Yacht Master geared for treasure hunt over longer trip
Peter Ho's debutant Yacht Master put in one of the most eyecatching performances during the busy holiday period when he finished fourth to Super Team at Happy Valley (race 252). The son of Yachtie looks one to follow after his effort over the minimum trip when he flashed home in good style despite looking seriously in need of the experience and trailing the field for the majority of the race. There is no doubt he will appreciate a move up in distance and he should be winning in the near future.
Other debutants to note from the same race are the Geoff Lane-trained runner-up Paradis and Dragon Hero, who just lacked race fitness but still finished third for Andy Leung Ting-wah.
Fairy Tale was never expected to be a factor over 1,200 metres at Happy Valley, but the dirt specialist made up ground in the home straight to be closest at the finish when fourth behind California Kid (race 246). It was a sound effort and he can be followed on the all-weather.
Lucky Lad supporters were more than a shade unlucky after he was forced to cover plenty of extra ground after being caught four wide for the entire circuit (race 251). He only just failed to beat Super Force and should make amends soon.
Prospero has had a few niggling problems, but the son of Caerleon appears back to his best after a game third behind stablemate Tenacity over 1,000 metres (race 255). His fitness will improve and he will be more competitive over 1,200 metres or further.
Martial Hero jumped at odds of 41-1 in the Class Four contest over a mile at Sha Tin on Boxing Day, but he still managed to finish a creditable second behind Quick Step (race 257). It was by far his best run so far.
Perfect Vision had not shown anything encouraging prior to his run over the dirt 1,200 metres on New Year's Day, but he may have fallen to a mark where he can be competitive judging by his fourth place behind Sir Timah (race 266). He had raced on the all-weather in the past and failed to impress, so perhaps he can confirm the improvement on turf as well over a similar trip.
Indian Taipan made steady headway when fourth to Speedy Forward over the Sha Tin mile and he leaves the impression that he will appreciate a move up to 1,800 metres or further (race 269). He is very limited but is likely to meet similar opposition and could pick up a race as a result.
Halo King Prawn has risen sharply in the handicap for his scorching maiden success (race 270), but he looks to be heading to the top and could be capable of stringing a few wins together.
It has been some time since Best Of The Best was competitive in the top flight, but the son of Rahy appears to be back in good form after coming from near-last on the home turn to finish second to Our Class (race 274). It was an excellent performance considering that the final quarter was clocked in 22.8 seconds.
Tony Cruz appears to have a nice batch of juveniles and the latest encouraging performance came at Sha Tin on Saturday with Medic Corps' first-up second to Best For All, another debutant (race 277).
Sterling Colours was another who impressed on his debut when finishing just 1.75 lengths behind Choice And Chance after covering plenty of extra ground (race 280).
Dancing Surpass looked decidedly unlucky behind Millennium Spirit when unable to get a clear run in the home straight (race 279) and should be kept safe next time, while stablemate Magical Warrior finished strongly over 1,400 metres behind Dashing Winner (race 284) and should benefit from a move up in distance.
ONES TO NOTE: Yacht Master, Sterling Colours, Magical Warrior.