(Courtesy of http://www.fasttrack.hk)
It might not be the day the earth stood still- except for “psychologist” Bill Vlahos and partner in crime Dan Maxwell and also those in Hong Kong stung by the ponzie “punting club” scheme.
Win, lose or draw, tomorrow will be the day that the racing world comes together to cheer on the best equine talent gathered on one racecourse in a very long time, and with trainers having their million dollar babies primed to the minute and their riders ready with game plans and options in their hip pockets.
Yes, it’s Longines HKJC Hong Kong International Races on Sunday at Shatin with a strong supporting card following which much will be discussed and pontificated about in the Champagne Bar at around 7pm after the last race has been run.
Here’s hoping we who live here don’t have to look at our shoelaces if, like on Friday Night, some well-known overseas visitors decide to cosy up to upmarket Mainland Chinese and Korean “laydays” and scream out, “HOW MUCH FOR ONLY A BLOWJOB?” Only???
These ladies are well-known around these here parts, Tex, and regularly make the rounds of this and other hotel bars in search of those looking for lurve in all the wrong places.
As far as the racing goes, Lord Kanaloa, despite a horror barrier draw, and Moonlight Cloud stand out in their respective races though the other two International races are not so cut and dry and could throw up a shocker bigger than anything from Westpac that has “shocked” Bill “I’m SHOCKED” Vlahos.
Though many are leaning towards Military Attack in the Vase, Richard Gibson’s Akeed Mofeed could upset trainer John Moore’s tactical plans in Bill Vlahos-inspired shocking style along with pouring cold water on the various doubles and trebles discussed for weeks in the twitterverse.
Douglas Whyte has been extremely- and scarily- low key these past few weeks, and it’s no secret that this ride and race are what he’s been waiting for- and for good reason.
There was plenty left in the tank after its last run and one might feel that had Whyte pushed the pedal a little harder and a little earlier- like Bill Vlahos- it would have beaten eventual winner Endowing.
But after a few setbacks- not setbacks as bad as what Bill Vlahos and his punting club are facing- he did just enough to ensure that Akeed Mofeed would be at his peak for Sunday.
Why blow his load and suffer premature ejaculation on the wrong day- as, yes, now faced by Bill Vlahos?
Suggestions for tomorrow, which does not include joining any punting clubs, are below.
R1 SILLY BUDDIES
Another of John Size’s young guns and set to make it three wins in a row. Really can’t see any Bill Vlahos-type $200m shocks happening here.
For tierces, take Ultimate Winners, Hearts Keeper, G-One Leader, Aerovelocity and Masquerader, which has promised so much- like Bill Vlahos- but has failed to deliver- like Bill Vlahos- but might do so for Tommy Berry.
R2 FLAGSHIP SHINE
Dougie Whyte seems to have stuck with this over the very good Sea Dragon- and he looks to have pulled the right rein- unlike Billy Bob Vlahos.
R3 LEVEL PLAYER/LET ME GO/NOBLE BOY
Interesting to see Christophe Soumillon on Level Player, no doubt a choice made by trainer Tony Cruz and the owners who are good mates of the popular- and brilliant- Belgian rider.
Let Me Go races up a class – and looks well up to it. If there’s a dark horse, it could be Dashing Super- the Dashing Bill Vlahos of the race.
R4 MOUNT ATHOS/RED CADEAUX/THE FUGUE
One of these should win and also makes for a good boxed quinella.
And there is absolutely no truth in the rumors that Bill “Mr Fireworks” Nader, HKJC Director of Racing, in a moment of astounding musical creativity, insisted that the HK Police Band strike up Don’t Cry For Me, Argentina when the Sir Andrew Lloyd-Webber-owned The Fugue enters the parade ring and have Jenny Chapman burst into song.
R5 LORD KANALOA/LUCKY NINE
This should- should- be the quinella and great to see Johnny Wong, owner of that grand old galloper Joy And Fun- ten-years-old, but does the galloper know?- fly in regular rider Brett Doyle from Bahrain for the race.
There’s plenty of life in the old boy yet- and with no need for Cialis- and Joy And Fun and Doyle have always formed a great partnership- far better than the odd firm of Billy Bob Vlahos and Dan The Man Maxwell, who, some of us might remember when in Dubai and listening to his millions of get-rich-quick ideas- and his team of Dumb And Dumber in Hong Kong.
Dumb and Dumber aside, John Moore’s Frederick Engels and Sterling City are very strong place chances though I just cannot see his Charles The Great doing a thing.That was its win for a while a month ago.
R6 ABLE FRIEND
Should be too good for this lot though this race is not what it’s been targeted for- which is next month’s Classic Mile.
As our mates Bill Vlahos and Dubai-based Daniel Maxwell will tell you, there must always be an end game to anything worth doing- like dragging Westpac and some suckers into a dumbass scheme, having a bumbling duo here trying to recruit members, and calling it a “punting club”. Gawd knows, the money we saved for many.
Moore, meanwhile, has two others runners entered and Rewarding Hero might just be the stable elect IF Able Friend is just gonna potter around looking at the scenery and waiting for next month’s Classic Mile.
R7 MOONLIGHT CLOUD
A great mare and it will be mesmerizing to watch her in full flight. For quinellas and tierces, take Sky Lantern, XTension, Gold Fun- and add Bill Vlahos for fun.
