Riyadh can maintain Chang's streak
Trainer Michael Chang Chun-wai is having a good run of late and Riyadh looks a rock-solid winner when he next steps out following another impressive second in a special-condition race over 1,650m at Happy Valley.
Riyadh showed some ability in three of his first five starts for trainer Richard Gibson, but was switched to the Chang camp in February.
The three-year-old then started to enjoy the change of scenery and looked good in winning a trial on April 5 under Olivier Doleuze, and he didn't disappoint when resuming late last month following a fast-finishing second.
Drawing a middle gate for his latest mile test, Riyadh failed to muster speed and made his run third or fourth from the rear along the fence for Doleuze and moved to midfield approaching the final bend.
He straightened three deep, shifted to the outside of Ottimo at the 200m, was taken further out when Affection bumped Ottimo at the 150m and ran on nicely when balancing up to miss by a neck over Plain Red Banner.
The gelding is a son of Darci Brahma and O'Reilly mare Tempestra.
Darci Brahma was an effective sprint/miler in the southern hemisphere with five Group One victories - four short-course efforts and a mile win in the New Zealand 2000 Guineas - and has fathered the winners Best Show (successful on the same card in a Class Two over 1,800m), Hypersonic and Holyangelholy (two at 1,200m) from eight other local starters.
His dam was winless through 12 starts, but is a sister to Irish Nova, a Group-placed sprinter over 1,200m, and half-brother to Plaudits, a four-time winner from 1,000m to 3,000m.