In a race packed full of potential, Buzzinga marked himself as a horse to follow when extending his unbeaten record in the Class Three Ngong Ping Handicap (1,200m).
A winner of his only race in Australia before being exported to Hong Kong, his winning streak now stretches to three after this gutsy success.
Trainer Tony Cruz was delighted with the victory and expects his four-year-old will continue to improve, with his second Hong Kong victory to leave him on the verge of a jump into Class Two company.
“The horse was backward today but he still overcame it,” Cruz said. “He’s still very green, he’s a big horse and he’s improving. I was very happy with his performance today.
“He only had one start in Australia, this was his second start here and he’s totally lost out there. The jockey says he’s very green, very inexperienced so I think there is a lot of improvement to go yet.
“Today was very close and the other horse was picking him up all the way. I’m sure he’ll still improve and we’ll see how far he can go. He’s a good character and has a fantastic attitude.”
It bodes well for Buzzinga’s future that he was able to win despite his immaturity. Raised 10 points in the ratings after his victory at Sha Tin last month, Buzzinga overcame a tough draw in stall 12 and was carrying top weight against a host of potential improvers, including fellow unbeaten runner Packing Treadmill and Voyage Bubble.
Given a good ride by Karis Teetan, who chose to avoid the early pace battle, Buzzinga came with a strong run down the outside of the field in the straight to get the better of Brilliant Way by a neck after a protracted duel up the Sha Tin straight.
Trainers’ championship leader John Size, who was just touched off with Brilliant Way, got his revenge on Tony Cruz just over half an hour later when Silver Express saluted in the Class Two Mui Wo Handicap (1,400m).
The five-year-old was the class horse in the race having won at Class One level earlier in the season but had been off the track for a couple of months with lameness.
Silver Express was smart out of the gates under Zac Purton, who lost the lead in the jockeys’ championship to Joao Moreira after the Magic Man rode a double on the card.
After managing to get across to the rail early, he never saw another rival as he gamely fought off the attention of the fast-finishing Good Luck Friend, with the Cruz-trained Ima Single Man finishing third in his first start since competing in the four-year-old series.
Cruz to benefit as travel restrictions result in small fields at Sha Tin
Size had earlier teamed up with Moreira to land the Class Three Sha Lo Wan Handicap (1,800m) with the improving Running Glory.
Size ended a mini dry spell with his double after failing to salute since March 23, with his run of outs stretching to 42 runners before Running Glory’s victory.
Frankie Lor Fu-chuen had landed five winners in that time to draw level in the title race, but Size’s brace saw him restore his buffer to two.