Golden Yield shows big improvement with solid dirt trial
Trainer Michael Chang Chun-wai will be saving his June 19 trump card for yesterday's impressive 1,050m trial winner Golden Yield, who scooted around the all-weather track to record a comfortable 11/2-length win over Five Clubs under Olivier Doleuze.
Golden Yield vied for the lead with the higher-rated Five Clubs early, before drawing clear of his on-pace rival, who in turn creamed the third-placed I Smell Money by an additional four lengths.
Chang will be champing at the bit to enter his horse in a suitable dirt race over the short course, and the extended Class Four event scheduled for June 19 appears the first suitable target for the trainer, who has led in 20 winners and has a special knack with dirt runners.
The way the Black Minnaloushe three-year-old gelding improved on the softer dirt surface, clocking 61.23 seconds, Chang will be more than quietly confident of a win when the horse gets the same conditions on race day. The only other heat was run a full second-and-a half slower, with new apprentice Alving Ng Ka-chun leading throughout on Just Fantastic in 62.70 seconds.
The Me Tsui Yu-sak-trained stablemate Seize The Day finished second, three-quarter length away, but it was the John Size-trained Fay Fay who looked to be travelling the strongest, despite being restrained by Douglas Whyte to finish eighth, six lengths further back.
Fay Fay hasn't been sighted this season after impressively winning his final griffin start last term as $1.10 favourite over 1,400m.
Size may be saying he has given up on the trainers' premiership, but his actions are speaking differently, and his younger stars all look tuned for a couple of late season kills.
Cruz leads John Moore by six wins, and Size by 11, but last year's champion trainer has good momentum, and plenty of fresh ammunition still to load.