The second race at Sha Tin on Saturday may have only been a Class Five event but the duel between reigning champion Douglas Whyte and last season's championship runner-up Brett Prebble was worth going a long way to see. The combatants drew next to each other on the outside of the bank of stalls, with Whyte on Wait For Me in 13 and Prebble on the Paul O'Sullivan-trained Kiwi Dash on his outside in 14. Whyte, a genius at negating the effects of bad gates, zipped straight across behind the field and got cover immediately on Wait For Me, even though it was in the three-wide line. Prebble snagged Kiwi Dash straight out the back and followed Whyte like a bloodhound. Approaching the home turn, Whyte made what would have been the winning move had his number ultimately gone into the frame. With the horse in front of him, Show Bravely, unlikely to quicken up and the tempo continuing to be sedate, Whyte 'got on his bike' on Wait For Me and moved forward. Now this was probably 200m earlier than he would normally have gone for home. But with these bottom-grade dwellers, turn of foot is not a commodity in plentiful supply and Whyte knew Wait For Me possessed more dash than most in this mile Class Five. The gameplan was absolutely perfect, especially on the 'C' rail placement which so often smiles favourably on horses racing back and wide with cover. The only problem was that it became the de-facto gameplan for Prebble as well, who had Kiwi Dash's nose on Wait For Me's tail throughout. Once Prebble peeled Kiwi Dash to the outside, the battle was drawn and regardless of where racing is run around the world, you would not see a better spectacle. Two of the best jockeys on the planet, pairing off to fight the race out, and leaving the rest of the field behind. Wait For Me wanted to shift in but Whyte was ready, with the whip in his right hand. Prebble was also using his whip right handed, which had the double-edged effect of keeping Kiwi Dash straight and potentially intimidating his rival's mount. Whyte, the former champion of South Africa and now six-times premier in Hong Kong, and Prebble, two times champion in Melbourne and the man who would be king in a Whyte-free zone. All they saw was the finishing post and neither gave the other any quarter. The judge decided Prebble's mount had won by a short head and although their duel had been a titanic one, there was not hint of recognition or acknowledgment from one to the other after they hit the line. It may have looked like a two-man war but in reality it was just one skirmish. On this day, it was Prebble who returned to the winner's circle victorious. But Prebble knows the reason Whyte is the champion is because of his incredible consistency and his freakish ability to make more right decisions, more often. He, of all people, will never take the Durban Demon for granted. He'll be good for another round. And another. And another. And no one knows better than Prebble that the result won't always fall this way.