick by taking tonight's sixth event on Happy Valley's Prix de L'Arc de Triomphe card.

The late maturing son of Zabeel blossomed when joining the astute and accomplished local trainer Wong Tang-ping who would have no trouble at all holding his own in any racing jurisdiction.

Crowning Vigors had always worked and looked as if he was a fair stayer in the making but he just couldn't do it on racedays until joining Ping with whom he's been a raceday revelation.

He's had two starts for two wins for him, the most recent being over tonight's 1,800-metre course and distance where he won readily by 1.5 lengths from Money Come-In and Iron Tycoon.

It was only a run of the mill Class Five affair but Crowning Vigors recorded a time which suggests he is more than capable of winning at the top of Class Four, never mind from his rating of 46 in the middle of the grade.

Indeed his Topspeed figure from that seemingly humble Class Five affair makes him the one to beat in tonight's contest.

Douglas Whyte, a prolific winning jockey for Ping over the past few seasons, retains the mount having been on board for both of Crowning Vigors' wins. And the five-year-old comes into the race off the back of some very promising trackwork and trials.

He was down to run at last weekend's meeting which was washed away by the typhoon.

It could be a blessing in disguise because he possibly came into that race just a fraction underdone but since then has trialled well and appears to have really started to come to himself this last week.

He may have most to fear from Kowloon's Blessing who has always shaped as a move to 1,800 metres would suit.

The Derek Cruz-trained gelding comes into this rock hard fit with two runs under his belt, the most recent of which saw him finish a creditable second to High Spirits. Third-placed Grand Prize has come out and won since.

Prodigy has no problems seeing out the 1,800 metres. He did hang in on his reappearance but is worth another chance as that outing should have brought him on and the extra 150 metres will help.

Golden Double could storm home late and is worth keeping safe in tierces.

His new South African trainer Tony Millard hasn't had any luck to date, indeed after Friday's meeting he is the only handler who has yet to open his account for the season.

But it is only a matter of time as his horses look extremely well and on good terms with themselves. Golden Double is a case in point.

Mr Brinker is down to a potentially competitive mark and it is significant that Felix Coetzee replaces the stable apprentice Patrick Tse.

Highland Dancer, Jade Lake, Canadian Maple and Golden Prosperity are others who could finish in the placings behind Crowning Vigors in what looks a tough tierce to solve.

Much better to back Crowning Vigors win and place and take maybe one quinella with him and Kowloon's Blessing.

Elsewhere on what appears a typically trappy Happy Valley, David Hayes' Clement Fortune is betting material in the opener.

Daylami's form appears much more solid than Montjeu's and he is hard to oppose in the Arc. El Condor Pasa is the other clear form selection.

But the ground at Longchamp is heavy, heavy, heavy and with this in mind tierce and quinella punters might want to consider the likes of Tiger Hill, Croco Rouge and Borgia as value picks to combine with Daylami and El Condor Pasa.