R8 AKEED MOFEED
Been waiting a month to see this galloper in this race and all eyes will be on Dougie Whyte and how he’ll ride him from barrier one.
Of course, only a damn fool- and Bill Vlahos- will ignore Military Attack whereas Blazing Speed is capable of surprising along with Rainbow Chic. But, it’s Akeeeeed for meeeeee.
R9 LONGWAH SUPREME/YEE CHEONG STAR/MULTIVICTORY/PRINCIPAL
The toughest race on the card. I’ll stick my neck out and use Multivictory as a banker- or ask Bill Vlahos for some tips.
R10 MY FAVORITE
Owned by local celebrity Aaron Kwok and trained by good friend Caspar Fownes, this would be a very popular win and the perfect ending to the day.
Dangers are Super Brother, Smart Man, Bill Vlahos, and the very interesting Fat Choy Hong Kong- the day’s omen bet for local punters- and perhaps a well-priced early Chinese New Year gift?
Don’t worry about the choice of jockey. Eddie WM Lai can get the job done- unlike Danny Maxwell and Bill “Shocked” Vlahos.
RACE 1: SILLY BUDDIES (8)
RACE 2: FLAGSHIP SHINE (5)
RACE 5: LORD KANALOA (1)
RACE6: ABLE FRIEND (1)
RACE 7: MOONLIGHT CLOUD (13)
RACE 8: AKEED MOFEED (4)
RACE 9: LONGWAH SUPREME (4)
The whole thing is to be relevant- to change with the times, to evolve and to enhance things around you- including yourself.
David Bowie continues to be relevant by constantly “de-constructing” and re-creating himself whether as Ziggy Stardust, Alladin Sane, or The Thin White Duke and constantly pushes the boundaries of creativity.
Those marketing racing clubs- and those simply in marketing and in charge of brands- can learn and be inspired by innovators like Bowie.
As we have been saying, we have not seen even one piece of truly creative work from any racing club.
Take your pick: creative committees? The Fear Factor? Settling for Ok Is Good Enough?
Too comfortably numb? Clueless about today’s consumer? Not knowing Originality from Unoriginality?
The need to please everyone- a definite sign of weakness?
Thank gawd, we still have innovators like David Bowie in this world- and who never ever stops creating- and never stops us from being inspired.
SELECTIONS FROM THE BIG APPLE (@SW064351)
Race 5, No. 2 Lucky Nine
Unlucky not to win Manikato. Won this race two years ago and has a record of 5:2-1-0 course and distance at the Group One level. Drawn well, go close.
Race 8, No. 1 Military Attack
Reigning Horse of the Year who kept fighting to the line despite working hard early in Jockey Club Cup. Nearing peak fitness now after two runs back, take beating.
Race 4, No. 2 Dunaden
Slashing fifth in Japan Cup. Impressed in trackwork here, each-way appeal.
SELECTIONS FROM THE THIRD DIVIDEND
SHA TIN (HKG)
Day Races @HKJC_Racing
HKIR- The Greatest Show On Turf
Weather: It will be dry with some haze. Becoming cloudy overnight. The minimum temperature will be around 18 degrees in the urban areas, and a few degrees lower in the New Territories. Sunny periods tomorrow with a maximum temperature of about 23 degrees. A few light rain patches later. Moderate east to northeasterly winds.
Race 1: LONDON HANDICAP
1 – Silly Buddies (8)
2 – Aerovelocity (1)
3 – Ultimate Winners (4)
4 – Hearts Keeper (13)
Race 2: FLYING DANCER HANDICAP
1 – Flagship Shine (5)
2 – Sea Dragon (10)
3 – Destined For Glory (3)
4 – Winning Leader (7)
Race 3: TOKYO HANDICAP
1 – Let Me Go (12)
2 – Level Player (7)
3 – Enthusiasm (9)
4 – Glorious Ryder (10)
Race 4: THE LONGINES HONG KONG VASE
1 – Mount Athos (5)
2 – The Fugue (11)
3 – Red Cadeaux (1)
4 – Dunaden (2)
Race 5: THE LONGINES HONG KONG SPRINT
1 – Lord Kanaloa (1)
2 – Sterling City (12)
3 – Lucky Nine (2)
4 – Frederick Engels (9)
Race 6: DUBLIN HANDICAP
1 – Able Friend (1)
2 – Rewarding Hero (12)
3 – Little Men (7)
4 – Beauty Flame (9)
Race 7 (Q1): THE LONGINES HONG KONG MILE
1 – Moonlight Cloud (13)
2 – Gold-Fun (5)
3 – Real Specialist (9)
4 – Sky Lantern (14)
Race 8 (Q2): THE LONGINES HONG KONG CUP
1 – Military Attack (1)
2 – Akeed Mofeed (4)
3 – Endowing (5)
4 – Tokei Halo (8)
Race 9 (Q3): PARIS HANDICAP
1 – Glorious Sunday (1)
2 – Yee Cheong Star (7)
3 – Berlinski (4)
4 – Multivictory (3)
Race 10 (Q4): BERLIN HANDICAP
1 – My Favourite (5)
2 – Super Jockey (4)
3 – Smart Man (11)
4 – Sichuan Vigour (9)
Race 6: Able Friend (1)
Race 2: Flagship Shine (5)
Race 9: Glorious Sunday (1)
Race 10: Sichuan Vigour (9)
Quaddie ($100 gets you 208%)