Now comes the biggest assignment for Witness

PUBLISHED : Tuesday, 03 May, 2005, 12:00am
UPDATED : Tuesday, 03 May, 2005, 12:00am

Will Silent Witness see out the mile? That has been the question for most fans in recent weeks, and following his dominant victory in the Queen's Silver Jubilee Cup (race 561) over 1,400 metres, connections and supporters must be feeling reasonably confident he will do so.

It is hard to know just how much was left in reserve in the concluding stages, as Silent Witness had the field beaten a long way from home and the champ was only doing what was required out in front.

On the down side, the track bias was clearly favouring those runners on the speed, and naturally this played right into Silent Witness's hands.

In addition, most top-class sprinters can win over 1,400m, but do not always prove to be as effective over a mile. In any case, Silent Witness continues to create history, break records and it is all good for racing. No matter what the outcome, it is a real positive that Silent Witness is headed for the Champions Mile on May 14, and then hopefully for Japan.

The Derby form took a massive boost with Vengeance Of Rain providing hometown glory when landing the prestigious Audemars Piguet Queen Elizabeth II Cup (race 562).

Hong Kong has a genuine star who deserves all the plaudits when considering the high-quality field assembled. The likes of Epalo (seventh), Grand Armee (10th) and Dubai-conquering Elvstroem (ninth) were all put in their place by the Derby winner.

And it just goes to show the depth in quality when Russian Pearl (third), Super Kid (fourth) and Bullish Luck (sixth) all managed to beat those quality gallopers to the line.

Vengeance Of Rain showed just how far Hong Kong has come on the world racing stage, and how good the overseas contingent has to be to come here and win.

Meanwhile, the debut performance of Hello Pretty confirmed some positive trackwork when finishing third to Handbag Premier over 1,400m (race 556). He is looking for more ground and should prove hard to beat next time.

Capitaland ($240) displayed marked improvement when second to Brave Commander over the Sha Tin mile (race 557) and narrowly failed to open his account. He is open to more improvement and merits plenty of respect next up.

There wasn't much support for Mine Host ($910), who rattled home to finish third over 2,000m (race 560). He has had his share of problems this season but is fitter now.

There was plenty to like about the debut victory of Elegant King Prawn on Sunday over the minimum trip (race 566). He is bred to compete over a lot more ground and could be a very exciting prospect.

Care Free Prince looked a good-thing beaten when third to Pay-Day over 1,400m (race 567) but he was only issued a one-point penalty and given he remains eligible to compete in the bottom grade, he should be winning in the imminent future.

The step up to 2,000m (race 569) suited Royal Falcon, who displayed marked improvement to finish fourth.

Given the particularly slow early pace, the effort of Delightful Win ($950) was very good. He managed to finish fifth behind Golden Sun over the Sha Tin mile, but was the only runner to make ground from well back on the turn and based on this effort, looks close to a win.


Hello Pretty, Care Free Prince,

Delightful Win.