Diamond to sparkle for French duo
FRENCH supremos Patrick Biancone and Gerald Mosse top their respective championship tables and should garner another winner in the final event at Happy Valley tonight where topweight Diamond Forever bids for a second successive victory.
There are 10 runners involved in this Class Two, 1,650-metre event but it is difficult to imagine a weaker race for this grade with a number looking not ready or patently out of form.
That certainly cannot be said for Diamond Forever who ran a cracking race last time over 1,400 metres on the equitrack surface to win by a head from Purple Gold.
Diamond Forever actually claimed the David Hill-trained runner-up very close home and, as he has shown in the past, will appreciate the step up in distance here.
Diamond Forever looks a typical Irish import who has taken some time to blossom but he has clearly held his form and there is every reason to believe he can come off best in this mediocre struggle.
Diamond Forever won course and distance late last season in Class Three but merely confirmed the fairly widely held belief that he was a galloper of some potential who required time.
He started over the Valley mile early this season and did look in need of the run when finishing just over two lengths off smart winner Entrepreneur in fourth place.
Diamond Forever was second last to the straight and had an impossible task against the winner but ran on fairly and followed that up with his last start success on equitrack.
He has gone up nine pounds for that win but is, at least, a proven weight carrier as he lumped 140 lbs to victory in his Valley success late last season.
With Mosse riding in quite brilliant form and the Biancone string in top notch condition, there are not likely to be fancy odds about the selection but he should prevail.
Champion trainer John Moore's Able Quest might prove hardest to beat as he, too, is a useful performer in this grade.
A winner over the Sha Tin mile earlier this season he has run at the Valley before without success, but that was before he really found out what winning was all about.
He has been working along impressively and may well give Diamond Forever most to do.
Club jockey John Marshall notched up a double at Sha Tin on Saturday and will be hopeful of keeping the run going with Easy Fit, also involved here.
The horse has ability and undeniable claims but may just be that bit better for the run. He has had one run this time in - course and distance - and definitely needed it.
Since then his work has been promising and he must remain a solid tierce chance on his form of last season.