EASTER IN THE VALLEY: HOP TO IT

HOP TO IT 1

happy wednesday cube

It might have been raining cats, dogs, three winners ridden by Neil Callan, outsiders galore, and a winner at over 100 to 1 for apprentice Jack Wong on a horse almost no one had heard of, but it was also about castanets and hot sunny rhythms at the Beer Garden. Everyone really was singing- and winging it- in the rain.

HOP TO IT 2

HOP TO IT 3

Carnivale was on stage, and it’s now a proven fact that the Latino-influenced musical sextet, has transformed the centre stage at the Beer Garden forever. Who knew our Happy Wednesday generation actually wanted to do the Happy Dance? Of course, they do and from now on be prepared to have more of the same soon when our Digital Nights promotion takes place. More of the same- but with some EDM- Electronic Dance Music- with DJs, dancers and the music of Carnivale, pictured below with guest member of the band, and champion Hong Kong jockey Joao Moreira.

HOP TO IT 4

This Wednesday, Easter comes to Happy Valley racecourse for two consecutive mid-week race meetings, and apart from all the activities going on in all the venues- competitions, plenty of Godiva chocolates, ‘live’ music, people meeting people, plenty running around with bunny ears, Hong Kong’s United Nations of Racing who can be seen up close and personal- there will be Easter fashions on parade. These will namely be hats designed by noted milliners Jay Cow and Noeleen Armstrong Kish, and which will be introduced to everyone on Wednesday by our friend and model- and very savvy business woman- Cara G, and popular local singer JW.

HOP TO IT 5

HOP TO IT 6

We’re also betting that the small group of rookie racing fans who backed Emperor Victory, the over 100 to 1 winner mentioned earlier, will return to Adrenaline looking for more good luck in their new lucky hangout.

HOP TO IT 7

And on the subject of Adrenaline, new host Hannah Butler, girlfriend of jockey Chad Schofield, will be back to keep everyone updated on The Six Up Challenge, where our novice racing fans take on the experts. And with no one winning the Six Up last Wednesday, there’ll be a sizeable bonus up for grabs on Wednesday.

HOP TO IT 8

—————————————–

THE BATTLE OF THE YOUNG GUNS

HOP TO IT 10

Popular female apprentice Kei Chiong made her eagerly anticipated debut riding at Happy Valley last Wednesday. And though with just one ride on the night, it was more of a “familiarity tour” of the tight city track, which the girl handled with great maturity. She even took the unnecessary bollocking received after the horses crossed the line from a senior jockey for what he thought was her causing interference during the course of the race with a shrug of the shoulders. Kei Chiong is no pushover.

HOP TO IT 11

There’s a friendly rivalry building between her and fellow apprentice Jack Wong, and it will be interesting to follow their on-track duels. With his over 100 to 1 winner on Wednesday, Jack is in front at the moment with fourteen winners whereas Kei, though now on five winners after winning on Gallant Rock after a strong front-running ride at Shatin on Sunday, has shown considerable improvement since her return to racing after a slight injury. It should also be noted that young Kei has ridden TEN second place getters!

HOP TO IT 12

Meanwhile, though champion jockey Brazilian Joao Moreira had a very rare off day last week, watch him bounce back and be amongst the winners on Wednesday. The Magic Man’s wand can never be in storage for long as he proved on Sunday by winning three races including upsetting hotpot Luger by taking out the Class 1 Lion City Handicap aboard the John Moore-trained Rewarding Hero.

HOP TO IT 13

There’s also a great deal of interest in the BMW Hong Kong Derby on March 20 at Shatin, and the Happy Wednesday Racing Rookies are going out on a limb and tipping the Magic of Moreira to win the prestigious race aboard the Tony Cruz-trained Giovanni Canaletto.

HOP TO IT 14

Despite the race favourites expected to be Sun Jewellery and Werther, our Racing Rookies have Blizzard and Helene Paragon as the main dangers with Sun Jewellery definitely a huge chance. Time will tell. And remember that the date with destiny for the best 4-year-old gallopers in Hong Kong is March 20 at Shatin with an absolutely incredible lineup of truly world class riding talent, and the drawing power of martial arts actor and Ambassador for the BMW HK Derby Donnie Yen.

——————————————

WHAT WILL MAKE YOU A HORSE RACING FAN?

The racing purists go to the races for usually one reason: to beat the odds and win.

promo shot of people placing bets

Others go racing for the thrill and excitement of the sport and their love of horses.

horses in the paddock parade at Happy Valley

Many others, no matter how interested they might be in what was known as “The Sport Of Kings” are looking for an entry point into the sport- a raison d’être to be horse players.

horse racing

We recently asked a few Happy Wednesday regulars what it would take for them to join the fascinating and often very complex world of horse racing.​ No one is the same, so, below are a very odd mix of answers. But in 2016, and this technology-driven world, some of the answers make perfect sense.

technology

Winning all the time.

Winning2

Getting to know the jockeys and seeing who’s the nicest. I’ll at least then have someone to follow in a race and cheer on as a fan.

karis

Someone explaining to me in very simple terms all the terminology and the various ways to win in horse racing.

