Brett Prebble took the kudos at Happy Valley on Wednesday night thanks to an astute double that featured a longshot win on 54/1 chance Star Majestic (121lb).
Brett Preble wins on Star Majestic
The Australian ace had only one ride from 10 races at Sha Tin on Sunday but was on the mark for the 18th time this term aboard the Paul O’Sullivan-trained galloper in the Class 2 Pottinger Peak Handicap (1650m). That followed a race two win atop the Tony Cruz-trained Contribution.
“That’s the way it goes at the moment, but if you give me a ride on a horse I’ll win on it,” the Australian ace said after guiding Star Majestic to a three-quarter-length win over Circuit Glory. Top-weight Litterateur (128lb) claimed third; the winning time was 1m 40.47s.
Prebble stalked the front-running Infinity Endeavour (119lb) through steady opening fractions of 28.42s and 25.66s. But, at the 700m point, the rider had his mount rolling up past the pace-setter and was driving, left arm whirling; Star Majestic had a length and a half on the field by the time he galloped out of the final turn.
“I could have led easy but there was no real pressure and Matthew (Chadwick) was pretty adamant and he likes to let them roll,” the rider said. “I got a beautiful run – just sat him one off – and I actually wanted it to slow down because I knew there were five or six in the race that pull hard, so if we could go through the first half-mile with them wasting their energy, I thought it’d take the zip out of them and I’d just go.
“They didn’t have that finishing speed because they’d worked too much in the first half mile from going slow. It worked out good.”
The win was the Sakhee’s Secret gelding’s eighth in Hong Kong and seventh at the course and distance. But it was his first in Class 2.
“He needs to be comfortable, that’s the thing,” the rider said. “The Sha Tin track is riding a bit firm for him at the moment and when I won on him there a few runs back he gave me a good feel, he quickened and put them away easily. But then when he goes up into Class 2 everyone thinks he can’t do it – it’s not about that, it’s about him feeling comfortable.
“He gets to the front and waits, he got there and he lugged in, he’s a bit of an old boy but he’s got the engine.” Prebble added.
Earlier, the 40-year-old made the most of barrier one to make all on Contribution in section one of the Class 4 Mount Butler Handicap (1650m). Prebble booted the Street Cry four-year-old clear at the top of the stretch and the gelding held on by three quarters of a length to score at odds of 4.2.
O’Sullivan sealed his own double. Jack Wong made all on the trainer’s Moment Of Power, the 3.3 favourite, in the Class 3 Nam Long Shan Handicap (1000m).