Trainer John Size, who is seeking a remarkable eighth title, has another smart one in Fighter Class in his bag of tricks. The gelding showed big improvement from his debut run following his Class Three Hong Kong University Alumni Association Challenge Cup (1,200m) third behind the promising My Favorite at Sha Tin.
Fighter Class was two-to-three deep, about eight lengths off the leader Hinyuen Paladin, and picked up nicely over the final 200m to snatch third.
He showed he had come on significantly for his first-up run, judging by his fitness and appearance in the mornings, and just like any other of Size's new recruit, he will only get better with racing.
The three-year-old arrived following one win from three starts in New Zealand under the same name for trainer Jenna Mahoney.
Fighter Class is by Danehill stallion Spartacus and Masterclass mare Vintage Class.
Spartacus was a double Group One winner in Europe of three races over 1,200m to a mile and was a full-brother to past Hong Kong Derby champion Johann Cryuff.
He has successfully fathered six winners from nine local starters, including Scarlet Camellia (six wins up to a mile), Sea Prince (four wins at 1,200m and 1,400), Kingston Spartacus (three wins over 1,600m and 1,800m) and Cool Bean (1,800m win at the Valley).
Unraced Vintage Class has produced three other foals by Magic Ring, including the consistent New Zealand duo Mill Duckie and Mill Vinnie.
On his pedigree, Fighter Class looks a versatile performer who should improve when stepping up in distance.