Front runners make full use of track bias at Sha Tin
Every season at this time of year the track bias suiting front runners becomes prevalent with the summer grass starting to come through and that was the case at Sha Tin last Saturday where on pace and on the rail was clearly the place to be.
Taking into account the state of the track, there was plenty of merit in the victory of Caspar Fownes-trained Hail The Storm (pictured), who notched his first win (race 591) in style.
He looked a different horse with the blinkers applied for the first time. The three-year-old gelding has performed admirably in his first season, and following this win finds himself on a mark of 92. There is no doubt he has the makings of a potential Derby horse for next season.
In the same event, Sanziro came from last on the turn to finish sixth and there was plenty of merit in his effort.
Syllabus shrugged his maiden status in good style when landing the Templars Handicap over 2,000m (race 588).
He came from back in the field, and made a run around the field, thereby defying the track bias in more ways than one. He has a bright future and should rise through the ranks.
Although Jubiloso finished third to Champ Dragon over 1,400m (race 586) he remains eligible for Class Five and should prove too strong.
A lot of credit must go to Robbie Fradd with the drastically slow sections he put together on Saturn in the Queen Mother Memorial Cup (race 589) over 2,400m. Fownes has worked overtime to settle him down and the fact he managed to clock a final 400m in 22.4 seconds gave those chasing no hope whatsoever.
How much can be read into the form of the race is debatable, but Saturn is clearly a force at the highest level if he continues to remain relaxed.
The fast early pace did not help the cause of Night Ninja when competing over the all-weather mile (race 580) last Wednesday.
He ran well to finish third to Magic Touch and there should be a race in him on the specialist surface.
Byron (fourth) showed some improvement and may be one to consider next time.
ONES TO NOTE:
Sanziro, Jubiloso, Byron.