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THE NATTY PROFESSOR OF HK RACING..,

He’s the only person in horse racing, we know, anywhere in the world, who never ever loses. Run into quasi celeb Natalis Chan, below, at the races and he’ll rush over to tell you how much he’s won.


After being bedazzled by his latest hair colouring, one sighs and listens to the same old song. It’s said as a whisper, but it so darn loud, it can spook horses. Even those few left in Macau.

The actor, singer, television host and one-time celebrity horse trainer in Macau is known by many to proudly talk about the tips he receives from trainers with mainly horses in the lower grades, and information received from track work riders. He’s also deliriously happy to show you his winning tickets. Crass? Gauche? Dumb? A little. Some say he can’t lose because he bets on every horse in a race. We know…


So, when people started telling us that the Chinese racing media had reported three Hong Kong showbiz veterans snaring Saturday’s $5m Triple Trio AND winning a “big race”, we immediately thought of Nat Chan. And we were correct.

Natalis Chan also loves being in winning photographs. Here he is last Saturday being one of the connections of “big race” winner Dance With Dragon. He’s the blond.


As for old Nat, singer Alan Tam, his one-time band mate when in the strangely spelt pop group The Loosers, and a film director friend winning the $5m Triple Trio? Maybe. But it was won by a $4 ticket. There’s a huge carryover to Sunday’s meeting. Still, it makes for another winning story in the world of Looser Natalis Chan.

AND THEN THERE IS POTATO HEAD…

By the way, the Loosers were managed by another real character in Hong Kong racing circles- Pato Leung- before renaming them the Wynners. He’s always had a problem with spelling despite once being the entertainment writer for the now defunct China Mail.

Today known as Dr Pato Leung, and managing the Good Time Racing Syndicate, he once had a half decent galloper. Thinking it was another Frankel, he was notorious for moving the galloper from stable to stable. Below is Pato, third from right in shades, and his crew when he had a horse with trainer Paul O’Sullivan. Of course, this partnership didn’t last long.

He’s also known for being one of a handful of owners fired by champion trainer Tony Cruz. Why was he fired by the Putha Man? Not for the reasons why that feuding ownership syndicate behind the Cruz trained Blazing Speed was shown the door. That’s a story for another day based on greed.

A homeopathic doctor these days, the good Doctor Pato, below, wanted the Putha Man to use special natural herbs in the feed of the horse he had at the time with the champion trainer.

The Putha Man didn’t go with the flow, man. The only flow was horse and owner being washed out to sea. It wasn’t a pretty sight.

THE KAH KAH DEPARTMENT

Tony McEvoy will be gaining a very good new stable jockey when South African Barend Vorster, below, leaves Singapore for South Australia.


Vorster replaces Jamie Kah, who, below with McEvoy when they were winning everything worth winning in Adelaide, despite apparently having plenty of property and other business interests in Adelaide, has left South Australia to try and make a name for herself in Victoria.


Kah isn’t the only rider and trainer in South Australia who’ve recently headed for greener pastures. After all, the future of horse racing in that part of Australia is hardly looking rosy with the government not seeing the pastime as something worth financing.

So why would Vorster leave Singapore for shaky new shores? Who knows? Maybe he wants to be the next Jeff Lloyd?

Perhaps he could help out in the mentoring of Hong Kong apprentices going through their apprenticeships in South Australia, mainly Adelaide?

Judging by the number of suspensions that have derailed the Poon Train- Matthew Poon who could do no wrong when riding for the David and Richard Jolly stables mainly in Morphetville- and the rather puzzling Dylan Mo, it might be time for the HKJC to look elsewhere if these kids are ever to graduate into the senior riding ranks in Hong Kong…


Meanwhile, though the Singapore Turf Club will lose Barend Vorster, word is that another South African- Callan Murray- will join the jockey ranks in the Lion City after a miserable stint in Hong Kong.


The odds of another expat jockey leaving Hong Kong must also be very high. He, too, has hardly had a great start to this season after even struggling to ride winners for all of last season. How many chances that one get?

Though both are nice young people, it’s all about results. It’s also about who might possibly be replacements. Replacements capable of delivering.

THE (SAMBA) BOYS ARE BACK IN TOWN!


Not even an attack of the Flying Murtys befalling the Lally Man and Amigo Andrew could take away from the domination at Shatin last Saturday of The Boys From Brazil.


Silvestre de Sousa rode a treble, Joao Moreira rode a double- five of the winners of the ten race card with the highlight being the win of the John Size trained Tornado Twist.

That was already winner number 23 for the Magic Man since his return to Hong Kong from distant shores- did he REALLY leave for Japan?-whereas Silvestre de Sousa seems determined to forge strong relationships with every trainer in Hong Kong with good gallopers in their yard.

It’s interesting to see John Moore use him more and more and the successful partnership he’s forged with Tony Millard and especially his very good dirt galloper Elusive State, below.

“Millie” isn’t the easiest trainer to ride for- ask Maxime Guyon, Douglas Whyte, Chad Schofield etc etc. But the budding bromance with de Sousa could be a stayer.

More importantly, how long, or quick, before he returns to Hong Kong on a permanent basis?


Hong Kong sports fans have always had an affinity with Brazil, especially its football team and players going all the way back to the brilliant Pele.

Now local racing fans just might have two Brazilians for the price of one for a couple of seasons. They’re also a very marketable commodity.

#NatChan #HKracing #BarendVorster #TonyMcEvoy #JamieKah #JoaoMoreira #SilvestredeSousa #horseracing #CallanMurray #MatthewPoon #DylanMo #apprentices