Punters feel cost of Allan double

Robin Parke

TRAINER Ivan Allan had a 200-1 double at sunny Sha Tin yesterday, helped crack Australian rider Darren Gauci to a similar twosome, and left punters wondering just what had hit them.

Allan, a master of the training craft in Singapore and Malaysia for years and an internationally-known owner, sent out Jade Signet (8-1) with Gauci to win the 1,400-metre, Class Five fifth event - and then sent punters heading for the exits when 25-1 chance Insider took the final event.

A sizeable number of Hongkong punters expected Allan to win the Class Three final event - but not with Insider. He was also represented in the race by Natural Heritage, 4-1 second favourite with Tony Cruz up.

But the race was run to suit Frankie F. C. Lor on the winner. There was a very strong pace set and the long straight suited the winner who was second last on straightening but flew home over the final 150 metres to collar newcomer Should Run For Me (6-1), who looked the winner at the 200-metre mark.

Humdinger made up good ground, too, to take second place from a weakening Should Run For Me who again showed how tricky it can be for newcomers to win at the first time of asking here.

Gauci, stable rider for Lawrie Fownes, is enjoying an excellent first season here and carried off the feature race on the programme, the Hongkong Club Challenge Cup, on 5-1 chance Super Fit.

The handy Australian import is trained by Fownes who said: ''He was drawn very wide at Happy Valley last time and did not like it at all.

''This was much more what he was after today and from his rails draw we were very confident he would be right there,'' added Fownes.

Super Fit won comfortably but Owner's Dream (60-1) sprang a surprise by running the quinella for Mick Kinane. The newcomer looks a reasonable horse but was felt to be in need of the run following trackwork and trials.