Yuichi Fukunaga has a distinction at this year's International Races - the only foreign jockey at the meeting to have already won three international Group Ones on Hong Kong soil. And 30-year-old Fukunaga sees no reason to stop counting now. The brilliant Japanese horseman will ride tough speed machine Meisho Bowler in the HK$12 million Cathay Pacific Hong Kong Sprint and the unheralded Dia de la Novia in the HK$20 million Cathay Pacific Hong Kong Cup. But for Fukunaga, thoughts about the horse who made his reputation in Hong Kong - Eishin Preston - are never far from the surface. 'I had a wonderful association with Eishin Preston and for whatever reason he was a particularly good horse here in Hong Kong,' Fukunaga said. 'When he came here his game always went up a level - some might say two levels. But he really loved this track at Sha Tin, it suited his style of racing.' And that style was to balance up, wait as long as possible and then unleash a tremendous turn of foot for which many of the world's best milers and middle-distance horses had no answer. Eishin Preston first caught the attention when he brilliantly landed the Hong Kong Mile in 2001, defeating Hong Kong idol Electronic Unicorn by the preposterous margin of 31/4 lengths. We say preposterous because he took on Electronic Unicorn, himself a champion miler, at his own late-swooping game and gave him a flogging. Eishin Preston and Fukunaga returned the following spring and brilliantly won the Queen Elizabeth II Cup at 2,000 metres, and returned again in 2003 to land the same event from Hong Kong's first lady of the turf, Elegant Fashion. 'Eishin Preston was the best horse I've ridden in Hong Kong,' Fukunaga said matter-of-factly, 'but I've ridden a number horses better than him at home in Japan.' Meisho Bowler, a brave second to Takeover Target in the Sprinters Stakes at Nakayama on October 1, is on a revenge mission but ironically may find his old Aussie adversary missing tomorrow. 'My horse seems to be in very good form and his work rider has been very happy with his gallops this week,' the jockey said. 'With Dia de la Novia in the Cup, she is a little bit of an unknown at this level, but she's been very consistent in her recent races. She was a close third in the Oaks last year and third to Daiwa Major in a Group Two Mile at Hanshin in April, so we're hoping she can measure up.'