Monday, 16 July 2012
: Ambitious Dragon repeated his success of 12 months ago when he was crowned Horse of the Year for the 2011/2012 season at the Hong Kong Jockey Club Champion Awards presentation ceremony on Sunday.
| Little Bridge|
Photo by HKJC
After as fierce a competition as has ever been seen for the Hong Kong racehorse's premierships, the five-year-old son of Pins also claimed, for the second successive year, the title of Champion Middle-distance Horse and added the Champion Miler title.
The Tony Millard-trained Ambitious Dragon
's major achievements this season included successes in the first and second legs of the Triple Crown series – the Stewards' Cup (HK G1-1600M) and the Citibank Hong Kong Gold Cup (HK G1-2000M).
The Danny Shum-trained Little Bridge
, Hong Kong's hero in the G1 King's Stand Stakes at Royal Ascot in England in June, was voted Most Popular Horse of the Year by members of the public. In addition, the five-year-old gelding claimed the title of Champion Sprinter.
The Champion Stayer title went to the David Ferraris-trained Liberator
The four-year-old son of Encosta de Lago defeated Ambitious Dragon to win the Standard Chartered Champions and Chater Cup (HK G1-2400M), the final leg of the Triple Crown.
The unbeaten Amber Sky
from the Ricky Yiu Stable was chosen as Champion Griffin. The Australian-bred two-year-old son of Exceed And Excel won each of his three start this season, all of them on the Sha Tin straight course.
He was a very easy winner of his first and second griffin outings before landing the Gallop Handicap, a Class Three competition.
The John Size-trained Glorious Days
, another rising four-year-old star, became the Most Improved Horse with the greatest rating increase of 57 points in the season.
The gelded son of Hussonet snatched four wins and three seconds in his seven starts in his first racing season in Hong Kong. The only race during the season in which he was out of the first two was the Yasuda Kinen at Tokyo racecourse, his first overseas attempt, on 3 June.
Another unbeaten champion, the sprint demon Black Caviar
, was elected the Most Admired Overseas Horse of the Year with 88,049 votes from members of the public.
Meanwhile, the Paul O'Sullivan-trained Cai Bao In claimed the 2011 Hong Kong International Sale Bonus of HK$1m by accumulating stakes money of HK$3,441,750 from his nine starts (three wins, two seconds and one third) to date.
The recently-retired Sacred Kingdom
, top sprinter (turf) in the world between 2007 and 2009, and Able One
, winner of the Cathay Pacific Hong Kong Mile (G1-1600M) last December, were honoured with Lifetime Achievement Awards in recognition of their great contribution to Hong Kong as well as international racing.
John Size won the Champion Trainer title for a seventh time with 70 wins.
Douglas Whyte collected the jockeys' premiership for the twelfth consecutive year with 107 wins. He was also elected Most Popular Jockey of the Year for the seventh time with 94,163 votes.
Ben So became the Champion Apprentice Jockey with 22 wins.