Nick Moore Aiming High with Saturn

A runaway win by Hostwin Saturn in Saturday’s Class 2 & 3 Handicap has elevated the son of Stratum (Aus) to clear cut favoritism for the Macau Derby set down for July 19.

Prepared by first season trainer Nick Moore, Hostwin Saturn  simply destroyed his opponents in a brilliant display of speed and stamina under French rider J B Hamel, to win easily over the Derby course of 1800 metres in a slick 1.47.5. The Derby record is 1.47.00 held jointly by The Alfonso and Sacred Capital.

HOSTWIN SATURN winning the THE PUERTO PRINCESA Picture: Macau Jockey Club

For a first season trainer to win Macau's greatest race the Derby would be an outstanding achievement, however it's a plan that Nick Moore set in motion at the beginning of the season.

"I've always had this feeling that he was going to turn into a Derby prospect. I took him to the races at Hawkesbury back in August when I was working for Dad (Gary Moore).  He ran a big race that day over 1800 metres only beaten 0.83.of a length." Nick Moore said.

HOSTWIN EPANOUI winning the THE TOWNSVILLE Picture: Macau Jockey Club

"He's the perfect horse for Macau, I threw everything at him and he just kept muscling up and never leaves an oat."

Hostwin Saturn was a A$240,000 purchase at the 2017 Gold Coast 2YO's in Training Sale by owner Mr. Jason Tam.

INFINITE TREASURE winning the THE VIGAN Picture: Macau Jockey Club

"I fell in love with the horse because he reminded me of Viva Pronto with the star on his forehead. Viva Pronto  was one of Dad's outstanding horses he even won a Group 3 in Hong Kong."

"He was doing a lot wrong in his races in Australia by overacing. J B (Hamel) told me if I take him to the front he will switch off and prick his ears and he did just that."

"It would be an amazing story if I can win the Derby for Mr. Tam, he's been such a big supporter and I wouldn't be here today if it wasn't for him getting me up and going."

Peter Lao and Rambo Tse.J
Peter Lao and Rambo Tse.J Picture: Macau Jockey Club

Jason Tam also has another rising star that could make the Derby cut in Hostwin Epanoui  who overcame difficulties to score an impressive victory on Friday night in the Class 2 & 3 over 1500 metres (turf).

Prepared by Tony Fung and ridden by apprentice Eric Cheung, Hostwin Epanoui walked out of the gates giving the leaders a good six lengths start.  Showing great patience young Cheung tacked onto the field and gradually improved against the rail to be mid field at the six hundred.  Trailing race favorites Winnie Star and Draft Camp up rounding the turn, Hostwin Epanoui sprinted quickly when an opening came and raced away for an impressive win.

Hostwin Epanoui was also an expensive purchase being knocked down to Jason Tam and Gary Moore for A$200,000 at the 2017 Gold Coast Yearling Sales.

HEARTGOODALLWELL winning the THE PASAY Picture: Macau Jockey Club

It's been a long hard road back for former top jockey Peter Lao but finally after 69 rides since returning to the saddle last December, Lao gave a perfect exhibition of front running riding to land the $745.00 pop Infinite Treasure a winner in Saturday's Class 6 over 1500 metres.

Lao set the Rambo Tse prepared gelding alight from gate eight and soon took up the running;  rated perfectly the son of Captain Rio (GB) gave a nice kick off the corner and with Lao looking a picture of poise and balance as he wielded the whip, Infinite Treasure raced away for convincing win.

Once an idol of Macau racing as an apprentice with Darby Armstrong, Peter Lao then successfully plied his trade in Singapore and had great success there, winning a Queen Elizabeth II Cup and the Raffles Cup both aboard Emerald Isles. Other major wins followed like the Kranji Mile on Pacific Prince and the Patron's Bowl on Bon Amie before a shoulder injury in a race fall forced Lao to hang up his boots in 2008.

Lao made a comeback in 2013 and eventually moved back to Macau in 2016. Frustrated by lack of opportunity Lao again quit riding, but the racing bug is a hard one to shake and at the beginning of last season Lao found himself back riding trackwork.

Weight is still not an issue with Lao being able to ride at 118 pounds and whilst the stats don't read well, he has not had much in the way of talent to sit on since his return, however he is riding with all the confidence and judgment that made him a leading name in Macau in the 90's and the early years of 2000.

Joe Lau was back in the winner's circle with an impressive winning double on Saturday's turf card with Crown Of Gold and Heartgoodallwell.

Crown Of Gold a nice looking son of Duporth (Aus) looked super in racing away with the Class 4 over 1500 metres under jockey Luis Corrales.  The gelding had shown ability in three previous runs with two nice placings in the sand; however Saturday was his first tilt at the 1500 metre journey. The easy manner of his victory and the time suggests better days ahead.

Heartgoodallwell was the second of Lau's winners when he literally jumped out of the ground late to win the last of the day the Class 3 & 4 over 1200 metres under Charlie Chan.

In a race run at cracking speed Heartgoodallwell was a mile back early and still spotting them eight lengths coming to the corner, Chan had to weave a path between runners to get clear running then the gelding sprouted wings over the final one hundred metres to win clearly in the line by two lengths from Rivalry (Massa Tanaka), with You And You Alone (Peter Lao) a head away third.

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