ALTHOUGH there will plenty of short-priced favourites on the 11-race card at Sha Tin – the majority of which will be ridden by Purton – it may pay to look elsewhere for some value-for-money selections.
There are a couple that catch the eye, starting with the down-in-class PUBLICIST who lines up in the second division of the Kut Cheong Handicap (7.35pm) over seven furlongs.
This former two-time Australian winner, and half-brother to Heathy Happy, was bought with the Four-Year-Old Classic Series in mind, but has been slow to acclimatise and only recently started to reach his peak.
He ran much better than his final position of 10th suggested, when behind Drombeg Banner in a competitive handicap over a mile more than two weeks ago.
On that occasion he was apprentice-ridden and had an outside draw. He bounced out smartly from the stalls, and then had to be taken back to last to make sure he wasn’t caught wide, but was still noted running on strongly in the closing stages to finish 10th, beaten four lengths.
With his fitness finally at a premium and Hugh Bowman now taking over in the saddle, he offers some value against Joyful Genius, Yellowfin and Jiangxi Stamina, who are likely to dominate the market.
There is little doubt that, if at his best, talented speedster Victor The Winner will prove hard to beat when facing 11 rivals in the Fat Choi Handicap (8.40am) over six furlongs.
Unfortunately, he does come with a health warning, having started a short-priced favourite in all four races, but only managing to win two of them.
Instead, take a chance with the lightly-raced GOKO WIN who looked a sure-fire future winner when he finished strongly, from an outside draw, behind Atullibigeal at the beginning of the month.
Equipped with blinkers for the first time in Hong Kong (he won three times with them on in Australia) and with trainer Dennis Yip booking Alexis Badel for the ride, he could pop up at good odds.
Publicist (e/w) 7.35am Sha Tin
Goko Win (e/w) 8.40am Sha Tin