The Australian representative in Sunday’s Champion’s Mile 2016 field at Sha Tin Racecourse in Hong Kong, the John O’Shea-trained Bow Creek has work to do after drawing wide in barrier 11 for the Group 1 clash.
Earlier on the card in the prestigious Group 1 Champion’s Sprint Prize (1200m) two Aussie champions – Chautauqua and Buffering – will jump from gates six and three respectively as single-figure fancies in the classic.
Next on the card the third Australian-trained horse running in Hong Kong on Sunday, the Godolphin-raced Bow Creek, pays $11 through Ladbrokes.com.au in the current markets for the Champion’s Mile (1600m).
He has Hong Kong-based Zac Purton booked for the ride, which is the five-year-old Shamardal stallion’s first international assignment since arriving in Australia last October.
A winner of six of his 23 starts to date, Bow Creek is a European import to the Godolphin stable and has won just one start down under when defeating Fenway second-up at Caulfield in February’s Group 2 Peter Young Stakes (1800m).
His latest run was a fifth behind Chris Waller’s mighty mare Winx in the Group 1 Doncaster Mile (1600m) on April 2.
O’Shea arrived in Hong Kong on Thursday and was thrilled with a strong track gallop at Sha Tin on the grass track by Bow Creek ahead of his tough test on the weekend.
Godolphin also have the Charlie Appleby-trained Safety Check in the Champion’s Mile field, Sydney’s James McDonald flying over for the ride on the $8 fancy from barrier four who shoots for three wins on the trot.
Champion’s Mile betting though is firmly led by Japan’s Horse of the Year Maurice ($2.05), Brazilian jockey Joao Moreira riding the flying first-up from barrier six.
Maurice also worked well in a Thursday gallop at Sha Tin ahead of his first run since December, Moreira more than happy with the horse’s effort that saw him complete his final 400m section in 23.52 seconds and his last 200m in a smart 11.56 seconds.
“I think the horse is in good shape and I am blessed to be given the opportunity to ride him,” Moreira told the South China Morning Post.
“He was very strong to the line on the bridle. He had a very good look around, but that doesn’t concern me, as he has done everything fine before and I have a very high opinion of the horse.
“He is a beautiful horse, he has a nice body shape, he is tall and he moves like a real champion.”
Other notable hopes in Sunday’s clash over the Sha Tin mile for Race 8 include the Richard Gibson-trained grey Giant Treasure ($5.50) and Hussonent five-year-old Contentment ($6), a three-time winner at the course and distance, jumping from a good gate two draw with Aussie expat Brett Prebble in the saddle.
See below for the full Champion’s Mile 2016 field, barriers and latest Fixed Win odds provided by Ladbrokes.com.au – home of the $500 first time depositor’s bonus with use of the code BETBONUS!