Voyage suited by journey by journey
INTERESTING Ellen's Voyage will be the centre of attention in the third event at Sha Tin today and, given most recent form, should oblige in this Class Three contest over 1,400 metres.
To say that his last run was eye-catching would be to understate the case and the stewards saw fit to question jockey Danny Lee as to his riding of the gelding in the straight.
His explanation that he was unable to get down and ride the horse right out as it was hanging against him was noted.
Ellen's Voyage, despite hanging tendencies, would have beaten Dream Lover over the less than entirely suitable 1,030 metres on equitrack given any sort of real assistance from on top in the concluding stages.
But punters should take due heed of that run - and an equally significant effort back on March 7 when Ellen's Voyage finished a close-up fourth to Splendid Chance over today's trip.
In a three-way finish, Splendid Chance held on by a head from Lucky Swallow with Aashiq another short head away third. Ellen's Voyage was a length behind this trio and they had come clear of Nickels King with Outerwear lengths further back.
The first three over the line that day are all good performers and Ellen's Voyage, with Tony Cruz up, gave due notice with this run that he is definitely up to winning in Class Three company.
Finishing behind him were Fortune Ride, a superb winner since, and Outerwear who has run two good races in similar company.
Ellen's Voyage has been relatively lightly raced and will go into this event in very good shape. He looks like another winner for Lee who was on target with Call Sign in the final event on Wednesday night for trainer Peter Ng Bik-kuen.
Allocate is on a hat-trick but his most recent efforts have been on equitrack and over the minimum trip suggesting that this might be harder for him although he remains in good form.
Lionheart has been slightly disappointing although expectations held for the griffin winner of last season may have been slightly high.
He has run reasonable races but has been a victim of the virus which may also go a long way to explaining why he may not have come on quite as well or as high as connections hoped.
Lionheart may well be a better horse next season but must still be worth including in quinellas here, possibly along with Irish import Ace Of Trumps who is not the worst.