Persistence paid off for prolific owner Prince Khalid Abdullah as Flintshire's class prevailed in a slowly run Longines Hong Kong Vase, snapping a sequence of seconds in big races for the four-year-old and finally giving Juddmonte Farms a long sought-after international day success at Sha Tin. He ran a huge race in the Arc, and a blinder in the Breeders' Cup, but the huge thing was the way he trained into this race. Teddy Grimthorpe Flintshire had gone winless in five frustrating starts this year, finishing second four times, including three successive runner-up finishes and capped by seconds in the Prix de l'Arc de Triomphe and Breeders' Cup Turf, while Abdullah was trying to go one better in the Vase after three previous seconds. History was also counting against Flintshire - no horse had come through the Arc and won the Vase in 14 attempts, while seven Breeders' Cup Turf runners had travelled east and failed to deliver, including last year's vanquished favourite, The Fugue. Come race day it was not history that was the Andre Fabre-trained stayer's biggest hurdle, it was a typically slack race tempo that turned into a test of the odds-on favourite's turn of foot - which was unleashed to surprising effect by jockey Maxime Guyon and proved too much for a local brigade punching well above their ratings weight. The half-length victory well and truly shed the unfair tag of "non-winner" for a horse that has been beaten by quality performers including Cirrus Des Aigles, Ruler Of The World, Treve and Main Sequence in Group Ones this year. "I would like to have a few more like him," quipped Abdullah's racing manager, Teddy Grimthorpe. "He ran a huge race in the Arc, and a blinder in the Breeders' Cup, but the huge thing was the way he trained into this race. These big races you have to bring your A game and he is coming to fruition." Grimthorpe said his organisation was taking particular pride in the fact Flintshire was by a home-bred stallion, Dansili, and out of a Juddmonte-bred mare, Dance Routine. Abdullah has been a long-time visitor to Sha Tin's December season showpiece and had runners finish second in 2002 with Polish Summer and back-to-back in 2009 and 2010 with Spanish Moon and Redwood. "It means a lot to Juddmonte to win here because we are an international bloodstock enterprise and it is very, very important to take our best horses around the world to prove our stock ... and to do that on the international stage is absolutely vital for us," Grimthorpe said. "Hong Kong is the melting pot between the northern and southern hemispheres, it is the one place where horses from both hemispheres can compete on a fairly regular basis to get a sounding on the quality of our horses." Local-trained runners filled placings two through four, as Tony Cruz-trained Willie Cazals challenged the winner, falling victim to the slow sectionals, and was outstayed to the line. Third-placed Khaya led from the jump and Mirco Demuro stacked the field through the early and middle stages, running three consecutive 400m splits of 26 seconds-plus, and another of 24.83 before the race became an 800m sprint for home. Willie Cazals' jockey Douglas Whyte said his mount would "win a big one soon". Khaya's handler, John Size, said he was thrilled with his five-year-old's career best effort and was looking forward to the two local mile-and-a-half features later in the year. "He ran the race of his life, and we were very happy with that," he said.