THE Macau Jockey Club begin their three-day Christmas Carnival meeting tonight with chilly winds and dipping temperatures seeming certain to keep the Taipa attendance figure low. But the toiling Macau operation did receive a boost last Sunday with $23 million bet through the tote and an animated crowd in attendance. If the MJC can stabilise that turnover figure then better times could be ahead. Taipa will definitely be busy on Sunday and Monday and the MJC are likely to cash in on both days as Macau will be bustling with Hong Kong visitors. Wendyll Woods, a seven-year veteran of the Hong Kong racing scene, is getting his share of winners during his three-month winter stint at Taipa. And he could add another to the tally with Brass Venture who might just have the edge on a moderate field in the third event tonight. Brass Venture is one of a number of horses raced at Taipa by Frank Chao who has Gold Venture with Lawrie Fownes in Hong Kong. Chao also has horses with Wendyll's brother, Sean Woods, at Newmarket and the long-standing link between the local owner and the Fownes and Woods families has paid dividends. Nobody is going to get rich backing Brass Venture tonight but he should oblige and could be used as a leg of a double with topweight The Manhattan who looks ready to pounce in this weak race. The Manhattan finished third last time out looking as if there would be the required improvement at his next start. In a field that is hopelessly out of form, he does look the big hope. The Manhattan will be ridden by Y. C. Fung and, despite the paucity of form in the field, may still be at backable odds.