IT was just like old times at yesterday's Sha Tin trackwork session with a stack of horses working and a number of them working well.
The brothers Cruz were right in the middle of it all, though each ploughs his own furrow these days.
Tony Cruz, fresh from drawing level with Basil Marcus at the head of the jockey's standings with another equitrack double on Wednesday night, was noted getting a simply outstanding response from Eddie Lo's Star Greeting, who easily pulled several lengths clear of Good Choice.
Star Greeting had missed work going into his last start when only third to Total Success but he is now back to full fitness and has never gone better. Watch out for him tomorrow.
Derek Cruz had several out there working well including two newcomers.
His Super Dancer and Lucky Glory both look to go well and should be kept safe in quinellas.
Super Dancer yesterday went appreciably better than his speedy stablemate Classic Turbo, who is habitually a good worker. He looks ready to give a good account of himself in the final event for which Alex Wong Yu-on's Winning Chance will be hard to beat.
For this final event there was also a very promising jump out down the back straight by Gary Ng Ting-keung's Electric Flash, who had good form when racing as Staff Sergeant for David Hayes in Australia.
Electric Flash ran very well first time out when far from fully wound up and has made good progress since. He is another who is a must inclusion in quinellas in tomorrow's last event.
But back to the Derek Cruz string and Lucky Glory put in a very fluent piece under stable jockey Gary Carter when pulling right away from Concert Boss and is one to note for the seventh event.
No one would begrudge either Cruz or Carter a bit of luck after a spell in the doldrums and they look to have other chances with Ming River and Run Archie Run.
This really was one of the best morning's work of the season and Ming River appears to have improved significantly. But his only trouble is that he is set to clash with Star Greeting in the fifth, for which Cruise Missile and Always Money Comes have also been going well.
Run Archie Run could represent a bit of value in the eighth race as he has worked impressively on two occasions this week.
Besides a decent ride on Electric Flash, Alan Munro has also picked up a more than useful mount in the shape of Sir Michael.
Kenny Kam's New Zealand import missed the start on his debut before running on well behind Zeus and looked appreciably fitter yesterday.
He goes into tomorrow's third event for which Lawrie Fownes' Tornadic Win is making good progress and Neville Begg's Clear Spray has been working sweetly. Clear Spray didn't appear to handle the equitrack last time out.
Ivan Allan's team were busy as usual yesterday and one of the most interesting pieces from them came from Jharna who travelled better than Turf Champ, who is normally an excellent worker.
Jharna won his last start and the way he is going, he will win his next as well.
Allan's Many Treasure also looks capable of notching another victory but maybe when back on the grass. He went better than the essentially disappointing filly, Casablanca.
When Jharna won over 975 metres at the Valley, Alex Wong Siu-tan's Excel Star ran third, putting in by far his best effort.
Those looking for a bit of class among yesterday's workers should pay heed to Optic Empire who trounced stablemate Saboatan in a solid workout.
Patrick Biancone's King Prawn also looks as if he is going to improve significantly this season.
Tomorrow's first griffin race of the season looks a lay down for Biancone's Long Run with the only bet being the quinella. With this in mind there was another really solid effort from Brian Kan Ping-chee's Executive Action yesterday morning. He did well to keep tabs on the Class Two rated Super Goal.