Jade Fortune hasn’t quite got the job done yet but the Manfred Man Ka-leung-trained chestnut gets another chance to put that right in the Sports Club Diamond Jubilee Challenge Cup (1,650m) at Happy Valley on Wednesday night.
Punters have put their faith in Jade Fortune (Zac Purton) at his last few over the Valley extended mile but finished with their tickets as the best he could do were close seconds to High Volatility and Happy Life.
But all of his recent appearances had something to like about them and particularly the latest, when Jade Fortune looked to settle better than he had been and, if he has now learned to relax, then that is the fast track to getting a score on the board.
Happy Life was just a fair run at Sha Tin on Sunday and didn’t give much of a recommendation for the form but overlook that – Happy Life’s better runs have been at Happy Valley and everything else about race 638 looked a nice pointer.
It was a well-run contest and the first two put three lengths between themselves and third-placed Thunder Stomp (Chad Schofield), a significant rival again in this race.
There are likely forward runners in Thunder Stomp, Beauty Love, Volitation (Brett Prebble) and Wisky (Joao Moreira) but it doesn’t look a situation where they will fight for the front so, from gate four with an even pace, Jade Fortune should land in the first five or six without having to be pushed to be there.
In recent races, Unicorn has been circling the field from the back at the 800m so he will put more pressure into the lead pace at that stage and that will suit Jade Fortune well.
Some softening up of the leaders means Purton will be able to hold on to Jade Fortune for a little longer before launching the strong finish he has produced at three of his last four starts and that should be enough to prevail.