Nashashuk may never live up to his name but Brett Prebble was happy enough with the four-year-old’s modest Class 4 breakthrough in Wednesday night's night’s trophy contest at Happy Valley, the Ebenezer School & Home for the Visually Impaired 120th Anniversary Cup Handicap (1200m).
The jockey ended a 13-meeting shut-out atop the four-year-old, whose Native American name means “Chief of the horses”, according to part-owner Gregory Holmes.
“I wouldn’t have wanted two more strides or he would have been eaten up,” Prebble said after the John Size-trained galloper had held the fast-closing debutant Empire Star by a head to score at start six.
The Australian ace was a late call-up to partner the Northern Meteor gelding, a 4.1 shot, after Zac Purton was ruled out due to illness. That paved the way for a first Prebble success since Sweet Bean’s Class 5 score at Sha Tin on 18 January.
“The way this horse has been racing, he was coming to win one; whether it was tonight or another night, he was thereabouts, so thankfully he saluted for me tonight. I’ve needed it!”
Nashashuk gets the better of Empire Star to win the Ebenezer School & Home For The Visually Impaired 120th Anniversary Cup with Brett Prebble on board, picture Hong Kong Jockey Club