Demuro has Courage and Size on his side for Triple Trio
In-form Italian jockey has his best opportunity to get on the scoreboard for leading trainer with a horse that has gone a long time between drinks
Mirco Demuro has yet to win for John Size but he has been around the mark and with a perfect draw and a light weight he can break through on Red Courage in the middle leg of the Triple Trio at Happy Valley on Wednesday night.
Size has used a greater than usual number of jockeys this season as he drifts away from the reliance on Douglas Whyte, with Tye Angland, Olivier Doleuze, Brett Prebble and Karis Teetan all riding multiple winners for the stable. Now, the in-form lightweight Demuro is getting his chance too.
Demuro has placed twice for Size from three rides, but he gets on Red Courage at the right time.
Red Courage is owned by former Hong Kong Jockey Club chairman Ronald Arculli, who has had plenty of experience racing imports from the northern hemisphere, and is obviously mindful of the extra time required for them to find their feet.
In saying that, Red Courage's path to approach the bottom of Class Four has been somewhat unusual.
The son of Marju paid the price for his Griffin success in his first season, jumping into Class Three on 65 against the older horses in his second term, and like so many horses from the Size stable, took an eternity to drop to a competitive level in the ratings.
After struggling through last term, Red Courage didn't show much in his first five outings this time in either, but has turned things around at his last two starts.
Even though Red Courage notched his maiden victory at Sha Tin, he seems a horse better suited to the Valley 1,200m. He also seems better than a record of one from 22 starts would indicate.
The five-year-old has the right run pattern to take advantage of the low draw, and should be positioned in a one-off spot better than midfield - ready for whatever speed eventuates in a race with plenty of on-speed runners but no obvious leaders.
China Angel (Douglas Whyte) looks the main threat, coming off two solid runs this term. Also include Make It (Derek Leung Ka-chun), Ambitious Glory (Joao Moreira) and consider Nazakat's Lad (Andreas Suborics) at odds.
The opening leg is a tough Class Five over 1,200m where it might pay to go without a banker, given the unreliable nature of some of the main chances.
Take Novel Start (Tye Angland), Cosmo One (Jacky Tong Chi-kit), Ray Of Gold (Demuro), Flying Keeper (Suborics) and Diamond Angel (Whyte) - or some sort of combination of the above.
The anchor leg, a Class Three also over 1,200m, makes its way into the Triple Trio - the seventh race on the rare nine race card - and My Name Is Bond (Moreira) can go back-to-back in what shapes as a weak event.
The Caspar Fownes-trained six-year-old came with a wet sail to just get up last time out, and with the in-form Moreira replacing the suspended Zac Purton, he goes in as banker from gate two.
Of the others, Rainbow Fighter (Demuro) was knocked down last time and is a chance from the better draw, while Happy Yeah Yeah (Brett Prebble), Sunny Fay (Leung) and the likely leader Golden Bauhinia (Teetan) can be considered.