They’re singing, “Ring Out The Old, Ring In The New” at 1 Sports Road these days with British-born racing commentator John Blance, pictured below, joining other new hires at the HKJC in Pat Cumming- Racing Communications- and current form analyst and some-time race commentator Anthony Manton.

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What does all this mean? We’re tipping a complete makeover for the on-air broadcasting team- a far less “Okker” sound cutting through the airwaves, and a much more International team in place with a view towards further strengthening the global branding of the HKJC. It had to happen and the only surprise is that all this didn’t happen earlier.

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GAZZAWORLD CONTINUES TO HEAD SOUTHWARDS

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Our old mate Gary Moore’s stocks continue to take a Southwards trajectory. News from Sydney say that horses continue to exit the stable with increasing regularity and that even brother John has moved all his horses to the stables of Peter and Paul Snowden. Blood is thicker than water? Not when it comes to the Family Moore.

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As for rumours that Gazza is sniffing around trying to gain an entree into Swingabore, we can’t see it though the odds of trainer Tom Dabernig setting up shop in the somewhat off-kilter and often surreal Lion City, where nothing is real and much to get hung up about, are very high.

Having said this, with the cobalt albatross weighing heavily over racing in Victoria- and with the opening of the Sam Kavanagh can of worms- we’re unsure how many Melbourne-based trainers- and vets from almost anywhere in Oz- will be welcome in other racing jurisdictions.

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One very much doubts all the dirty laundry has been aired and just exactly how much will be headed off at the pass as nepotism- and “protectionism- rears its ugly head and “Dr Needles” is given a Get Out Of Jail Free card.

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The revelation of all these cases to do with horses pumped full of cobalt, cheating trainers, the involvement of vets in Cheaters Anonymous and a very dark cloud hanging over the sport have also made many owners in Hong Kong cross Oz off their bucket list when it comes to racing their horses in the land going down under.

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LUCY WARWICK IS NO GIBBERER

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When we get it wrong, we get it wrong, and when we do, we’re happy to own up. Listening to young gun WA jockey Lucy Warwick go through her book of rides yesterday on our favourite racing radio programme- Perth’s The Big Breakfast- she was certainly no “gibberer” as we had written recently- and with a photograph of the exquisite Kayla Nisbet run by mistake to REALLY balls things up.

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Kayla Nisbet: Glamour jockey and TV presenter material 

Lucy Warwick was extremely candid, detailed about her chances and with an effusive personality that’s very infectious, whereas watching some of her rides at Belmont yesterday, especially on Dubai Escapade to bring up her hundredth winner of the season, it’s hard to imagine that the girl is so new to the riding ranks.

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The girl can ride as can New Zealand’s Danielle Johnson, Melbourne’s Katelyn Mallyon and Sydney-based Winona Costin. An International female jockeys challenge series? Why not? And let’s get Kayla Nisbet to host/present the series on television. The girl is ready for prime time.

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SHORT CUTS

It’s “compact” in size and has only had three starts in Hong Kong for one win at 33 to 1 over 1000 metres, and now the connections of the Chris So-trained Sing Sing Sing have decided to sell sell sell and send the galloper back to Oz where it was bought after winning a trial at Mudgee by ten lengths.

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Is it us or is Amigo Brett’s hair getting darker- no blacker- every week and taking on an almost neo Greek-Roman look? Yesterday, we glanced towards the screen and visions of Caligula and Commudus from “Gladiator” filled our heads.

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Amigo Brett Davis?

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FROM THE RACING TWITTERVERSE

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THE FAST TRACKER GOES IN SEARCH OF A PREBBLE TREBLE

PREBBLE TREBLE 1

There’s much being talked about these days- the “resurrection” and “Renaissance period” of Brett Prebble, the last-minute lifeline thrown to Gerald Mosse, where he could end up staying on in Hong Kong as the stable jockey for- wait for it- Manfred KL Man- and the unusually long string of outs Douglas Whyte is undergoing at the moment.

PREBBLE TREBLE 2

After a number of months in the wilderness where he even lost the huge support systems he once had in the David Hall and Casper Fownes stables, Brett Prebble is back riding as well as anyone. He’s still to get aboard some Group winners, but he’s putting in the hard work to be a force to be reckoned with next season when he’s certain to be very much in demand. Right now, it’s the Rolling And Rocking Brett Prebble Travelling Revival Bandwagon with many jumping aboard.

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As for Monsieur Mosse, it doesn’t matter if they’re “goats”, but the great French swordsman seems to have come to the realisation that, at this juncture in his career, he needs to stay in Hong Kong, and is pulling out, well, all stops, on every horse the Group One winning jockey rides even if they’re what he might have once dismissed as “Class 5 goats”.

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In fact, on Wednesday when the great French swordsman won on Medic Swordsman- surely worth a sizeable bet based on two different types of swordsmen getting together- it was aboard one of those Class 5 “goats”.

