Trainer John Moore is hoping the magic touch of Douglas Whyte can end a frustrating losing sequence for talented stayer Soprano, who has gone around 21 times without success since arriving in Hong Kong as a supposed 2005 Derby horse. Soprano, a son of Royal Academy's Group One miler son Ali-Royal, has come solid over the last six months since his transfer to Moore, registering two seconds and three thirds from his last five starts, but a win would do wonders for his confidence. Whyte had one previous ride on him, last preparation, and yet again the five-year-old had no luck, finding traffic problems at the 400 metres and again at the 200m before a late-closing second to the promising Sikander over 2,200m at Sha Tin. That was on June 28 and was Soprano's last run for the season. He resumed on October 25 with a third to stablemate Gung Ho over 1,650m at this track and followed up with another third - once again unlucky - behind Excellent Boy over this course and distance on November 7. The pleasing thing about each of these runs has been Soprano's level of finishing speed, which shows that Moore has him in very good order and it's now just a matter of the breaks falling his way to open his account. From barrier 10, Whyte is likely to cut straight across behind the field and find the fence, and from there give Soprano a ground-saving ride. It's a manoeuvre that the champion South African has perfected over time and this looks like a perfect opportunity to give the proven strategy another workout. Despite being winless in those 21 Hong Kong starts, the overnight punters are wide awake to Soprano's prospects. The gelding was a $35 favourite on last night's 7pm tote call.