Classy Let Me Handle It can prove his staying prowess
Derby form has been good form and that points to the Queen Mother Memorial Cup (2,400m) today at Sha Tin being fought out by four-year-olds with the Caspar Fownes-trained Let Me Handle It ready to step up to winning in Group Three class.
Ambitious Dragon took the QE II Cup off his Derby win, Xtension took the Champions Mile off second in the classic and Let Me Handle It (Brett Doyle) and Jacobee (Jeff Lloyd) were the ones fighting out third and fourth on Derby day.
Reverting to handicap conditions that favour the up and coming runner, that should be enough to make them the horses to beat as they stretch out to 2,400m for the first time.
Really there is hardly a struck match between the pair on what we have seen of them all season, with honours one-all when they've met, but perhaps the powerful High Chaparral staying blood of Let Me Handle It will be enough to give him the edge.
To some extent, Let Me Handle It seems still a work in progress, though the immature, goofy three-year-old of last season has come a long way to be a three-time winner this term. In his earlier runs, he had a terrific turn of foot but has looked more dour as the season has progressed, which augurs well for his step in trip.
He came from near last to get past Jacobee for third in the Derby, though that was hardly a fair contest as Jacobee was cut out at the 200m mark and the John Moore-trained horse didn't get his fair crack while Let Me Handle It did. Jacobee has stayed on strongly enough at 2,000m and should not be undersold as a very real danger, but that extra 400m can be a long way, especially when your main rival looks to be wanting it.
Also heading into new territory at 2,400m is Sapelli (Douglas Whyte), but the gelding has been racing so well it would be difficult to discount him as a chance, especially after his excellent QE II Cup performance.
And the surprise packet of the race is the Derek Cruz-trained Carthage (Derek Leung ka-chun).
To date, his back story has got more attention than the horse himself, but Carthage ran very well in the Gold Cup last time, will definitely stay 2,400m well and he hasn't had the distractions of other targets this season.
Let Me Handle It has been one of the stars in the Caspar Fownes yard, winning four times for prize money of: HK$4.82m