Kingsgate and Delpech gunning for more glory
Promising Kingsgate Glory has been a substantial improver with the addition of blinkers and he looks set to make light work of his class and distance rise in the final leg of tomorrow night's Triple Trio at Happy Valley.
The Fusaichi Pegasus youngster had the headgear added four starts back when opening his winning account before running with merit at his next two assignments after being pressured in the lead.
He then switched to the city circuit last start and was right back to his best with a dominant display in beating Travel Leader after bouncing straight on the lead under Anthony Delpech.
The three-year-old rises to 2,200 metres but he gives the impression he should have little trouble with the extended journey.
His Danehill half brother, Country Boy, attempted the same course and distance two years ago and was only beaten in the final stages by Green In Blue, who ironically will be one of Kingsgate Glory's rivals tomorrow night.
With the rise in class, the Tony Millard-trained colt gets a 12-pound drop in weight. From barrier two he should have no trouble in finding the lead and he will clearly be the one they all have to run down.
Last-start winner Matiri King looks the other potential pace influence in the race and will likely prove the toughest to hold out in the final stages.
The Dennis Yip Chor-hong-trained gelding was handed a very soft lead over the same course and distance at his last start and took full advantage to land his first success after being well rated by Howard Cheng Yue-tin.
Cheng is sure to press forward in the early stages from gate nine but is unlikely to pour the pressure on to Kingsgate Glory as the pair are the only two genuine on-speed runners in the event.
Others entitled to consideration are the honest Eye Witness, who should appreciate stepping up to this trip, Fantuzzi and Maverick.
In the opening leg, it's impossible to go past last-start winner Sabre And Gold as he should again get all favours after coming up with barrier one for Cheng.
The five-year-old had proven costly for most of the season but finally rewarded his followers over the same course and distance two weeks ago after being expertly handled by the in-form Cheng.
He takes a slight rise in weight but is not going to find this a great deal harder and can become one of the few Class Five performers to score back-to-back wins.
Likely leader Winning Pattern will prove the one to run down, while Dongguan Victory, La Merveille and Frames Depot must be kept safe.
The middle pin is clearly the toughest but the in-form Chater De Lago fits the banker bill.
The David Ferraris-trained gelding showed he was finally coming back to form when closing off nicely behind Dr Possi before landing his first success a week later when stepping to this trip for the first time.
From the good draw of gate four he should be able to park on the back of the speed and finish over the top of his rivals under the in-form Delpech.
Hardest to hold out will be All Our Way, Spaced, Durable and Bauhinia, while G-One Leading can figure in the finish if he has some early luck from a tricky barrier.