He was once the man who delivered a first defeat to Silent Witness, and after Gerald Mosse stunned fans by engineering the downfall of another Hong Kong idol in the Jockey Club Mile at Sha Tin yesterday, he dedicated Beauty Flame’s victory to Red Cadeaux.
Pictures of a stricken Mosse after he pulled Red Cadeaux to a stop at the 200m mark in the Melbourne Cup three weeks ago when the grand old horse had faltered under him, showed how affected he was as a horse lover.
And after Beauty Flame’s shock victory over Able Friend, he quickly turned to the globetrotting marvel he had partnered 16 times in the last four years all over the world.
“I dedicate this win to Red Cadeaux. It’s hard to talk about, it’s hard to face but this is reality,” he said of the injury that has ultimately led to the euthanising of Red Cadeaux rather than allowing him to suffer.
“They would have tried everything to save his life. Mr Arculli, the owner, did his best and everybody tried to help but there wasn’t much we could do. It is very sad, he was a champion and everybody loved him. He was a very special horse to me, you start to feel something special when you travel worldwide together and have that communication.”
On the day when Hong Kong’s best horses are expected to show their mettle for the Longines Hong Kong International Races in three weeks’ time, the one horse who had been seen as already home and hosed was the one Mosse relegated to third, Able Friend.
At odds of 1.3, Able Friend gave his usual big start but failed to make up the ground this time and trainer John Moore wasn’t putting up excuses.
“Joao Moreira thought there were some excuses for the defeat but for me he was beaten on his merits – it was a bit of a flat run, he still ran great sectionals and hopefully he will bounce back in his target race, which is still three weeks away,” said Moore.
Caspar Fownes had Military Attack “pain-free” in the Jockey Club Cup and the seven-year-old reversed roles with last year’s winner Blazing Speed, while the Jockey Club Sprint went to Richard Gibson-trained Gold-Fun for ‘imported’ rider Christophe Soumillon, who flew in for the day to partner the gelding.
“Huge credit to the vets here,” said trainer Richard Gibson. “Gold-Fun had surgery last season and it’s a huge credit to get the horse back on track. We left as much weight on him for today as we could, that was intentional.and the big objective is in three weeks’ time.”
Moreira's day fell short of his usual heights and it was trainer Tony Cruz who dominated the day with four winners, although only the surprise with Beauty Flame in the big ones. Still, Cruz was happy with even his defeated runners and expects to have a rare representation in all four internationals on December 13.