From gun draw, it's Unique Speed's night at the Valley
Unique Speed may have beaten home only two runners in his last four appearances, but he is primed to show a remarkable turnaround when he fronts up in the middle leg of tomorrow night's Triple Trio at Happy Valley.
With the TT failing to go off last Wednesday night after a tough set of results, the main prize is expected to reach HK$8 million, and with the advantage of barrier one, Unique Speed has all the makings of a solid banker.
The Manfred Man Ka-leung-trained gelding may have only managed two placings from 12 starts this season, but he now finds himself remarkably well placed in Class Four and is clearly going better than his form suggests.
He was expected to turn in an improved showing three starts back, but was out of luck after being shunted wide on the first corner, and he was then unsuited by a drop in distance and a switch to the all-weather track at his next outing.
The five-year-old failed to beat a runner home last start after again being posted off the track, but he will have no such concerns tomorrow from the prized inside alley.
Unique Speed's last success on March 21 last year came off a similar rating over this course and distance, and significantly it was the last time he came up with barrier one.
He should end up with the run of the race under Brett Prebble, and he won't get a better opportunity to notch another success.
His main danger, and an appealing double banker, is the in-form Bold Champion.
The Ricky Yiu Poon-fie-trained gelding put the writing on the wall with a sound performance behind promising Something Special two starts back, before breaking his maiden status with an every-chance success at his last outing.
He is not going to find this task any tougher and, despite a rise in weight, should be right in the finish.
Others capable of figuring in the action are Meath, Connoisseur's Love, G-One Leading and Kaiser's Choix.
The opening leg is tough, but it's hard to go past On Shan Brave when searching for a banker, despite the five-year-old being poorly drawn in gate 11.
He arrived with sound credentials from Ireland, but it has taken him over a year to finally show some form.
He indicated he was heading in the right direction with an improved effort two starts back, before landing his first local success with an every-chance win over Jolly Wongchoy last time out.
The effort indicated he was now looking for a longer distance, and he will only need a touch of luck in the early stages to repeat the dose.
His main opposition will come from Lucky Money Star, Cheerful Heart, Happy All Around and Master Master.
In the final leg, the much improved King Acrylic fits the banker bill on the back of a last-start success.
The five-year-old has been a good improver this season in registering three wins, and he is not going to find this any tougher than his last victory over Mainland Shuttle.
He should bounce straight to the lead under Jacky Tong Chi-kit and be the one they all have to gun down in the final stages.
His toughest opposition will come from Wonderful Blessing, who will appreciate a return to this track and trip, while other worthy inclusions are Lhojong, Prime Target, Warm Embraces and Amsterdam.