Midnite Promise has not been a prolific winner but his trainer Frankie Lor Fu-chuen and jockey Joao Moreira certainly are and that looks enough to coax another victory from the gelding in the Hong Kong Golf Club Centenary Cup (1,800m) at Happy Valley on Wednesday night.
A seven-year-old with just one victory from 33 starts, Midnite Promise doesn’t have a great career line but he joined the team of freshman trainer Lor before the start of this season and has not run a bad race since.
Two runs ago, he stuck on for third to King Winsa over 1,800m at Sha Tin and then punters made him favourite at his next outing when Moreira jumped on.
The paper form shows that he finished eight but any objective view of the replay would suggest he could have been the winner if he had the room he wanted when the Magic Man tried to make his move in the straight.
Trapped in behind horses that weren’t going anywhere, Midnite Promise couldn’t get into the finish, ending up three lengths behind Je Pense.
Since then, Midnite Promise was reported to have a leg injury on November 17 and did miss a couple of gallops, but Moreira rode him when he finished second in a barrier trial on December 1 and the Brazilian champion is happy to stay aboard, which must be a strong pointer.
From gate two, Midnite Promise should get every chance here, racing in a forward spot either as a leader or taking the trail behind the front-runners if Bo Duke, High Volatility (Nash Rawiller) or Crown Avenue take up the running at a pace that doesn’t suit Moreira.
Top weight Great Joy (Zac Purton) looks his danger although he will be hoping for a decent pace up front.
Great Joy invariably gets back in his races and launches a big finish but that should mean he is giving a start to Midnite Promise as well as 17 pounds in weight.