Go baby go is a major player
Champion jockey Douglas Whyte made a clean sweep of the straight course races yesterday, sealing the pair with exciting young sprinter Go Baby Go in the Yan Oi Tong Cup.
The Dennis Yip Chor-hong-trained Go Baby Go had won with some comfort in his Class Four debut and then again with a light handicap in Class Three, but he was presented with more of an assignment under 133 pounds yesterday and rival jockey Jeff Lloyd (Ultimate Winners) was only too well aware of that.
'I knew that with 19 pounds between the two favourites at the weights, and both drawn near the outside, that Jeff would probably come out looking to make me carry the weight and he did,' said Whyte. 'He had one plan in mind and laid it down early but I just came out positively, tagged him most of the race and knew that my horse would have the class if I made sure that Ultimate Winners didn't get any sort of break.'
The two favourites settled down to what promised a serious war at one stage, but Go Baby Go came up trumps, clearing away in the last 100m to win by more than a length from Ultimate Winners, who clung on to second.
'Go Baby Go's temperament has been the thing that I thought could hinder his progress, but he's taken another step today - mentally, he was perfect,' Whyte said. 'He didn't sweat up before the race, he's getting better all the time and he knew what he was there for when it looked like being a ding-dong finish. He had too much strength and ability and the way he's gone today I have no doubts he can run 1,200m out. That's how relaxed he was and he has come a long way from when he started.'
Go Baby Go was the first leg of a race-to-race double for Yip, who followed up with Costa Del Sol for Zac Purton. Whyte didn't have quite the same level of praise for Class Four winner Lifeline Elite, and the Demon can take plenty of credit for the maiden victory of a horse who has shown a lot of short course speed but not a great deal of toughness in a brief career so far.
'I parked him in behind them and the trick with him is to keep him together and try not to use him too early because he isn't that strong,' Whyte said. 'But he's broken through and he may be able to find a race here and there but he seems quite limited.'