Young Ho strikes back with a vengeance
Apprentice Vincent Ho Chak-yiu has been jumping out of his skin to get back in the saddle rather than merely help carry the saddles for his master Caspar Fownes, and the youngster's enthusiasm was rewarded with another blistering treble yesterday.
Ho returned from a careless riding suspension at last Wednesday's Happy Valley meeting and, after a frustrating resuming meeting in town - where he had three rides for a second and third placing - was able to storm back into the winner's circle on the bigger track.
'It has been frustrating to not ride over the last few meetings, and then to come back with a couple of minor placings really had me keen to come out and win today,' Ho said. 'I'm only two wins away from losing my 10-pound claim now, and hopefully I'll manage to do that in the coming weeks.'
Ho struck form in the opening event, making full use of his maximum weight claim to drive Epee De Hua to a half-length victory for trainer Me Tsui Yu-sak.
Peter Ng Bik-kuen then made use of the youngster to give Real Supreme the winning advantage in the third event - the Tai O Handicap - in which Ho nailed victory by a short head.
Fownes must have been shaking his head as he watched his apprentice's weight claim slip through his fingers like gold dust in the early races, but Ho was soon able to ride one for his master and completed his treble on Windicator Returns.
'Caspar has been really nice to me and has offered great support - and I wouldn't want to be doing my apprenticeship for anyone else,' Ho said. 'Before I went out on Windicator he was joking around asking me if I was going to ride any winners for him before I lost my 10 pounds. Luckily we were just able to hold on for the boss and the horse did well to win after a tough run on the speed.'