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Meanwhile, the win of Gun Pit has done its bit for the endorsement of dirt racing in Hong Kong though, despite the cheering squad behind it, mainly due to this freakish galloper on this surface, it’s hard to see it being anything more than what it is now: The Sideshow Bob and Rodney Dangerfield of racing and a respite for the turf track.

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Still, the win of Gun Pit has given Hong Kong a specialist on the surface that might go onto bigger things in Dubai and America. And that’s a good thing for the image of Hong Kong racing much like the international successes on this surface of Rich Tapestry. It’s good for what it is. Nothing more and nothing less.

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The run of outs endured by Douglas Whyte- his Blue Period with close to fifty rides without a winner- is a more complicated subject. As the legendary jockey would be well aware, many have short memories, especially in Hong Kong, where one is only as good as their last win. Just ask Brett Prebble.

There are also some in racing here who would love to see the former champion jockey- and we all know who he- and they-are- be brought down with a thud. But, as he’s proven time and time again, when he’s being dismissed as “Past it”, that old Whyte Magic comes roaring back- and so do the sycophants.

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With this being his last meeting for the season before serving out a suspension, it’s imperative that Whyte breaks this hoodoo and bows out on a winning note. This will help towards reasonably good stable support for next season when both Prebble and Neil Callan will be going all out to take that coveted third spot on the premiership table behind the Moreira juggernaut and the lethal Zac Attack.

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Then again, Dougie Whyte can afford to say, “Stuff this” and go trample grapes in his vineyard in Tuscany.

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Dougie Whyte at home in his vineyard in Tuscany

As for today’s racing, it’s a tough looking card, especially the last few races. Jockeys to follow- like last week- look to be Mosse, and, especially, Prebble who looks like taking out the Jockey Challenge as he did on Wednesday.

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In the battle for the trainers premiership, John Moore looks like book ending the card and has another strong winning chance with Chevalier Star in the fourth. John Size will be lucky to saddle up two winners whereas Caspar Fownes could come away with one winner. Do I care about any of this? Not one iota as it does nada for my bank balance. It’s about three already very rich guys getting richer and who aren’t exactly going to “spread the wealth”. It’s as interesting to me as that chump- Donald Trump- becoming President of the United States.

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Me? I’ll be eyeing the Triple Trio bet where well over $12m is up for grabs. Eyeing something or someone and actually grabbing them are two very different kettle of halibut so don’t follow tipsters and watch your parking meter.

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RACE 1
3-5-2

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RACE 2
QUARTET (1-3)- 2-8-9-10-12

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RACE 3
(9)-1-7-10

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RACE 4
(3-7)- 2-5-12

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RACE 5

Drawn barrier three, the John Size-trained Modern Fortune is definite banker material following a good last start third over course and distance when drawn an outside barrier and ridden by Moreira. Brett Prebble takes over. and with him back riding with fire in his belly, this should win the race.

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What’s undone many who’ve tried to win the Triple Trio are the complete “no hopers” who have wrecked the best laid plans. Who might be the smokies here? Star Of Wai Bo and King Of Reason should not be left out despite the jockey bookings. Every dog and “unfashionable” jockey has their day.

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With this in mind, remember that a number of local trainers are trying their best to provide “just cause” why battling jockey Jacky Tong should have his contract renewed for next season.

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Tong, who, let’s face it, has done much donkey work to ensure no-hopers go around to get a relief in the ratings, is certain to be on a few horses over the handful of meetings left with reasonable winning chances- like Star Of Wai Bo here- and Namjong Blossoms in the last- as he battles to save his career by calling in some favours.

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(11)-1-2-4-7-10

RACE 6

Again, Brett Prebble should be to the fore in this second leg of the Triple Trio with his ride Happy Place after a decent, though wayward second to the much-improved Unicorn. It’s worth taking as a double banker with the Callan-ridden Circuit Fortune.

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As for the legs, the enigmatic Monsieur Mogok must be included along with Coup D’Etat, Best Hope and as a good roughie, Win Along.

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(1-2)-5-6-7-8-11

RACE 7

There’s not much separating Righteous (Mosse), Sun Pins (Whyte), and Griffin Trophy runner up Sky Hero, another good ride for A Man Called Horse- Brett Prebble.

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Away from these and as real roughies, don’t leave out Smiling Watch and the lightly weighted Baab Al Nasr. But, as in cricketing parlance, this race has a long tail.

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(3-5)-1-4-7-8-14

RACE 8
7-2-3-12

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RACE 9
(8-10)-1-2-3-4-6

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RACE 10
6-4-8-10

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RACE 11
5-8-4-9

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BEST BET: RACE 3 SIR JOHN (9)
NEXT BEST: RACE 7 SKY HERO (5)
LONGSHOT: RACE 11 NAMJONG BLOSSOMS (9)

PREBBLE TREBLE 37
The Magic Man after one too many magic mushrooms

SIX UP

R6-2
R7- 5
R8- 2-7-9-12
R9- 1-4-8-10
R10- 6-8
R11- 4-5-8-9

PARTING SHOT

PREBBLE TREBLE 38