DENNIS Yip snared a double at Happy Valley tonight, Wednesday, 14th March, the trainer teaming with Italian hoop Umberto Rispoli to bag the trophy race, the Class 3 Police Cup Handicap (1200m).
Yip’s Generous Heart raced behind mid-rank in the evening’s sixth contest, slipstreaming race favourite Sir Redalot until swinging wide into the home stretch and barreling on by. The 4.3 shot scored by a length and a half from the 2.8 jolly.
It was Rispoli’s second win for Yip from the last four race meetings.
“Dennis is one of the trainers who has always given me a chance, he’s always given me rides so he’s been a good support to me,” Rispoli said after the 67-rated chestnut had captured a second course and distance win, having competed at 1650m in his most recent four starts.
“The race tonight was perfect because I was travelling behind the horse that seemed to be the one to beat, Sir Redalot. He just brought me to where I wanted to be in the straight. My horse kicked really well and he stayed on to the line.”
Yip took the opener, the Class 5 Luard Handicap (1200m), with Treasure And Gold at odds of 5.5. The five-year-old made light of his wide berth in gate 12, rolling along at the tail before advancing to the front rank’s heels in the stretch and then quickening between rivals to score under an ice cool Zac Purton. The winning margin was a comfortable length over fellow top-weight Raichu.
“It was a good effort; the breaks came at the right time and that’s what he needs, to get there late. You don’t want him to know that he’s there because he’ll start to think about it,” Purton said.
Yip’s brace took his season’s tally to 28. The former champion trainer has five wins so far for the month of March.
“All the horses are keeping their form and tonight we’ve had weak fields. The jockeys have done the right thing, they’ve settled the horses and finished good,” he said.
“Zac had the luck in the first race; he said he had a wall of horses and the horse in front hung out a little bit, which gave him the room. Generous Heart liked the ground, a little bit of moisture is good for him. He’s a Class 3 horse and the 1200-metre race is a bit weaker than the 1650.”
Champion trainer John Size also nailed a double. Olivier Doleuze drove Bond Elegance to a short-head verdict in race five, and Brett Prebble notched career win 801 when Money Boy swooped wide and late to claim the seventh at odds of 24/1.
Litterateur posted an accomplished victory in the closer at 4/1. The Richard Gibson-trained top-weight took his Hong Kong career haul to four wins from 18 starts, storming clear under Nash Rawiller for a two and a quarter-length verdict.
Apprentice Jack Wong and trainer Tony Cruz combined to take the second race with Multigogo, while 13-time champion jockey Douglas Whyte was on the mark for his 12th win this term atop the Caspar Fownes-trained Peace Combination in race three.
Italian rider Alberto Sanna, a past champion in Bahrain, has worked hard for every opportunity this winter and gained a deserved fifth win aboard King’s Man in race four for trainer Ricky Yiu.
Racing resumes at Sha Tin on Sunday (March 18th).