I guess the omen bet for the day will be in Race 5 where the Richard Gibson-trained Kung Hei Fat Choy takes its place. The horse will be ridden by the hard-working Grey Cheyne who leaves for Singapore next month and this could well be the gentleman jockey’s farewell winner in Hong Kong though I did think he had another winning chance on Handsome Batchelor over the weekend. A bad barrier draw and the horse having to work overtime put an end to any Batchelor Party. But Kung Hei Fat Coy should win as I think it has a few rating points over this lot. The fly in Cheyne’s ointment could be Jade Pins to be ridden by Little Timmy Clark.

Today’s card might look to have standouts in Fay Fay [Race 8] and Glorious Days [Race 10], but I would tread warily over the former- and many will think I have eaten too many Moon Cakes to write that. Some have told me that the horse THEY have some doubts about is Glorious Days, but I think they talk with forked tongues and bent minds. To them, the horse has won three times over the same course and distance and even won its only start in Australia before coming out here. BUT, they say, it has also gone up 40 points in the ratings, it hasn’t had a “prepare run for this race and it could be “under-done”. Trainer John Size’s ultra-cautious remarks about the horse on the official HKJC website has made them think that he is advising everyone not to pile on the savings on the horse and that it COULD get beat. By which horse?

There is NOTHING there to touch Glorious Days- it’s the real deal, baby- except perhaps Aashiq IF it gets a soft lead and Jeff Lloyd catches Douglas Whyte napping. I cannot see this happening as the local natives will not only get restless, they’ll roast the Whyte Man over a spit and have him for dinner with some hot congee.

Fay Fay, however, COULD be undone by either Smart Giant or even the badly drawn Longwah Supreme. Let me tell you here and now that Caspar Fownes’ Longwah Supreme is going to prove to be one helluva horse. Jeez, “Cas’s horses have had some shocking barrier draws today. Any wider and he might as well watch the races from his apartment and not bother going to the track.

Of course, both Fay Fay and Glorious Days SHOULD win and many would take these “one out in all Six Up bets, but I have a question mark over Fay Fay though I could be over-thinking this to death. Still, if I were taking a Six Up, I would take Fay Fay along with Smart Giant and Longwah Supreme. If both Size horses were to win and even if you were daft enough to take the entire fields in the other four legs, the Six Up Bonus would not cover your outlay. Even if you were to win, you would have lost and which is a stupid to way to bet to win. Duh!

Elsewhere, the big Douglas Whyte-John Size Big Day Out I was predicting has come-a-cropper as the trainer has booked Darren Beadman for many rides and with Whyte on a number of horses for other trainers, especially quite a few for Tony Millard and a book of rides which has made me go, Eh. One supposes that this is the “deal or the “penance” the Whyte Man has to pay if he wants to be Kunta Kinte and keep the ride on Millard’s Ambitious Dragon: Ride some others which are nowhere as good but which could win/place and then keep the ride on The Good One.

Meanwhile, David Ferraris desperately needs a winner as does Sean Woods and “The Hoarse Whisperer” has booked Whyte- who else?- for his White Hart Lane and seems to have brought over Weichong Marwing to get the best outta his Sweet Orange to try and overturn the tables on Fay Fay, Longwah Supreme and “Jim Dandy’s Smart Giant and Captain Sweet. Eve with a hard squeeze, I cannot see Sweet Orange squirting for The Marwing Man.

As for White Hart Lane? Nah. Though a Tottenham Hotspur fan for decades, I cannot see this horse beating, let’s say, Capital Champion or Grand Champion. Whyte is a very good jokey. He is not Merlin The Magician and White Hart Lane is no Jimmy Greaves- and which shows the last time Spurs had some real success.

Ferraris aka “The Hoarse Whisper also has Liberator entered for the meeting in Race 11 and, if it hasn’t already peaked and in need of a break, it should be amongst the money. Frankly, if Jeff Lloyd cannot get the best out of this horse, I’d just drop-kick it. Like Ferraris’ Semos and Kyara which Ferraris lost to John Moore, this horse has come to win and sucked in punters but has then petered out at the last moment. I think its best days are behind him. In this same race- and it’s a very open race with some of the newer horses- and good ones- having drawn the car park- I cannot believe that the overnight favourite is the Derek Cruz-trained Carthage, the horse which joined the John Moore yard with a big reputation, and then left for Cruz when the whole John Moore Syndicate had an argy-bargy. It had one win for Cruz and has been pottering around ever since. Not me, this one. I’ll take the Liberator over it any day.

Overall, there are way too many Ifs and Buts following the horses of David Ferraris and Sean Woods and if they win, great for the two trainers who are good blokes. Me, I would be looking at some of Tony Cruz’s horses with Matthew Chadwick aboard, Richard Gibson’s “Beauty horse in Race 2 and some of the rides of The “Zac Attack” Purton and Tye Angland and what they are riding for the Chinese trainers. For these trainers, they want to get The Year Of The Dragon off to a fiery start by banging home some winners as local owners will want that thing called “face”. Fail and these owners will be all over their asses like a bad rash.

Who will win the first race of this Lunar New Year Meeting? Jeez, it’s tough as bad barrier draws have dented the chances of many with the form to win. I’ll put my samosas on the wicket and go for the rides of Matthew Chadwick and Zac Purton- Marvel Plus or General Danroad, respectively, and the Year Of The Dragon firing.