The Japanese drove a long way from Golden Sixty on Champions Day in April, but that won’t be the case at next month’s Hong Kong International Races as four gallops from the Land of the Rising Sun have been confirmed for the Group One Hong Kong Mile.
The Japanese quartet Danon Kingly, Indy Champ, Vin de Garde and Salios will be accompanied by Aidan O’Brien’s Mother Earth, which is considered to be the toughest test of Golden Sixty’s career so far.
Reigning Horse of the Year defeated three international raiders in the Mile 12 months ago – Admire Mars, O’Brien’s Order Of Australia and Romanized – and this year’s invasion contingent is not only more quantity, but probably more quality too.
The Japanese have reported more runners in the mile than any other HKIR feature and all but Vin de Garde have Group One wins in their name.
Danon Kingly is in perfect shape after defeating the superstar mare Gran Alegria – as well as Indy Champ and Salios – in Group One Yasuda Kinen (1,600 m) in Tokyo in June.
The five-year-old then had some time before returning last month and finishing second in Group Two Mainichi Okan (1,800m), while Indy Champ and Salios are also in shape around Gran Alegria after finishing fourth and sixth, respectively, behind the knockouts became champions in the Mile Championship at the weekend in Hanshin.
Loves Only You hit the headlines at the Hong Kong Cup as 21 Raider to Sha Tin for HKIR. come
Vin de Garde travels to Hong Kong after finishing in the field behind Space Blues on November 6th in the Breeders’ Cup Mile in Del Mar, but in second place behind Lord North in the group One Dubai Turf (1,800 m) in Meydan occupied March.
Mother Earth, who won Group One 1,000 Guineas (1,600 m) in Newmarket in May and also saluted the highest level at the Prix Rothschild (1,600 m) in Deauville in August, also comes from the Breeders’ Cup Mile and is two places ahead of Vin de Garde.
The Hong Kong Mile (G1)
1,600m, 25,000,000 HKD, for 3 years +
Golden Sixty (AUS)
(5G Medaglia D’oro – Gaudeamus, from distorted humor)
J: CY Ho
T: K.-W. Luis
O: Stanley Chan Ka Leung
B: Asco International Pty Ltd, Qld pic.twitter.com/SSRsiitAXt
– (@ WorldRacing1) December 13, 2020
Golden Sixty will also have to defeat seven local rivals if they are to take the Hong Kong Mile victories in a row, extending their winning streak to 16, within one of Silent Witness’ Hong Kong records.
John Size’s Group One winner Waikuku, as well as More Than This, Sky Darci, Champion’s Way, Healthy Happy, Excellent Proposal and Lucky Express take their place in the field of 13.
Golden Sixty sailed past Waikuku, More Than This, Sky Darci and Champion’s Way to win the Jockey Club Mile on Sunday, while Lucky Express and Excellent Proposal from the recent Panasonic Cup won the 1st – since June.
Lucky Express and Excellent Proposal are also registered for the Class One Chevalier Cup (1,600 m) in Sha Tin on Sunday.