The 2010 Hong Kong Vase will take place at Sha Tin Racecourse this Sunday December 12, one of four Group 1 features of the prestigious Hong Kong International Raceday.
The HK$14 million Hong Kong Vase (2400m) has drawn 14 entries this year, lead by reigning Melbourne Cup winner Americain.
Alain de Royer-Dupre’s Americain is the favourite in the Hong Kong Vase betting markets, the French-trained stayer in impeccable form having won their past five races on the trot including their impressive win in the world’s richest handicap, the Melbourne Cup at Flemington on November 2.
Despite their imposing recent record, however, the 2400m is perhaps not ideal for Americain who performs better over more distance.
The six-year-old did manage to take out the Group 3 Geelong Cup (2406m) when in Australia for the spring, but the Hong Kong Vase looks a much tougher assignment.
Favourites do have a good history in the Hong Kong Vase, and favourite backers will be reassured by the 37.5% winning rate favourites have produced in the race.
As an international, Americain also has the upper hand as 15 of the 16 editions of the Vase have gone to overseas raiders.
Multiple Group 1 place-getting filly Board Meeting is the other runner in the Hong Kong Vase for France.
The Hong Kong Vase field is truly an international affair this year, with only four locally-trained runners in the mix.
Hong Kong highest earning horse in history Viva Pataca, reigning Hong Kong Champion Stayer Mr Medici coming off an Australian campaign, up-and-coming stayer King Dancer and Mighty High who has made the field following the scratching of Scalo, are the three Hong Kong horses lining up on Sunday.
Of the Hong Kong contingent Viva Pataca is the shortest-priced entry in the Hong Kong Vase odds.
Japan will be represented by Tenno Sho winner Jaguar Mail, who is the current second favourite to win.
Jaguar Mail placed an eye-catching fourth in the Hong Kong Vase behind Daryakana (prepared by the Americain’s trainer Aiden O’Brien) last year, beaten by less than half a length and has genuine claims on Sunday.
Ireland have the Aiden O’Brien-trained Joshua Tree, Jakkalberry is lining up for Italy, Winchester has come in from American, Mastery represents the mighty Godolphin stable, and Great Britain is represented by Indian Days, Redwood and classy mare Crystal Capella.
Crystal Capella is also getting plenty of love from the punters her impressive career record of seven wins from 11 starts speaking for itself.
The 2010 Cathay Pacific Hong Kong Vase is the first Group 1 feature on the Sha Tin card for Sunday, scheduled to run as Race 4 at 2:00pm (local time).
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2010 Hong Kong Vase Field
|AMERICAIN (FR)||Alain de Royer-Dupre|
|VIVA PATACA (HK)||John Moore|
|JAGUAR MAIL (JPN)||Noriyuki Hori|
|JAKKALBERRY (ITY)||Endo Botti|
|MASTERY (UAE)||Saeed bin Surorr|
|WINCHESTER (USA)||Christophe Clement|
|INDIAN DAYS (GB)||James Given|
|MR MEDICI (HK)||Peter Ho|
|REDWOOD (GB)||Barry Hills|
|KING DANCER (HK)||Sean Woods|
|MIGHTY HIGH (HK)||John Moore|
|CRYSTAL CAPELLA (GB)||Sir Michael Stoute|
|BOARD MEETING (FR)||Elie Lellouche|
|JOSHUA TREE (IRE)||Aidan O’Brien|