Quality animals and fast going is the simple story behind the 2,000-metre track record set by London News in the Queen Elizabeth II Cup at Sha Tin on Sunday. With local hero Privilege in the field, a solid pace is a certainty, and the admirably consistent Ivan Allan-trained galloper didn't disappoint at the weekend. The sectional times of 25.8, 23.8, 23.8, 23.3 and 23.6 seconds confirm the even tempo of the contest. But, as is always likely to be the case in this quality of race, Privilege was there to be shot at. Under a copybook ride by Douglas Whyte, the South African pairing moved smoothly throughout, just a couple of lengths off the lead, and, asked to make his move late, London News only had to be pushed out to set a new distance standard of two minutes and 0.3 seconds. With the winning time equating to a Topspeed rating of 102, there is no doubt it was a quality effort and as a time performance it rates 10 points superior to that achieved by Overbury in last year's running over 2,200 metres. Although he has clearly earned the chance to continue his career against the top company in Europe, he will need to produce speed figures around 14 points superior if he is to reward connections for their sporting plan to send him to England. Privilege (96) continues to be a joy to follow - he's the most game and gutsy horse in training (possibly anywhere in the world) and he doesn't know when to give in. This was the fourth time this season he has recorded a speed figure in the 90s. This resolute galloper has now failed to place just five times in 29 starts, a fact that has clearly not been lost on the betting public - he jumped at 50-1 to win but paid just $27 for making the frame. Frankie Dettori felt Annus Mirabilis ran 'flat' and it was later reported that the Godolphin-owned horse had returned with a nasal discharge. Although it would be churlish to take anything away from the front two, both those points are reflected in his Topspeed rating of 95, a speed figure at least 15 points below his best. In short, a peak Annus Mirabilis should have shown more reserves at the finish than he did on Sunday. On the home front, Oriental Express (93) clocked his best Topspeed rating to date and Deauville (89) also lost no caste in defeat, finishing a creditable sixth in a quality event. The day kicked off with a couple of Griffin races that promise to offer plenty of betting opportunities in future. Victory Mount landed the 1,400-metre Holyrood House Plate in the style of a potential star, and a time figure of 72 leaves no doubt that the run was as good as it looked. Taurus could hardly have been more impressive in the Balmoral Castle Plate and, considering the manner of his three-length victory, an initial speed figure of 55 stamps this Lawrie Fownes-trained youngster as a smart performer in the making.