Irish horseman Edward Lynam has named Brisbane raider Buffering as one of the biggest threats in the 2014 Hong Kong Sprint at Sha Tin Racecourse this Sunday to his contender, the recently crowned Horse of the Year in Ireland Sole Power.
Four-time Group 1 winning Kyllachy gelding Sole Power in one of the international raiders in the mix for the Group 1 Hong Kong International Sprint (1200m) on the weekend, the veteran paying $10 through Ladbrokes.com.au to beat the local contingent led by Aerovelocity ($4.80).
Buffering meanwhile is just shorter than him in the markets at around $8.50 to also add a fifth elite level to his impressive record, the seven-year-old son of Mossman’s last Group 1 win being a first-up effort over Lankan Rupee in the Moir Stakes at Moonee Valley in September.
He’s had two unplaced but brave runs since when half a length away seventh to Lankan Rupee when caught back in the Group 1 Manikato Stakes (1200m) on October 24 and then three lengths away fourth to Terravista in the Group 1 Darley Classic (1200m) at Flemington on November 8.
Lynam also got a taste of just how good the Aussie sprinters are having bought his since-retired champion Slade Power down under in the spring.
Winner of the Diamond Jubilee Stakes – July Cup double in Great Britain before heading to Oz, Slade Power could only manage to run five and a half lengths away 11th after dropping out late behind top-rated sprinter Terra Vista in the Darley Classic.
That experience has Lynam wary now of facing Buffering at Sha Tin on the weekend with Sole Power who was last seen running two lengths away eighth behind Move In Time in a 1000m Group 1 sprint in France on October 5.
Before that he was fourth in the Betfred Sprint Cup at Haydock Park on the back of a first-up win in the Group 1 Coolmore Nunthorpe Stakes (1005m) over his pet distance at York in August.
While this is Buffering’s first overseas trip, Sole Power is well travelled and returns to Sha Tin 12 months on from his distant second behind runaway Japanese-trained winner Lord Kanaloa in last year’s Hong Kong Sprint.
Lynam may not believe there is any “exceptional horse this year” in the Hong Kong Sprint field, but he does admit to being frightened by the Robert Heathcote-trained Buffering’s presence.
“The sprint trial here asked as many questions as it answered,” he said according to Racenet.
“I’d be most frightened of the Australian horse Buffering – if he could get an uncontested lead he might be hard to catch.”
He also said that Sole Power proved in Hong Kong last year that he could be competitive over 1200m despite being known as a 1000m short course specialist.
“This horse never shirks a battle and his style of racing – sitting way off the pace – is untypical of a sprinter,” he said.
“He is electric and a real box office horse.
“He’s been more of a 110-rated horse over 1200m, but more like 117 or 118 over 1000m.
“However if he runs like he did in this race last year, he’s got a decent chance, if we get luck in running.”
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