Departing Callan can beat off his opposition

PUBLISHED : Sunday, 18 March, 2012, 12:00am
UPDATED : Sunday, 18 March, 2012, 12:00am


A wide-open Mercedes-Benz Hong Kong Derby day programme is reflected in an anyone-could-win-it Jockey Challenge market, with three riders jostling for favouritism.

Neil Callan, Douglas Whyte and Jeff Lloyd all have strong claims, but it is the Irishman Callan - on the final day of a successful short-term contract - who can take the prize.

He rides the John Moore-trained Dominant in the main event and has a strong support card among his six other rides. Callan should farewell Hong Kong on a high.

He has the advantage of riding Dominant in four starts back in England and is adamant the colt will be hitting his peak today.

A pair of Sean Woods-trained three-year-olds are solid chances for Callan, with Percy Jackson a colt with obvious upside, and Radiomarelli, who ran a great race at odds last time out. He has drawn perfectly in two at his third start and seems a 'can't miss' prospect for Jockey Challenge points.

The final ride of Callan's current stint, during which he has ridden 12 winners, will be Moore's Straight Gold, an erratic but talented individual.

Rounding out Callan's rides are a trio of outsiders: How Wonderful, Happy Champion and Noble Defeater.