The John Size-trained Sight Lover has not been the kindest to punters, but Triple Trio players will look to him as a banker again in the opening leg at Happy Valley tomorrow night.
Sight Lover has been well in the betting at most of his 10 starts and has delivered only once but he got along well with Weichong Marwing last start, finishing second to Oyster over the Valley 1,650m, and the pair up again from a good draw in what looks an open event to start off the fresh TT pool with a $2 million prize on offer.
Another with serious claims looks to be maiden three-year-old Riyadh (Olivier Doleuze), who has been runner-up at both his starts for Michael Chang Chun-wai over the this course and he has his hoof right on the till. Both times he gave away a start to the race leader who went on to win and he should be hitting the line strongly.
For the placings, punters should certainly include track-specialist Ottimo (Alvin Ng Ka-chun), thereabouts in his three attempts since a drop back to Class Four, Silver Dragon, who should benefit from the removal of blinkers after running along a touch too freely in the lead last time, consistent Ambitious Treasure and a rejuvenated Easy Ahead (Ben So Tik-hung). It is several seasons since Easy Ahead's only win, leading all the way over this course, but he is showing signs that he is ready to go in again and should lead this field from the pole barrier. Two solid runs at the Valley were followed by a last-start seventh running on late over 1,200m at Sha Tin.
The middle leg offers a solid double banker in three-year-old Bundle Of Joy (Brett Prebble), despite an awkward draw, and another lightly raced runner, Beauty Sparkle (Matthew Chadwick).
The winner of two of his three starts, Bundle Of Joy looks destined for much higher in the ratings and his tactical versatility looks an important factor in this race with plenty of speed. It won't surprise if he is ridden off the pace rather than leading as he was when he won last start from Beauty Sparkle over this course.
Beauty Sparkle gets a nice weight turnaround on Bundle Of Joy for that last meeting and he has drawn the coveted barrier one. Although a year older than Bundle Of Joy, Beauty Sparkle is also one with some upside after only six starts and he is close to a win.
But there is a long list of place chances to consider, with Croesus (Tommy Berry), Mr Ginger (Zac Purton), Cour Valant, Diamond Elegance and Formula Won all capable.
The final leg looks a tricky one, but banker seekers could do worse than settle on Supreme Essence (Doleuze). The Michael Chang-trained gelding has raced into some form over sprint courses with a third to Impeccable and fifth to Sea The Pearls but goes to a more suitable 1,650m this time. That's the kind of distance over which he was a three-time winner in France so we should see the best of Supreme Essence now.
It would be hard to leave out the likes of Flying Unicorn (Purton) and Intellectualstride (Gerald Mosse), who are racing well over the trip, and Happy Champion's debut at the extended Valley mile when finishing fifth after being squeezed out early was sufficient to convince Prebble to stick with him.
The honest eight-year-old My Home Town gets the benefit of Dicky Lui Cheuk-yin's 10-pound claim and looks a likely leader in the race.
The eight-year-old's latest effort was sound when fourth to Galaxy Prancer after playing front runner and he looks a compulsory inclusion as well from barrier two.