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Local Superstar Golden Sixty set to win a tenth Group 1

3 minute read

Arthur Cooper takes a look at the main contenders in this year's Group 1 Hong Kong Mile.

GOLDEN SIXTY.
GOLDEN SIXTY. Picture: Hong Kong Jockey Club.

For the big local crowd that will be in attendance at Sha Tin on Sunday, the one horse they will be cheering home is local star Golden Sixty. Win, lose or draw, he will go down in local racing history as one of the greatest horses to grace the turf in Hong Kong.

Golden Sixty's record reads 29 starts with 25 wins and three placings; nine Group 1 wins and yet to miss the frame; 15 course and distance starts for thirteen victories and two seconds; and – the most impressive statistic – undefeated when racing first-up after a break. He often settles just off the speed. He has won two of the past three editions of this race and if successful, would equal Good Ba-Ba's winning record.

On Sunday Golden Sixty resumes in the Longines Group 1 Hong Kong Mile as an eight-year-old having not been seen since winning the Champions Mile over course and distance at the end of April. His last defeat came in this race last year when front-runner rival California Spangle beat him by a neck, giving him his only Group 1 success to date. Drawn in gate three, he should be able to take up his customary leader's role.

Third choice in the market will be another local runner, Beauty Eternal. Yet to race in a Group 1, this five-year-old's record over the trip is strong, with four starts recording three wins and a second-place finish. This five-year-old arrives having won the trial race three weeks ago.

Ballydoyle has sent the Group 1 Irish Guineas-placed Cairo, who after just eight starts remains unexposed. Following a 148-day break after his Classic placing, Cairo finished third in a Listed race at Leopardstown in October.

France also has a Classic placed runner engaged in Tribalist who finished third in the 2022 edition of the Poule d'Essai des Poulines (French Guineas). Yet to race on good ground, he is a Godolphin-owned and André Fabre trained four-year-old and last start winner at Saint-Cloud in Paris. On a very heavy track, carrying a weight penalty for his Group 2 success in May, he went to the front and despite challenges drew clear in the concluding stages.

Both European horses will likely start at a big price but could find the placings.

Japan has won this race twice in the last eight years and is responsible for no fewer than five runners. Their best chances look to be Serifos, Soul Rush and Namur. Serifos is a Group 1 winner over the distance in Japan and finished second two starts ago in a Group 1 in Tokyo. Soul Rush has been placed three times in Group 1 races including last time when beaten by the reopposing Namur, a four-year-old filly who tends to finish strongly from off the pace.

Selection – GOLDEN SIXTY


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