A voice activated app that I can download and literally answers all my questions about horse racing.

kitten fish

Following the jockey I am following via ​​Helmetcam will add to the thrill of any race.

An app or game where I can watch a preview of a race before it has been run and programmed by proven racing experts. I can then decide to follow what I see, or fine tune the game to suit my needs.

racing game

Go to the races with (illusionists) like David Blaine or Kris Angel and have them win every race for me.

david blaine

Meeting good looking and like-minded young people at the races. Don’t want to just sit there with my parents and their friends.

with friends

Something interesting to do or watch between races. Waiting for the next race to start takes an eternity.

at the beer garden

Some kinda cool party after the races where I can meet young racing fans and the jockeys.

zac at adrenaline

Getting closer to the horses, getting to know all about them, and coming to see how my favourite one is doing.

white horse

——————————————

TWO OF HONG KONG RACING’S FEEL GOOD MOMENTS

Joao Moreira rode a treble and won the Jockey Challenge at Shatin on Sunday- which was great. But nothing came close to the special send off given to that brave old warrior and Champion Sprinter Lucky Nine.

After giving so much to Hong Kong over and over again- in this city and overseas- the mighty galloper, one of the family to his owners- Dr Chang Fuk-to and his wife Maria, trainer Caspar Fownes, and regular jockey Brett Prebble, will soon be spending his days at his new home at Living Legends in Melbourne where we’re sure he’ll catch up with his old mates from Hong Kong- former Champion Miler Good Ba Ba and one-time World Champion Sprinter Silent Witness.

TWO OF 1

TWO OF 2

TWO OF 3

The other Feel Good racing moment on the weekend was seeing popular young jockey Karis Teetan, one of the true good guys of racing, embraced by his family, who were visiting Hong Kong for the first time, after the Mauritian Magician’s win aboard Royale Elegance to take out the Singapore Turf Club Trophy. Let’s never think horse racing doesn’t have a heart. It’s definitely there. It’s just sometimes hard to find. More scenes like this, please.

TWO OF 4

TWO OF 5

———————————-

ASK THE DUDE

party on dudes

To many, horse racing has a language all of its own. ​From the outside looking in, all the various terms and terminology give them instant whiplash and some instant noodles that results in instant brain freeze.

This is why we suggest that you​,​ Ask The Dude. And if he gets it all wrong, we’ll put you on the right path. Promise.

Helmet: What the Hell’s Angels dudes don’t need to wear cos their heads are too big.

helmet head

Real meaning: ​Head gear that must be worn by all jockeys to protect against injury, all helmets must meet specific international safety standards.

HKJC jockey wearing helmet

———————————-

Phar Lap: The old way of saying, Like far out, dude.

far out man

Real meaning:​ born in New Zealand, winner of the 1930 Melbourne Cup and one of the greatest race horses in history who traveled to race in North America. He died unexpectedly and mysteriously in California in 1932. At the time of his death, he’d won 37 of 51 starts and was the 3rd highest earning stakes winner in the world.

———————————-

Odds: Some really ​​weird looking dudes.

aliens

Real meaning:​ ​the numbers used to show the payoff against the stake if the wager is successful. For example, a successful $500 bet on Horse ABC to win at 2 to 1 odds means a $1500 return (minus the racetrack’s fee or takeout)

HKJC image that shows odds

———————————-

​​Bookie: Someone who collects books. Also known as a nerd.

Library

Real meaning:​ an individual or organization who collects bets for a fee​ at agreed upon odds. This is legal in some countries such as England and Ireland and in the United States but only in the State of Nevada.

Bookmaker at Aintree

———————————-

Sprinter: ​​​​Usain Bolt.

Usain Bolt

Real meaning:​ ​race horse that is most successful over shorter distances or sprint races (less than 1 mile in length)

HKJC photo of best current sprinter

———————————-

​​Stayer: Guy who’s great in the sack.

catbed

Real meaning:​ horse with stamina and who can stay with the front runner(s) throughout the race​

great HKJC stayer

———————————-

Miler: A brand of Ovaltine also spelt as Milo.

Milo

Real meaning:​ horse that does best racing over longer distances of a mile or more​

ABLE_FRIEND_650

———————————-

Race caller: Donald Trump

Donald trump make america white again

Real meaning:​ The person who narrates the racing action, where the horses are on the track as the race progresses, and calls the order as they cross the finish line​

———————————————————————————-

Racing to win- and having FUN! How it works…

THE HAPPY WEDNESDAY DAILY 7

1b

Treble (1)

6 up new

A tip: This can be a fun way to try and win BIG by pooling your resources with friends. The more choices, the bigger the outlay, so take the following as a guide: The Six Up goes from Race 3 to Race 8. If you and your friends pick two horses in each race- 2x2x2x2x2x2- this will cost the team HK$640 for a $10 ticket. Too expensive? Take the Six Up for $5, which will cost you HK$320. Or take it for even $2. The key is to have fun by winning with friends!

winning with friends

———————————-