My Goal makes up for Hall's sour start
Trainer David Hall was looking for something to turn his frown upside down after Wasabisabi's extraordinary opening race defeat yesterday, and it arrived mid-afternoon when staying-bred My Goal made it two wins on end in the Mody Handicap.
The son of Japan Cup winner, Jungle Pocket, had won over 1,200m at his last outing to break his maiden status, but My Goal (Howard Cheng Yue-tin) revelled in the step to 1,400 metres this time around and was a more professional proposition. 'I said after he won last time how he has been very weak and difficult to keep condition on, which has held back his development and it is the reason why I haven't been able to stretch him beyond short sprints. He just couldn't have coped with it physically,' Hall said.
But the rising five-year-old is looking stronger and tougher than previously and Hall believes My Goal's career is only just beginning now.
'When you looked at him in the parade yard today, he looked like a more mature horse, like a more professional horse and that's how he raced,' he said.
'Even when he won the 1,200m, he got back out of it and had to do it the hard way, but going to 1,400m today we were able to put him into the race more.
'I think the penny has dropped and next season he should be able to tackle a mile.
'He'll probably have one more before the end of the season now that he's racing so well.'
But Wasabisabi's defeat had the Australian wondering at the quality of the opposition as much as marvelling at his own sprinter's performance to give 10 lengths to the winner, Golden Bauhinia, from the halfway mark after being poleaxed by another runner at the start.
'You just don't see them do that and get beaten a length and a half - maybe the opposition was not that good or maybe he's better than I thought, but in 1,000m races horses don't make up 10 lengths like that,' Hall said.
Monkey off the back
Howard Cheng finally breaks the ice after a lean period. Wins he has registered after yesterday's double: 30