'I was very surprised to win my first cup,' says Tong after justifying Allan's faith At only his third ride back from shoulder damage sustained in New Zealand during the summer, little Jacky Tong Chi-kit was all that stood in defiance of the South African tidal wave at Happy Valley last night. Fresh from a clear domination of Sha Tin last weekend, South African jockeys all but made the night their own, with a treble to Douglas Whyte and doubles for Glyn Schofield and Anton Marcus. But they missed out in the feature of the night, as thrilled teenager Tong claimed the American Club Challenge Cup on the Ivan Allan-trained outsider Flying General. The pint-sized rider crashed when his mount had a bleeding attack in New Zealand in July and was only cleared last week to return to the saddle in races. Tong's second race winner, Flying General was specked late in betting at 22-1 and surprised no one by showing high speed, but stunned many, including his rider, when he outgunned favourite Paobridge (Schofield) in the lead, then drew clear of Winning Counter to deny Whyte a four-timer. 'I was very surprised to win my first cup race,' Tong beamed. 'On the home turn, my horse started to lay inwards and I didn't think he could keep going from there.' Allan has long held a good opinion of Tong and felt he was the ideal rider for Flying General last night. 'He's a handy horse, but I think he has climbed probably a bit high in the ratings after winning a couple last season,' Allan said. 'So I went for Jacky and the 10-pound claim and it paid off. I think he's a promising young rider, so the 10 pounds is a real bonus with him.' Though Whyte had to be content with second in the feature, he did have a stroke of luck after his winning ride in the final for Peter Ng Bik-kuen on Dashing Champion, after stewards grilled him over a check to Snippetyiyea at the 500 metres. In the end, the champion rider escaped with a severe reprimand and chief steward Jamie Stier warned he should have done more to keep his ride straight. The David Oughton-trained Kashmac won first-up as he had last season at the city track, but the oohs and ahhs were all for Whyte's sensational ride, steering a passage up the rail that took the grey from the rear of the field to a challenging fourth in just a matter of strides and the race was over from there. 'It was a fabulous ride and Kashmac probably needs a good ride to win his races. He's just an honest, ordinary Class Five horse. You'd have to say he probably won tonight because of the drop from Class Four during the off-season,' Oughton said. Whyte also paired with Alex Wong Yu-on for his first win of the season, but Wong was handing bouquets to the horse's owner for the win. 'The most important thing was that, when the horse won in April, the owner said to give him a rest instead of racing him on,' Wong explained. 'He said he had won two races for the season and that we shouldn't be too greedy. The horse has had a good break and there's the result - you come back four months later and there's another win.' Consistent gelding Reward became the first points scorer of the new Happy Valley Million Challenge last night, winning the third, a Class Three over 1,650m. The Challenge is conducted on races of Class Three and higher until December 31, with points for the first five placegetters. Reward (Marcus) was scoring only the second win of his 38-start career, but had finished 13 times in the minor placings. 'He likes to lead, but so does Indubitably Bliss,' said trainer Derek Cruz. 'So I said to Anton that it was fine if he led but to take a sit if Indubitably Bliss wanted the front. He gave him a great ride sitting behind and, most important, just rode him hard hands and heels. Reward tends to put his head up in the air if you hit him with the whip.' And that could have cost victory in a tight finish last night, but Marcus is riding brilliantly and was given full credit for his other win on the Dennis Yip Chor-hong-trained French Connection. 'I was always worried about the wide barrier before the race but Anton's ride was the difference,' said Yip, who had saddled up French Connection as the first winner of his debut season 12 months ago and the gelding gave him win number one of this term, too. 'He has been quite a nervous horse and so it takes plenty of work and time to get him going just right.'