A reinvigorated Super Wealthy will head towards December’s Hong Kong Sprint after another stunning display in the Group Three National Day Cup, giving trainer David Hayes his first Group success in Hong Kong in almost 17 years.

The Australian Hall of Fame trainer’s previous Group win came in the Group Two International Cup Trial with Ain’t Here (Brett Prebble) on November 14, 2004 during his first stint in the city, but it’s highly unlikely he’ll have to wait that long again given the amount of talent in his yard.

After going winless last season, Super Wealthy seems to have grown a leg since being transferred from Douglas Whyte to Hayes, while a drop down to 1,000m has also proven a winning move.

The six-year-old showed what he was capable of with an impressive performance in Class Two last month and he took it to another level in Friday’s feature.

Alexis Badel found a lovely spot in transit just behind the early leaders before taking a split and sprinting away to beat Sky Field and favourite Lucky Patch.

Given Super Wealthy’s two recent efforts, Hayes is embracing the challenge as he targets the 1,200m Group One at the Hong Kong International Races.

“He really did [step up], running exceptional time and beating in-form horses. He’s done it twice in a row now so I’ve got complete faith in him going forward into the good races here in Hong Kong,” said Hayes, who had four winners on the day.

“I think [there is more to come], I just like the way he is relaxing, he’s matured in the head and like a lot horses in my stable, second-season horses are just so much better than first-season horses.

“We’ll see how he pulls up, the [Group Two Premier Bowl] is on the 17th of October which we’ll consider – that’s if he eats. That’s probably a really nice race because he’s well in at the handicaps and it will probably qualify him for the international. So that’s the way we’re looking.”

Nervous Witness ready to wow again, Super Wealthy’s first Group test a ‘crossroads race’

Badel has been aboard for four of Super Wealthy’s five wins and was delighted with his run.

“I feel very pleased because this is a special horse who has given me a few winners in the past. It was a great race for him – he was carrying no weight so he’s done his best and he showed he’s a very good horse,” he said.

“The draw on the stands side was a bit tricky because I was looking for the best horse to follow. I found it and he gave me a clear and very smooth run but I hit the front a little bit too soon and he stopped a little bit, but he won quite impressively.”

The Frenchman knows all about Group One sprinters in Hong Kong, having collected the most recent of those contests with Wellington in the Chairman’s Sprint Prize. When asked to compare them, Badel was complimentary.

Alexis Badel drives Super Wealthy to victory in the Group Three National Day Cup.

“They’re both very good horses. Wellington has proven he was a Group One-level horse and Super Wealthy is on his way as well,” he said.

Trainer Caspar Fownes was excited to see Sky Field rattle home for second and will now plot a path that could end on international day, with both the Hong Kong Sprint and Hong Kong Mile still on the table.

“It was awesome, we thought he’d do something like that so we’ll slowly build up, take each race at a time and see where we go,” he said.

“We have a decision to make after his next run. It depends how he pulls up and I don’t know who is running in that next race, because it’s still under handicap conditions and we might have to carry top weight again. He’ll tell us where he’s going to be.”