Champion trainer Frankie Lor Fu-chuen is confident Beauty Live will handle backing up quickly and stepping up in trip when he lines up in Saturday’s Class Two Lily Handicap (1,600m) at Sha Tin.
Beauty Live was the best of Lor’s three runners in last Sunday’s high-rating Class Two finale over 1,400m, the lightly raced galloper finishing a close-up fourth behind a couple of Classic Series contenders, Tuchel and Galaxy Witness, and fellow five-year-old Mr Ascendency, who is building towards what would be his second win this season.
Of the full field in last Sunday’s card closer, only Galaxy Witness crossed the finishing line at greater velocity than Beauty Live, the son of Shamus Award clocking 22.41 seconds for the final 400m, including a sub-11-second split between the 400m and 200m markers.
Lor liked what he saw of Beauty Live in the latter stages so much that he decided the best plan of attack with his charge was to race him over a mile this weekend.
“Last time over 1,400m, he came from second last strongly, so maybe he needs to step up to 1,600m. I think the trip won’t be a problem,” said Lor of Beauty Live, whom some favourite backers may not have forgiven for losing at odds on when he placed second on his only previous start over a mile.
Zac Purton was the jockey aboard the galloper who ran down Beauty Live in the shadows of the winning post in that Class Three contest over 1,600m in March, but it is his job to get Lor’s horse across the line first on his second crack at the distance.
Lor has always had a good opinion of Beauty Live, but last term’s Classic Series came too soon for him – he debuted on New Year’s Day and shed his maiden tag in a Class Four event over 1,400m seven days before Romantic Warrior claimed the Classic Mile.
“Last season, I thought about going to the four-year-old series with him, but his rating was a little too low, so I kept him back to see if he could try and go to another level this season,” the trainer said.
Packing Treadmill is a winning machine! 🔥— HKJC Racing (@HKJC_Racing) December 24, 2022
That's his sixth victory at just his eighth start, denying Fantastic Treasure in a cracking finale!
Next stop?! 2023 #4YOSeries | #HKracing pic.twitter.com/BmifYospYV
Lor, who leads this term’s trainers’ premiership by three wins even though he has fired blanks at each of the past two meetings, is double handed in the Lily Handicap as Matthew Poon Ming-fai gets back together with his old mate, All For St Paul’s.
Poon has ridden All For St Paul’s 12 times for three victories, but they have been apart for each of the six-year-old galloper’s past five races, two of which the front-runner won under Matthew Chadwick.
All For St Paul’s comes out of the Class Two mile contest in which Packing Treadmill made it three wins from three starts this season, but that event was very slowly run until its halfway point and the first four with 600m remaining filled the frame.
Lor has 10 runners across the 10-race programme. One of the handler’s most intriguing runners is Stand Up, an eight-start maiden with three consecutive seconds to his name, the latest two at short odds.
Never better than eighth in his three turf races, Stand Up sticks to the all-weather track for the Class Four Peach Blossom Handicap (1,200m), but his new rider, Hugh Bowman, must plot a path from gate 12. Bowman takes over from Silvestre de Sousa.
Oscar Glory, Run Run Buddy, Savvy Kingman, Superbella, Like That, Lucky Archangel and Youthful Deal are the other members of Lor’s racing party.