Endowing lands Group 3 success for Europe
Report: Hong Kong, Sunday
The SaSa Ladies' Purse (Hong Kong Group 3) 1m1f, turf, handicap
NOT FOR the first time in recent weeks and months, improving imports from Europe fought out a major prize in Hong Kong with last season's Hong Kong Derby runner-up Endowing, trained by John Size and ridden byTye Angland, shading a terrific effort by Blazing Speed in the feature on Ladies' Day.
Both horses still have a little more to prove that they are up to rigours of level weights competition, but they are certainly going the right way and, at this stage at least, appear chances of berths in the Longines Hong Kong International Races in December.
Endowing's juvenile career in 2011 when trained by Richard Hannon under the same name did not yield any victories from three starts for the same ownership, but it did hint at promise with time.
After a string of consistent, progressive performances over the past year locally and now a Group success, jockey Angland was of the opinion the Danehill Dancer gelding could yet have more to offer.
"While he's not won easily, I reckon the further he races, the further he runs away from them. He's obviously proven over more ground, so he can keep going higher," he said.
Meanwhile, Blazing Speed's performance in defeat was even more commendable having carried top weight of 9-7 and been at the sharp end of a very fast pace that was 0.26 seconds outside a track record going back six years.
The son of Dylan Thomas also had the same name when putting two wins together over 10f late last year as a 3yo for James Fanshawe, but had an interrupted preparation in trying to make the Hong Kong Derby in March and missed the race.
It's worth noting that trainer Tony Cruz was quoted as saying his Italian import Willie Cazals was a potentially stronger chance than Blazing Speed in Sunday's race before being scratched owing to a minor training setback.
The latter is expected to resurface in the Jockey Club Cup at level weights on November 17, the final day of trials for the season's showpiece.
Elsewhere, multiple champion trainer Size was the big winner on the day having saddled wide-margin winners Dehere's The Love, ridden by Olivier Doleuze and, particularly, Access Years, ridden by Joao Moreira in a Class 3 dash.