Valley kings set to reign with Winning Sunshine
Kings of the Valley Douglas Whyte and Dennis Yip Chor-hong team up in tonight's Po Leung Kuk Centenary Cup over 1,650 metres and should take the prize with another track specialist in Winning Sunshine.
Both Whyte and Yip hold an edge over their peers around the tricky city circuit, and with gate one on the 'C' track that edge should help Winning Sunshine to his third win over the course and distance.
First-up for the season, Winning Sunshine caught the eye finishing second to Czar Of Prussia in a similar race, running on without a great deal of room to work with in the final part of the race.
That run should have topped him right off for this event and Whyte, who has won three and placed five times from 10 rides on the gelding, can win the tactical battle on the speed.
Fortune Smiles (Chris Munce) is likely to get an uncontested run at the top end this time, so tactics will be vital. With Whyte having ridden Fortune Smiles at his last two outings into minor placings, the Durban Demon will be well aware of the leader's capabilities and it would surprise if he let him get too far away.
His supporters will be hoping Winning Sunshine is on the back of Fortune Smiles all the way to the bend then ready to pounce in the straight.
The Sean Woods stable has never been in such sparkling form as the current time.
Woods will send out one of the query runners of the programme in Top Honor (Gerald Mosse).
The former German galloper came to David Hayes as a potential Derby horse but never found his best form last season in higher grades, though he ran a couple of decent races without luck.
Since he last appeared, he has changed stables, been gelded and drops to Class Three and gate two. With the stable horses all running well at present, Top Honor won't surprise at all with a forward showing, though the 1,650m may be a touch short of his preferred middle distances.
He was a winner up to 2,200m in his native land and notably was successful on soft ground so a continuation of the wet spell won't hurt his chances.
Rookie trainer Michael Chang Chun-wai will be happy that a number of his charges have run well to date without winning.
In Seasons Treasure (Robbie Fradd), he has another possibility to break the ice.
Seasons Treasure won two races early last season and showed with his effort behind Classa Win first-up this term that he is right on song to do likewise this term.
He has gate four, which should enable him to take his usual relaxed position early but cutting all the corners through the run and he will be hitting the line strongly.
Classa Win, Fortune Smiles and even Surveyor from the in-form John Moore yard also have claims in the feature event.