Ever-reliable White Jade has feature at his mercy
The John Moore-trained White Jade is a Hong Kong maiden, but that can all change in style this afternoon in the Panasonic Cup (1,400m) at Sha Tin.
The French-bred three-year-old arrived last season with smart juvenile form in England and showed his talents early when nosed out of a photo over 1,200m, but hardly had the best of luck in his races that followed.
At his only run last season over 1,400m in Class Two, White Jade (Howard Cheng Yue-tin) was never out of trouble and, when tried at longer trips afterwards, he tended to overrace but still managed another photo-finish second at Happy Valley.
That all augured well for his prospects this season as he matures, and there was nothing to change that view in his first-up third over this trip behind Berio and Beauty Flash in an extended Class Two.
That form has since been franked by Berio's strong effort on the dirt on Wednesday and White Jade should be fitter when he steps out for this assignment.
At present, the 1,400m trip looks to be the right distance for White Jade and dropping down from 124 pounds to 113 today, he should prove himself up to the stronger Class One company.
With Dream Team, Romping and Terrific Brethren all potential leaders, the speed should be sufficient to give all run-on horses their chance to finish off. With his light weight, White Jade might just have enough in his favour to be too strong at the finish of what is a competitive feature as always.
Moore has a powerful hand in the race with three of the 12 runners and White Jade's danger should prove to be stablemate Sunny King (Darren Beadman), despite his big weight.
He is dropping back in grade after an excellent first-up run, sitting wide without cover and still challenging the leaders at the 200m over 1,200m, before he ran out of steam late in the race won by Inspiration.
Beaten less than two lengths, Sunny King will appreciate the extra 200m and shapes to get an ideal trip behind the speed from gate five.
Though he is a winner only twice, Sunny King has run some cracking races in the best of company from 1,200m to a mile and stands out as the class runner of the field.
Kings Falcon (Weichong Marwing) is the third of Moore's runners and must be respected, too, coming back to what has been his best distance.
White Jade has placed three times from sevens starts and has earned: HK$751,000