Sunny Boy (133lb) delighted his connections when rallying for Purton to repel a late challenge from Ambitious Heart (122lb) in race three, the Class 3 Purves Quaich Handicap (1200m).
“To see him do that, go to the front, knuckle down and do that was really nice, especially when Zac (Purton) pulled the whip through to the right – it made the difference between winning and losing, in my opinion,” trainer John Moore said.
Sunny Boy ran fourth in Group 2 company at his third and final start in Australia pre-import but a series of injuries meant that he was sidelined for 26 months until a debut fifth behind Voyage Warrior at Sha Tin two weeks ago. The Matthew Wong-owned four-year-old prevailed at odds of 1.8.
“Being off the scene for so long and having so many soundness issues, and having such a patient owner – I said we'd give him one more chance but we introduced a new supplement and there have been no setbacks. To get the win today was great,” Moore added.
The handler nailed a treble when Chad Schofield drove Smart Rocket to success in the Class 4 Chan Trophy Handicap (1600m) and Purton delivered again for the stable on Grand Chancellor in the Class 3 Stevenson Cup Handicap (2000m).
Ricky Yiu has high hopes for his yard's buzz horse Voyage Warrior and the trainer notched another first-up winner down the straight track when the three-year-old Allied Agility took the Class 4 Swaine Cup Handicap (1000m) under Martin Harley. The Irish rider's Hong Kong tally now stands at four.
Yiu struck a double when the four-year-old Bellagio opened his account under Umberto Rispoli in the Class 4 Li Cup Handicap (1400m).
Victor Wong arrowed the Tony Cruz-trained Multimillion to success down the 1000m straight in the Class 3 Arculli Trophy Handicap. Neil Callan, fresh from a Happy Valley double mid-week, landed the finale on Chairmen's Day, the Class 4 Ip Jug Handicap (1200m) on the Tony Millard-trained Silver Fig.