Caspar Fownes has had his share of frustrations with the talented Hail The Storm but all will be forgiven if the five-year-old can put his best foot forward and give the trainer one of his biggest wins in today's Group Three Sha Tin Trophy (1,600m). The Sha Tin Trophy, as always, sees a top class line-up with a range of targets on international day in December but the race has a history of classy lighter weights turning over the more established stars. In fact, no outright favourite has won the race in the past dozen years with the likes of Indigenous, Elegant Fashion, Perfect Partner and, in 2005, Bullish Luck and Vengeance Of Rain being turned over in the race recently. Last year, the John Moore-trained Best Gift looked the weight horse of the event and this time it must surely be Hail The Storm (Eddie Lai Wai-ming) in receipt of a stone in weight from those at the top of the field. Though he has promised much but won just twice, Hail The Storm has mixed it with the higher grades since he commenced in Hong Kong, placing in races like the Classic Mile and Hong Kong Derby at level weights. In the latter event, Viva Pataca was a convincing winner over Hail The Storm but on a wet track which did not suit the runner-up and today there will be 18 pounds between them in the handicaps after Lai takes his two-pound allowance. Added to that is the positive fact that, unlike many of his main rivals, Hail The Storm has already had a run this season when he sat wide in a very good third to Good Ba Ba. There was nothing wrong with that effort and even a repeat would be enough to get Hail The Storm home first today. Hopefully from gate six he will get a kinder trip and his versatility in regard to racing handy or back in a field looks important without a real serious pace in the event. Happee Owner and High Intelligent seem likely front runners but after that it becomes cloudy and with Bullish Luck, Joyful Winner, Art Trader and Viva Pataca all committed back runners, the potential for a modest pace won't help them. Of the higher weighted horses, Moore has three and Viva Pataca (Eric Saint-Martin) probably is the one with some blue sky still to his form. Although he has already won a Derby, Viva Pataca looked to improve on that in his two subsequent efforts in the QEII Cup and Champions & Chater Cup. He might still have some more upside to him this season. Fownes' second stringer, Green Treasure (Shane Dye) is also a danger with a lighter weight, coming off a fine first-up effort in the National Day Cup and stepping up to a mile will suit. It's hard to knock Yasuda Kinen winner Bullish Luck (Jacky Tong Chi-kit) and third-placegetter Joyful Winner (Felix Coetzee), but they are at the tough end of the Premier class handicaps and might be more of a threat after this run.