Champion jockey Basil Marcus is two short of a landmark 500 Hong Kong winners and his determination to keep his title could see a long-standing record fall. Marcus slipped one winner behind compatriot and arch-rival Douglas Whyte on Saturday night at Happy Valley but the intense fight for this year's title, which looks like going all the way to the line, will almost certainly see a new record established. Multiple former Hong Kong champion jockey Gary Moore, now training in Australia, holds the record for the greatest number of winners ridden in a single season - 81 in the 1979-1980 season. Whyte is now on 66 and Marcus has one fewer with 20 race meetings remaining this season. Australian trainer David Hayes, odds-on to win the trainers' title, said: 'I think Basil has done an amazing job. 'He is as determined as he ever was and he is fighting to keep his title. It is going to be a great end to the season.' It is virtually impossible for an expatriate jockey to ride 500 winners because they are usually not in Hong Kong long enough to make such a number feasible. Seven-time champion Moore and local legend Tony Cruz, who had it between them for almost all of the 1970s and early 1980s, did it but there were not enough race meetings held in earlier professional days to make it possible. Marcus has a battle on his hands to keep his title as Whyte, backed by Cruz and with virtually a full book every raceday, rides as if his life depends on the results. He said: 'The title would mean a lot to me and I would never try to deny that. It would be a real honour. But it is not something that I would be thinking about every day. 'I tend to take it from raceday to raceday because you are looking at rides, working horses, riding them and there's not that much time.' The odds on Moore's record falling must be getting shorter by the day. It requires Whyte to ride 16 winners in 20 racedays if he does not fall foul of the stewards or is out of the saddle through injury. And there are not that many race meetings from which either Marcus or Whyte would walk away winless. Should Moore's record fall, it will be a singular achievement. Although there are a handful more race meetings now than previously, the competition is much more intense. And Moore was backed by the powerful stable of his father, George, which quite simply ruled Hong Kong racing for a decade.