Published 2023/12/08




– Friday, 8 December

2023 LONGINES Hong Kong Cup

Luxembourg – IRE

Aidan O'Brien's four runners - Luxembourg, Warm Heart, Cairo and Aesop’s Fables - remained on the all-weather course and had their stiffest canter so far, remaining in formation but pulling away from their lead horse, The Prairie as they quickened down the straight.

O'Brien said: "That was perfect, everything was good. They'll step up once more tomorrow and they'll be ready for Sunday."

Nimble Nimbus - HKG

Canter inner track one lap. Trainer Ricky Yiu said: “Since his last run he has held his form but even though he’s raced across a few seasons, it seems as though there is still some improvement left in him and I was really happy with how he pulled up.

He really enjoyed his grass gallop – he had a nice blow.”

Horizon Dore - FR

Another gentle hack around the Sha Tin all-weather track under the metronomic Dorian Gonzales was observed by trainer Patrice Cottier - freshly-arrived from his base at Calas near the southern port city of Marseille - as well as owner Kamel Chehboub and his son Axel.

Cottier said: “He seems well and he has recovered well from the travel. He lost a couple of kilos but he put those back on within a couple of days.

I saw him for the first time this morning and he seems very relaxed.

“I’ve watched the videos each morning of his canters and everything has gone as expected.”

Kamel Chehboub added: “Horizon Dore is a crack, that’s all there is to it! We very much hope that he will show it on Sunday.

“He ran very well at Ascot despite having excuses because the ground was not to his liking. He is a top horse.”

Rousham Park - JPN

Exercised in the trotting ring before went to the gates for schooling.

Trainer Hiroyasu Tanaka said: "He's done the breeze yesterday and he was very fresh and energetic this morning. His appetite was very good."

Hishi Iguazu - JPN

Gate practice before paddock schooling, supervised by trainer Noriyuki Hori.

Tomohiro Takahashi, representative for Hori, said: "He galloped yesterday and he’s peaking in fitness. His work is improving and he’s moving nicely. He felt really good when he did his gate schooling and walking in the paddock area. He has a great mode at the moment."

Prognosis - JPN

One and a half lap canter on the all-weather track and gate schooled.

Yasunari Kiyoyama (stable representative) said: “He is in good form and sound after yesterday’s workout.

Gate schooling was no problem, as he had previous experience in Hong Kong back in April.”

LONGINES Hong Kong Sprint

Highfield Princess - GB

Light exercise on the all-weather track.

Trainer John Quinn said: “I was pleased with how she came around the bend, which is what we wanted to do. We were just coming a little bit quicker around those two bends. We then used the other two bends as the pulling up bends, so that she's come around four of them and that was the purpose of the exercise.”

Mad Cool - JPN

Cantered on the all-weather track and gate schooled. Stable representative Shuhei Nakura said: “He was very fresh and keen to go today as he had a gallop yesterday. He can be switched on whenever he wants to. He had a gate practice where he had no problem. I will stretch his legs tomorrow morning.

“He has been very settled and is getting very powerful and is ready to run. We will do a light work tomorrow and race on Sunday.”

LONGINES Hong Kong Vase

Junko - FR

A dual winner of the Vase courtesy of Borgia (1999) and Flintshire (2014), trainer Andre Fabre has another serious candidate in Junko, who appeared relaxed during a gentle canter on the all-weather under regular rider Frank Panicucci; exercise which followed Thursday’s light breeze around the turf course.

Fabre said: “The mile and a half race looks the easiest of the four races - the most even anyway - and as long as there is a good pace he’s going to run very well. Since he switched to a mile and a half he’s taken a step forward. Running over a bit shorter in Dubai was too sharp for him. The draw is not important in this race.”

Geraldina - JPN

Warmed up for 90 minutes in the trotting ring before she had practice in the gates.

Masaru Danno, the representative for trainer Takashi Saito said: "The practice for starting gate should help her a lot as she will have a stall handler on Sunday."

Lebensstil - JPN

Galloped 800m on turf (last 400m in 25.2) and gate schooled.

Trainer Hiroyasu Tanaka said: “We worked him on the turf this morning, which was originally Plan B as we intended to work on turf yesterday. We had a workout in Japan before traveling, and he is fit enough.”

West Wind Blows - UAE

Cantered on the all-weather track.

Joint-trainer Ed Crisford: "I got in last night and had a look at him and I was really, really pleased with him. He looks fantastic in terms of his weight and condition. He's really fresh and well. I think Paul (Holley, rider) fell off him the other day, so he's in good order. We just gave him a nice swinging canter this morning and he looks in good shape."

LONGINES Hong Kong Mile

Voyage Bubble - HKG

Canter inner track one lap.

Trainer Ricky Yiu said: “I’m happy with his condition and it’s almost like he’s never had a setback. He’s ready for it and I am excited to see how he performs this Sunday.” Namur - JPN One hour light exercise, parade ring and gate schooled. Yohei Ogawa (stable representative) said: “Parade ring and gate schooling went smoothly.”

Divina - JPN

Light exercise and gate schooled.

Trainer Yasuo Tomomichi said: “I checked her this morning, and she is in good condition.”

Danon The Kid - JPN

One and a half lap canter on the all-weather track.

Keiichiro Yasuda (stable representative) said: “He is prepared after our gallop on Wednesday. He is in excellent form and showing increased strength on the bridle.”

Serifos - JPN

One and a half lap canter on the all-weather track and gate schooled.

Shinya Matsuoka (stable representative) said: “Everything is going well, including the gate schooling.”

Tribalist - FR

Andre Fabre was on hand to watch Tribalist complete a steady canter around one circuit of the Sha Tin all-weather track under work rider Johann Herve, followed by stablemate Junko (Vase).

Fabre said: “They both seem well and I’m happy. Tribalist is drawn wide and that’s a concern but his form is excellent and we have a line with the European horses and he’s close to the best.

“He can come from behind as well as go forward, which he does in France because nobody wants to go.”

Lim’s Kosciuszko – SIN

Cantered on all-weather track.

Trainer Dan Meagher said: “He just did a strong canter but it was probably the best canter he has done. He did one and a half laps and will do the same tomorrow. It’s the most confident I’ve been today that he’ll run well.”