The old expression, “Horses For Courses” could have been created with the Happy Valley and Shatin racecourses in mind.

As many racing knows, there are what they call, “Valley specialists,” those horses that simply take to the smaller, tighter City track and are complete duffers when racing on the more spacious Shatin track. Why?

Perhaps- just perhaps- it has something to do with a horse’s eyesight which is around seven times bigger than that of a human being and where this might make them enjoy racing on one track more than the other.


Perhaps it’s something psychological?

Perhaps it has to do with the Happy Valley track being softer in the evenings and enjoyed more by some horses.

One person who knows all about this is trainer Tony Cruz, who, when Hong Kong’s Champion jockey, conquered the city track as, let’s not forget, it was the only racecourse there was when he was an apprentice.


On Wednesday, Tony has two supposed “Valley specialists” running in Key Witness though we believe both horses are just as effective in Shatin.

Key Witness is the latest “Witness” horse to race in Hong Kong for owner Archie Da Silva whose green and black colors are known for being carried by the great Silent Witness.

Key Witness has huge potential, but is a big baby still learning the game.

Wednesday’s race could still be part of a more long-term plan for the horse whereas Tony’s other runner- Smart Ball- has shown flashes of potential though it might have a problem carrying weight.

For more information on these horses and Tony Cruz, simply download the RacingTouch app onto your iPad from the Apple App store.