Pretty Bauhinia (126lb) gave Karis Teetan the middle leg of a three-timer when successful in Wednesday evening’s trophy race at Happy Valley, the Class 3 Indian Recreation Club Challenge Cup Handicap (1650m).
Me Tsui’s charge edged the verdict by a head, thanks to Teetan’s decisive action just as the field began to curve towards the home run. Runner-up Let’s Take It Easy (122lb) had a length on the winner when Alberto Sanna urged that galloper to the lead passing the 200m poll, but by then Teetan’s early stoking from a deep position had built to a devouring momentum.
“Me had him in good form again today but when watching the races tonight I thought we might be in trouble because he gets himself so far out of his ground and I thought it might be tough to make up,” Teetan said.
“He felt good at around the 700 (metres) to the 600 (metres) so I didn’t want to waste any time, I had to let him go. If I’d wasted any time and sat behind, he would have been flying home to be second or third. I just took a chance and he liked that. He has a long sustained run so he just kept making it.”
The win was the five-year-old’s second in his last three starts – all under the Mauritian rider – his two successes sandwiching a solid second to Winning Faith last month.
“The horse is flying,” Teetan said. “This season, his last few runs have been so good – there’s not much of him but he’s been trying so hard.”
The jockey opened his account for the night two races earlier in the Class 4 Mount Butler Handicap (1650m). Teetan bustled the David Ferraris-trained Electric Lightning to lead from a stalking berth and the four-year-old extended to the line for a two and three-quarter-length win at odds of 8.6.
The 51-rated gelding at one time held an entry for this season’s Hong Kong Derby.
“I actually had a lot of hope for this horse and he was very disappointing, he seemed to have lost his way. He’s had a problem but he’s recovered well. Thank goodness he’s come back and we’re happy with him now,” Ferraris said.
Teetan ensured a Ferraris double as well as his own treble when driving out Breeders’ Star (131lb) to hold a nose advantage over the fast-closing Back In Black (121lb) in the finale, the Class 3 Siu Ma Shan Handicap (1200m).
Alberto Sanna took the opener on Good For You for the double-scoring Tsui, while Moreira was on the mark with Moore in the third race thanks to the front-running 2.4 favourite Bingo.
Hong Kong racing continues at Sha Tin Racecourse on Sunday, 15 April.