Almond Lee Yee-tat has lately taken a leaf out of the copybook of his mentor, former Hong Kong champion trainer David Hayes, and has been excelling with first-starters. Debutant Ribot Legend (Weichong Marwing) landed the first leg of a double for the stable, joining recent winners Sun Trooper and Good Strike as Private Purchase Griffins (PPGs) able to score at their first race start. 'Just like Hayesy. He was the master at it so I guess something rubbed off after working for him for 10 years,' grinned Lee. 'Actually it's terrible luck for Mark du Plessis, you know. I try to keep everybody happy so I gave the three jockeys I use the most a different PPG to do the work with - Gerald Mosse had Good Strike, Zac Purton had Sun Trooper and this was Mark's horse. 'But of course he got hurt on Wednesday when he fell in New Zealand and couldn't ride today.' Ribot Legend had impressed in a trial at Ashburton in New Zealand, winning by five lengths on a very wet track, and Lee said the talent he showed there had persuaded him to acquire the horse. 'I picked him off that trial and really the speed he has got has no connection with his breeding - by Towkay out of a Tawfiq mare, he really should be a stayer, so hopefully he'll improve as he goes on,' Lee said. 'He's still quite green and wants to hang so winning first time is quite a good effort.' But if winning with a first-starter is a good trick then winning with one of the subscription griffins since the reintroduction of that scheme would have Mandrake perplexed - but not Lee, who had the honour of racking up the first victory for them with Precision Magic (Keith Yeung Ming-lun). 'His races have not been terrible and quite a few jockeys asked for the ride but I said I wanted to put the claiming boy on and take 10 pounds off. 'The race wasn't very strong but I still thought the horse needed all the help he could get,' Lee said.