THE Remy Martin XO Cup at Sha Tin on Sunday was robbed of much of its glamour yesterday with the news that brilliant sprinter Winning Partners would not run.
Trainer Neville Begg will not declare his International Bowl-winning star this morning as a precautionary move and will aim him for Happy Valley instead.
Disappointed jockey Greg Childs said: 'Nobody knows this horse better than Neville and he just wasn't fully happy with him.
'Winning Partners may have picked up a minor virus or something like that, but he was just not 100 per cent.
'His main target, of course, is the International Bowl and not running on Sunday will not affect that with the Happy Valley race coming up.
'You obviously don't run horses if you are not happy with them and Winning Partners has had a couple of problems over the seasons.
'It would be no good to have him run when not 100 per cent and then have him really go amiss with no chance to go for the Bowl.' An exciting winner of his only start this season, Winning Partners had been in superb form at the track.
Trainer Patrick Biancone declared last night there were no problems with Helene Star, who also looks back to his best form after a last start win.
'Helene Star will start and I am pleased with the way he has been going,' said Biancone.
Meanwhile, Apprentice jockey Eddie W.M. Lai's appeal against the nine-month disqualification for not allowing Castlepeaktreasure to run on its merits will be held at Jockey Clb headquarters on Monday.