Sky Darci (NZ) (Darci Brahma) laid out his credentials for a tilt at the HK$12 million Hong Kong Classic Mile with a win over 1200m at Happy Valley on Wednesday.
“We’ll go to 1400 metres in December then go for the Four-Year-Old Classic Series,” trainer Caspar Fownes said.
The Darci Brahma gelding mustered early from the gates to hold a midfield position under jockey Joao Moreira, before turning for home and switching back to the inside to pull away in style for a tidy two and three-quarter lengths win.
“He’s always indicated that he is a nice horse,” Moreira said. “Today he really proved that, winning with the top weight on his back after not really jumping very well; sticking himself in between horses and just running away – that’s all you can ask from a good horse.
“He just did not let us down – he’s a nice horse,” the Brazilian ace added.
The New Zealand-bred took his already impressive record to four wins from seven starts and maintained his unbeaten start to this term with two good Class 3 successes.
“No doubt he’s smart, it’s not his trip as well – we’ve just been trying to pinch a few races along the way. He’s pretty good,” Fownes said.
Fownes could have a strong hand in the Hong Kong Classic Mile on 24 January, 2021, should stablemate and fellow exciting juvenile Sky Field (Deep Field) opt to go there.
“He’s definitely a miler, he’s another one, like Sky Field, I’m just so happy for these owners, they have two nice young four-year-olds. That was quite a good effort with 133 pounds, to do that,” Fownes said.
Sky Darci is a $160,000 yearling graduate from the draft of Highden Park at Karaka Book 1, while Sky Field was purchased at the same sale from the Trelawney Stud draft for $175,000.
Meanwhile Namjong Plus (NZ) (Zacinto) recorded his sixth Hong Kong win when holding off the fast-finishing Reel Bizzy (Kodiac).
“I thought he was knocking on the door – he deserved the win,” jockey Karis Teetan said.
The Zacinto seven-year-old stepped away cleanly from the inside draw to hold a position close to the speed on the rail before peeling out at the 400m mark to take over with 100m left to play out.
“I think the draw helped him, if I hadn’t drawn gate one, I could have ended up using him a bit to get a decent position,” Teetan said.
“I knew the leader was going to take me into the race and I got a nice trail right through, He fought on nicely, he got lost a little bit when he hit the front because he hit it pretty early and the horse down on the outside encouraged him a little bit to keep going.”