The Danny Shum Chap-shing stable has picked up in the same good form in which it concluded the last campaign and what is especially encouraging is that Shum has been producing fresh prospects.
It is always tough to back up a good season with another one as a trainer’s stable stock has often reached its handicap limit, but Shum is defying that pattern so far.
He produced a new addition to the stable, Who’sthedude, to win impressively on Wednesday at his first appearance for Shum and another one, Green Dispatch, who goes into the black book from a later race.
Dropped back to 1,200m where he’d had some terrific form last season, Who’sthedude beat another stable change horse going well enough to have his hoof on the till, Love Chunghwa, and the winner will now be very competitive at the foot of Class Three.
But Green Dispatch is probably even more interesting as a horse to follow on a 76 rating as his past suggests plenty of scope to improve.
He arrived from France with a 91 rating after six wins from 10 starts – all on soft turf, polytrack or fibresand – as well as a French Derby third behind New Bay and Highland Reel on wet going. Purchased as a Derby hopeful, Green Dispatch was naturally thrown in the deep end by trainer Tony Cruz but didn’t appear acclimatised and found that too hard, his better efforts coming when he got to Class Three later. He looked to be turning the corner in his last effort of the season, so Shum was probably fortunate to be getting him at the right time.
Resuming on Wednesday over 1,800m, Green Dispatch had no excuses other than race fitness behind Happy Spirit, but boxed on well for fifth and it promises to be a strong form race, Alvin Ng Ka-chun riding the winner very well in the lead at a strong, consistent pace.
Green Dispatch should have a couple of wins in hand as he blossoms into form now and is probably going to be at his best at Happy Valley or on the all-weather.