The featured Hong Kong University Alumni Association Challenge Cup on Satur day night at Sha Tin is likely to be a real tussle judging by continuing good work by likely contenders at the track. It was a busy day yesterday for the popular Lawrie Fownes, who celebrated is birthday and was, as ever, hard at work early. But he had every reason to return from the track satisfied with the excellent progress of quality galloper, En Rapport. The gelding has put in several excellent efforts in the morning and there is no doubt that he has progressed favourably since the curtain came down on the last campaign. His well-being was underlined yesterday in a really good piece of work under Richard K. M. So and En Rapport is going to be a force to be reckoned with in the trophy race which is for Class Three gallopers over 1,600 metres. En Rapport seemed to relish the work and was cruising under So in the concluding stages of the gallop where the final quarter was timed in 24.4 with the overall clocking being 1:20. There were quicker times yesterday but the manner of the work was what mattered and there is little doubt that the ever-reliable Fownes is bringing him right to the mark for his seasonal debut. Fownes can also be pleased with the work of veteran campaigner Noble Dancer, who put in a very bold showing at his recent debut when he finished third to the Patrick Biancone-trained Top Practitioner at the Valley. He lumped topweight that night and may just have found the combination of weight and 1,650 metres a bit too much, but there was no doubting the grit of the performance. Noble Dancer has certainly taken no harm from the outing and his work yesterday showed the zest of a horse half his years. He was clocked in 1:17.4 (24.0) and Fownes may well get a race out of this one yet. Super Freighter is down to contest Saturday's feature race and he continues to impress in the mornings. The horse blossomed under Tony Cruz last season and he was given a sharp hit-out yesterday by stable jockey Douglas Whyte. Super Freighter is coming to hand sweetly for Cruz and this 52.3 dash won't have hurt him at all. He, too, looks one to consider for the HKUAA Cup. There's a world of difference between the Melbourne Cup and a Class Five race at Sha Tin but breeding brings them together. One of the top favourites for the Australian showpiece is Yippyio, top staying four-year-old in the country. His younger brother is the maiden Ascot Hero, who should be in action on Saturday in a Class Five, 1,600-metre event. Ascot Hero has done nothing to suggest he is going to go advance far in local racing but he should have enough ability not to depart the scene a maiden. He was seen to some advantage yesterday and timed in 51.5, suggesting better things may lie ahead. There was a sizzling piece of work from top Class One performer Michael's Choice, who looks fully capable of being involved in the finish of some good quality races this term. He went very well yesterday and simply flowed through the last quarter (23.1) in an excellent workout timed in 1:18.1.