Highland Laddie now has it figured
By Racing Editor LAWRENCE WADEY
DAVID Oughton and Mick Kinane have been steadily accumulating winners in a most effective manner all season.
They were on the mark again on Wednesday night with Tiger's Spirit who relished the opportunity of using his speed to good measure on the equitrack.
And they look to have a couple of decent opportunities at Sha Tin tomorrow afternoon.
Highland Laddie and Figure It Out were both last-start winners for Oughton and Kinane and the way they have been working since their wins they certainly merit plenty of quinella respect in the third and seventh events.
Highland Laddie looked like being a pretty useful type in his griffin days but failed to train on last season and had been a disappointing type until showing far more resolution to short head Star Greeting last time out.
Yesterday he picked up well over his final 400 metres to clock a final section in 24.7 seconds off some solid pacework.
Others working well for this third event include the Derek Cruz-trained pair, Polygain and Run Archie Run.
Run Archie Run improved last time and Polygain is now coming to peak condition on the work tracks.
Figure It Out was asked to gallop from the gates at the top of the back straight yesterday. This should sharpen him up a bit for tomorrow's run.
He's never a great worker as he doesn't have that much pace but he looked to go more than well enough with stablemate Matinee Idol who, himself, has been working as if capable of winning another staying race.
Brian Kan Ping-chee's Executive Action should relish the move up to 1,200 metres for tomorrow's griffin event.
He was finishing best of all when second to Long Run in the first griffin event of the season down the straight 1,000 metres and looked to be crying out for more ground.
He gets an extra 200 metres tomorrow though even that may not be enough to guarantee victory.
But he is a top quinella proposition and certainly looked on good terms with himself yesterday morning as he came home in 23.8 seconds for his last 400 metres with his Class Three-rated stablemate, Star Mark.
Watch out for an improved showing from Golden Emperor in the fourth. He ran well enough on his belated reappearance and won a trial in impressive fashion a week ago.
Tony Cruz put Saboatan through a solid piece in preparation for tomorrow's quality eighth event though it remains to be seen how he will cope with his stablemate, Optic Empire, who got no ride last time and has been beating Saboatan in all their work together this season.