Victory helps bolster Asian Mile Challenge

PUBLISHED : Monday, 05 June, 2006, 12:00am
UPDATED : Monday, 05 June, 2006, 12:00am

The future of the Asian Mile Challenge was cemented in the wake of Bullish Luck's barnstorming victory in yesterday's Yasuda Kinen.

Bullish Luck was the only horse to contest three races in the four-event series that began with the Futurity Stakes in Melbourne on March 4, progressed to the UAE for the Dubai Duty Free on March 25 and then headed to Hong Kong (on May 7) and finally Tokyo yesterday. Bullish Luck missed Melbourne but contested the final three legs.

In winning the third and fourth legs, Bullish Luck cost the organisers a US$1 million bonus, but none of the participating clubs were counting the cost. They were merely excited at the opportunity.

'This will absolutely be the making of the Asian Mile Challenge,' said Mark Player, the Hong Kong Jockey Club's international racing manager. 'It's the best possible advertisement for the series and shows everyone exactly what is possible.'

Warren Brown, chief executive of the Melbourne Racing Club that hosts the Futurity Stakes, agreed. 'It's tremendous to see what Bullish Luck has done here today and I agree, the series couldn't have a better advertisement.'

Winfried Engelbrecht-Bresges, the Jockey Club's executive director of racing, said the result reflected great credit on the Hong Kong racing industry.

'It just goes to show, once again, how strong Hong Kong racing has become,' Engelbrecht-Bresges said.

'Our horses have come here today and performed with great credit.'

The Asian Mile Challenge was created in a joint venture between the HKJC and the Japan Racing Association last year, and Bullish Luck was its inaugural winner.

This year, the Melbourne Racing Club and Dubai Racing Club came on board, expanding the series to four races, with Bullish Luck winning the overall series once more.