Wong relives glory days with double
WONG Tang-ping relived the glory days of seasons past when monopolising the feature events at Sha Tin yesterday.
The local handler took the Indian Recreation Club Challenge Cup on 32-1 outsider Miss Piggy and immediately completed his 352-1 double when Carry On Winning unleashed a strong burst down the centre of the track to take a quality Sassoon Challenge Cup.
The double took Wong to 23 winners for the season as his stable continues to fire on all cylinders.
Wong said about Carry On Winning: ''I knew the horse was coming back to his best as he went really well over 1,400 metres last time and the drop back in distance was going to suit him.
''He also worked nicely for Greg [Childs] earlier this week and he confirmed what I'd seen in the stands after we had a chat about the work.'' Indeed, Childs had been so impressed by the feel that Carry On Winning had given him in that workout that he picked him in front of Derby winner, Super Fit, or last season's Chairman's Prize winner, Red Ruffian.
The New Zealander, one of the most accomplished jockeys to come here in recent seasons and exactly the type needed under the visiting jockeys' scheme, didn't get the run of the race from barrier 10 on Carry On Winning.
''I couldn't get to where I wanted to be in the run so I just had to ride him from where I found myself,'' he explained after racing.
''In some ways it was almost a bad ride as I was parked out wide but there was nothing else I could do. I just couldn't get in.
''Anyway, I wouldn't have wanted to be right in on the rails as the ground was pretty chopped up in there.'' Carry On Winning, though wide, travelled easily for Childs who is ideally suited to racing Hong Kong style as he quietly slips his mounts into a race without having asked them to expend any surplus energy.
It's almost a conjuring trick from the saddle.
And when Childs asked Carry On Winning to go, the response was like the response of old from this former top-notch sprinter who yesterday benefitted from a feather-weight 116 pounds.
He pulled 11/4 lengths clear of the gallant Winning Partners with Geoff Lane's Dashing putting in one of the most eye-catching displays of the season to run a short head farther back in third.
Dashing totally blew the start and was wide early on before travelling supremely well at the back of the field as they straightened for home.
From 200 metres out visiting jockey Michael Clarke appeared to not ride him out with his usual vigour and the stewards inquired into his performance.
Clarke explained his riding by saying he was inconvenienced by Dashing hanging in. The stewards accepted his explanation.
Dashing is certainly one to note next time out on the evidence of this run.
Lawrie Fownes plans to have most of his stable blood-tested following a series of lacklustre displays from a number of his runners.
Derby winner Super Fit wasn't helped by interference in running behind Carry On Winning but he still dropped out tamely yesterday.
Fownes said: ''I'm very unhappy with the way my horses have been running. They are working well, they look well but they have run far too badly to be true.
''So I'm having their blood checked on Monday and will wait for the results. It is precautionary but I really have to do it, especially as I've had one with a very high temperature.'' Quicken Away also failed to fire on his first run back after a lengthy spell on the sidelines.