Callan Murray was rewarded for a patient outlook as he took the opener at Sha Tin on Sunday and snared a first win for the campaign. The young South African’s relief was expressed with a loud whoop as he passed the winning post aboard Top Ace, his 24th mount this season and the first leg of the Millard treble.
“It’s just a relief. Every winner is nice but my last winner was actually in June, since before my hip surgery, so it’s been frustrating and this will give me the confidence I needed,” Murray said.
This afternoon’s success on the Millard-trained galloper was the rider’s first in Hong Kong since he returned to his homeland in July 2017 following a late-season four-win stint.
Murray, 20, landed back in Hong Kong in August with a view to securing a long-term contract in Hong Kong. But his early season hopes took a knock when he picked up a two-meeting suspension in September.
“The suspension was the most frustrating but these things happen, I was patient enough and I think it’s made me a better person,” he said.
Premiership leader Purton took race five on the Lor-trained Witness Hunter.
Hong Kong racing will continue at Happy Valley on Wednesday, 10 October.
Callan Murray gets off the mark for the season on Top Ace and sets up a treble for trainer Tony Millard, picture Hong Kong Jockey Club