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Able Friend imperious in BOCHK Wealth Management Jockey Club Mile

23/11/2014

Able Friend flicked aside a field of top-class rivals to win the G2 BOCHK Wealth Management Jockey Club Mile at Sha Tin racecourse today, Sunday, 23 November. 

Like a lion swatting flies, the strapping chestnut was almost casual in victory as he purred down the home stretch at a rate of knots that not one but two Hong Kong champions were unable to match.

After sitting handy in midfield under Joao Moreira, Able Friend cruised upsides the leader at the top of the stretch. A slight shake of the reins 250m from the wire was enough to end the race as a contest; the Shamardal five-year-old quickened to the front and rolled away from his nine opponents for a two and a quarter-length success.  

“Riding such a good horse like him makes my life so much easier,” said Moreira, who had no need to use his whip and was able to ease his mount a few strides from the line.

“He’s done it extremely easily. He was going so good I didn’t have to pull out the whip or squeeze him up because I wanted him to be feeling good with himself. He was going to get there so there was no point knocking him around and he’s crossed the line full of himself.”

Able Friend’s triumph strengthened his position as one of the prime candidates for the LONGINES Hong Kong Mile at Sha Tin on Sunday, 14 December, for which this race is the prime local trial. 

“There doesn’t have to be much improvement based on his run today,” said Moreira. “He’s such a good horse. He’s probably one of the best horses I’ve ridden in my life so let’s look forward and see what he can do in the Hong Kong Mile.”

Trainer John Moore has long asserted that the Australian-bred Able Friend has all the hallmarks of a champion and is now looking forward to the LONGINES Hong Kong Mile with eagerness.

“We all know that I said I thought he was slightly underdone for today but after that facile win, I don’t think I’ve got to do much more before the international meeting,” said the handler. “He ran a very strong 1m 33s on the bit, so from that point of view I’ll just keep him at this level for the big day. Going in, we’re full of hope now.”

Able Friend’s exact winning time was 1m 33.46s with a final 400m split of 21.41s. Hong Kong’s Champion Miler, the Richard Gibson-trained Gold-Fun, chased in vain to claim second place. Former two-time Horse of the Year Ambitious Dragon, having his second start after an eighteen-month injury lay-off, ran on to finish two and three-quarter lengths behind the winner in third.

Photo 1, 2, 3
John Moore-trained Able Friend (No 4, in black), ridden by Joao Moreira, storms home to win the G2 BOCHK Wealth Management Jockey Club Mile (1600m turf) at Sha Tin racecourse today.
Photo 1:
Photo 1, 2, 3 John Moore-trained Able Friend (No 4, in black), ridden by Joao Moreira, storms home to win the G2 BOCHK Wealth Management Jockey Club Mile (1600m turf) at Sha Tin racecourse today.


Photo 2


Photo 3

Jubilant connections of Able Friend celebrate their victory after the race.
Photo 4:
Jubilant connections of Able Friend celebrate their victory after the race.

Photo 5, 6, 7
At the trophy presentation ceremony, Club Steward Michael Lee presents the BOCHK Wealth Management Jockey Club Mile trophy and silver dishes to Able Friendˇ¦s owner Dr Cornel Li Fook Kwan and his representative, as well as trainer John Moore and jockey Joao Moreira.
Photo 5:
Photo 5, 6, 7 At the trophy presentation ceremony, Club Steward Michael Lee presents the BOCHK Wealth Management Jockey Club Mile trophy and silver dishes to Able Friendˇ¦s owner Dr Cornel Li Fook Kwan and his representative, as well as trainer John Moore and jockey Joao Moreira.


Photo 6


Photo 7

Ng Leung Sing, Chairman of Bank of China (Hong Kong) Trustees Limited, presents a souvenir to the owner representative of Able Friend.
Photo 8:
Ng Leung Sing, Chairman of Bank of China (Hong Kong) Trustees Limited, presents a souvenir to the owner representative of Able Friend.

Jason Yeung Chi Wai, Deputy Chief Executive, Bank of China (Hong Kong) Limited, presents a crystal trophy to winning trainer John Moore.
Photo 9:
Jason Yeung Chi Wai, Deputy Chief Executive, Bank of China (Hong Kong) Limited, presents a crystal trophy to winning trainer John Moore.

Ann Kung Yeung Yun Chi (centre), General Manager, Personal Banking and Product Management, and Wendy Tsang Kam Yin (right), General Manager, Private Banking, Bank of China (Hong Kong), present a silver dish to winning jockey Joao Moreira.
Photo 10:
Ann Kung Yeung Yun Chi (centre), General Manager, Personal Banking and Product Management, and Wendy Tsang Kam Yin (right), General Manager, Private Banking, Bank of China (Hong Kong), present a silver dish to winning jockey Joao Moreira.

HKJC Chairman Dr Simon Ip, HKJC Stewards, top executives of Bank of China (Hong Kong) Trustees Limited and Bank of China (Hong Kong) Limited, and the winning connections of race winner Able Friend, smile for cameras in the BOCHK Wealth Management Jockey Club Mile trophy presentation ceremony.
Photo 11:
HKJC Chairman Dr Simon Ip, HKJC Stewards, top executives of Bank of China (Hong Kong) Trustees Limited and Bank of China (Hong Kong) Limited, and the winning connections of race winner Able Friend, smile for cameras in the BOCHK Wealth Management Jockey Club Mile trophy presentation ceremony.

HKJC Chairman Dr Simon Ip, top executives of the HKJC, Bank of China (Hong Kong) Trustees Limited and Bank of China (Hong Kong) Limited, as well as Able Friendˇ¦s owner Dr Cornel Li Fook Kwan, toast for success after the race.
Photo 12:
HKJC Chairman Dr Simon Ip, top executives of the HKJC, Bank of China (Hong Kong) Trustees Limited and Bank of China (Hong Kong) Limited, as well as Able Friendˇ¦s owner Dr Cornel Li Fook Kwan, toast for success after the race.

The winning connections smile for cameras after the race.
Photo 13:
The winning connections smile for cameras after the race.

 

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