Rainbow Chic can profit from draw
Just how well this year's crop of four-year-olds stack up against the general horse population faces a few acid tests on Sunday at Sha Tin - not least in the middle pin of the Triple Trio - with half the field coming off unplaced runs in the Group One Hong Kong Derby.
We will get a chance to see how accurate those "world's richest Class Two" jibes were, in an actual Class Two contest, with five horses backing up from the Derby and coming back to 1,800m. The Caspar Fownes-trained Rainbow Chic (Brett Prebble) finished closest of them last start in fourth and can act as a banker, getting a good draw (three) in what should be a suitably run race.
Rainbow Chic had his chance in the Derby, although he raced in restricted room in the straight. Finishing 11/4 lengths behind Akeed Mofeed at level weights doesn't look like bad form when you consider the Derby winner will have his supporters in the Audemars Piguet QE II Cup later in the day.
Watch for Poetic Justice as he has drawn wide in each of his three starts and got a long way back in the Derby from gate nine, but produced the fastest final 400m split (22.76s) in a muddling-run race.
President Lincoln deserves another chance, and if the four-year-olds don't aim up, equal top-weight Same World (Douglas Whyte) could figure dropping back in grade - last time he was in Class Two he won over the course and distance.
In the opening leg, a Class Four over 1,600m, Malayan Pearl (Tye Angland) finally draws a gate at his third start and can safely go in as a banker. This time gate five is a relative luxury in a race where he should get some tempo as well. Include on-pace runners Approve (Prebble) and Mark Two (Tim Clark), despite them drawing wide, and throw in The Fast Lane (Weichong Marwing) from gate three.
In the final leg (1,400m event), All You Wish (Whyte) has drawn wide but his opposition are so weak it makes him a clear stand-out as a banker.
It's hard to know where to look after that - the two standby runners would be next in should they get a run. Throw in Owners' Pride (Tommy Berry) along with Ho In One (Zac Purton) and Amber Dragon (Olivier Doleuze).
Read Michael Cox’s blog – Future employment options for King Of Class Five Andy Leung. Go to: http://www.scmp.com/michael-cox
(1) Good Times Roll, (2) Archer's Bow, (11) Gorgeous Life, (12) Fastplus Master.
(2) Regency Champion, (5) Boy Oh Boy, (6) Let Me Go, (7) Sichuan Exec.
(2) Peri Peri Saffron, (4) Young Warrior, (5) Affection, (10) Real Champion.
(2) The Fast Lane, (3) Mark Two, (6) Approve, (7) Malayan Pearl.
(1) It Has To Be You, (3) President Lincoln, (4) Bubble Chic, (5) Rainbow Chic.
(4) Formula Won, (5) Ho In One, (6) All You Wish, (12) Honey Princess.
(1) Lucky Nine, (2) Time After Time, (5) Cerise Cherry, (9) Rich Tapestry.
(1) Ambitious Dragon, (3) Eishin Flash, (5) Thumbs Up, (13) Sajjhaa.
(2) Genuine Leader, (3) Royal Partner, (5) B Choice, (6) Roman Legend.
(1) Little Men, (5) Enthusiasm, (6) Engrossing, (7) Golden Scalpel.