Trainer Ricky Yiu Poon-fai and connections of top all-weather sprinter Dynamic Blitz are hoping for an 11th-hour invitation to Dubai for the Golden Shaheen in three weeks after the seven-year-old grabbed an oh-so-rare opportunity at home.
Dynamic Blitz (Olivier Doleuze) came from near-last to win the Association Of Hong Kong Racing Journalists Challenge Cup (1,200m), one of only a couple of chances he gets off his 100-plus rating each season on the surface, where his record reads six wins from 10 starts.
On turf, Dynamic Blitz's only success came on debut in Class Three, but connections appeared to have hit on a good plan in 2011, when they targeted Dubai's international carnival and the gelding won the Group Three Alshindagha Sprint on Tapeta.
'From the start, Olivier and I wanted to follow the same path as last year because there are no races here for him,' Yiu said. 'But the owner decided he didn't want to pay the travelling costs. Still, he said if we can win this race, perhaps we will still get an invitation to the Golden Shaheen.'
Their hopes for that may hinge on events overnight at Meydan's Super Saturday.
'I already have Eagle Regiment in the Al Quoz, so it would be great to have another ride,' Doleuze said. 'He is getting old and doesn't have early speed like he had before but his action is very good. He only gets one go per year now and carries a lot of weight against younger horses here but, at his top, he can win.'
Doleuze almost swept the three all-weather events to further confirm his prowess on the surface, where he wins more races than any other jockey most seasons.
Yesterday, he scored with the Richard Gibson-trained Turin Champion as well as Dynamic Blitz, after Class Fiver King Of Fish II was run down late in the opening dirt contest. Gibson was giving him the plaudits for an 'ice cool, brave and patient' ride on Turin Champion.
'I had no room to come through in the straight for a long time, but that might have flattered him - if he had come out earlier his run might have ended too soon,' the jockey summed up.'