O’Sullivan calling time on Hong Kong training career

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Paul O’Sullivan

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Expat New Zealand trainer Paul O’Sullivan has signalled to the Hong Kong Jockey Club that season 2021/22 will be his last.

A Hong Kong Jockey Club circular read: Trainer Paul O’Sullivan has notified the Club that he does not wish to be considered for a Trainer’s licence for the 2022/2023 racing season.

The Licensing Committee will meet on 10 June 2022 to consider all licensing matters for the commencement of the 2022/2023 racing season.

The veteran of almost two decades among Hong Kong’s training ranks, O’Sullivan has now sent out the winners of 512 races since relocating there in 2004, including more than a dozen at black-type level.

Highlights have included two Group 1 Hong Kong Sprint (1200m) triumphs with champion sprinter Aerovelocity, who also won at the elite level in Japan and Singapore; a Hong Kong Derby (2000m) with Vital King; and a Stewards’ Cup (1600m) with Fellowship – all of which were New Zealand-bred.

The affable 62-year-old, who is an 11-time champion trainer in New Zealand, is likely to return home at season’s end, with 12 meetings remaining.

O’Sullivan has 19 wins to his credit this season, including five-year-old gelding Shadow Runner who was a Class 4 winner at Happy Valley on Wednesday.

Like many nations, Hong Kong has endured a torrid couple of years plagued by COVID-19 restrictions in addition to political unrest.

Racing participants in the region have gone the extra mile to ensure the show goes on and turnover continues to thrive.

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