Racehorses do not come more consistent than Hong Kong’s champion sprinter Beat The Clock and his trainer John Size says he continues to be blown away by his feats.
The six-year-old is yet to miss a placing in his 23 career starts to date and looks set to continue the formidable form line on Sunday when he races in the Group One Centenary Sprint Cup (1,200m).
Beat The Clock won all three of Hong Kong’s premier sprint races in 2019 and has the first of 2020 at his mercy with just six rivals against him.
An 11-time champion trainer in Hong Kong, Size has seen many good horses but he says he struggles to remember one quite as consistent as his top sprinter.
“He has won three Group Ones in a year, that’s about as good as it gets,” he said.
“I think it’s an amazing record, it’s absolutely astounding, never running out of the first three. Of course every time I say that, I want to bite my tongue, but it is a fact.”
While boom sprinter Aethero stole the headlines heading into last month’s Hong Kong Sprint, Size’s Beat The Clock went about his business and eventually walked away with the prize.
Though his achievements may be missed by some, they certainly are not missed by his trainer.
“I don’t think he is [underrated], that’s his rating, he has won the three Group Ones, you can’t deny him that,” he said.
“I don’t know what the public think of him, but I think he goes all right. Maybe some of his contemporaries get more publicity than him.
“He knows where that winning post is, that is for sure.”
Size holds all the aces in the HK$10 million race. Along with Beat The Clock, he will also saddle up Full Of Beauty, D B Pin and Hot King Prawn, who all head into the race with a chance.
Such is Size’s dominance over the Hong Kong sprinting ranks, only one other trainer has won a 1,200m Group One since May 2017.
While many horses take time to mature into life in Hong Kong, Size said Beat The Clock’s ability was clear for all to see from his first barrier trial.
The son of Hinchinbrook graduated to top-line racing within two seasons under Size.
“The first day he trialled, he showed it straight away. A lot of good horses will do that, as soon as you take them to trials they identify themselves,” he said.
Size will continue to make hay while the sun shines for Beat The Clock, but admits all good things must eventually come to end.
The six-year-old is likely to again race in the Group One Queen’s Silver Jubilee Cup (1,400m) next month where he will look to better his two second placings in the race.
“It’s not as if his form fluctuates, he is very consistent,” he said. “His record is an enviable one, he has been such a strong, consistent horse.
“He is getting older so you wouldn’t know what that does but it certainly has some effect on people and on horses, age kicks in at some stage so it’s whatever he can tolerate.
“Time is the governor of all things, he’s turned six so that will show at some stage.”
As the only jockey to have won on the horse, Joao Moreira will again be on board for Sunday’s test.