Jockey Damien Oliver is set to make his return to Hong Kong a week earlier than expected after trainer John Moore sent out an SOS when Darren Beadman was hurt in a track mishap this morning.
Beadman was dislodged from three year old Lucky Together during morning barrier trials at Sha Tin and has sustained a suspected broken cheekbone.
Oliver was set to travel to Hong Kong after the Blue Diamond meeting next week to ride Irian in the Group 1 HK$8m Citibank Hong Kong Gold Cup (2000m), the second leg of the Hong Kong Triple Crown.
But with Beadman being out of action, Moore was quick to get the services of Oliver to replace the Melbourne Cup winning jockey on five of his mounts.
Sunday’s ten card program at Sha Tin features the running of the Group 1 HK$6m The Mercedes-Benz Hong Kong Classic Cup over 1800m.
Oliver be will riding Dan Excel, one of Moore’s five runners in the Classic Cup and the stable were hoping for a forward showing so as to life the four year olds rating to qualify him for the Group 1 HK$16 Mercedes-Benz Hong Kong Derby at Sha Tin in four weeks.
Beadman had been talking up the chances of Dan Excel after the Shamardal four year old surprised Moore when he rattled home for third over 1600m at his first Hong Kong start enticing Beadman to choose him above Moore’s other four runners.
“We felt that he was the one who was the up-and-coming type,” Beadman said before the barrier trial mishap.
“His first-up run was very good and there was a lot of improvement left in him. Plus, he needs to qualify for the Derby. He is borderline with the rating he has, but the higher up he can be, the better.”
Beadman who is currently equal fourth on the jockey’s table with twenty four wins for the season and is the second Australian jockey to get hurt in Hong Kong in recent times.
Brett Prebble is currently out of action after suffering a broken collarbone but is hoping for a quick recovery.
“Normally, it might be five or six weeks for a collarbone but I’m going to get it operated on and put a steel plate in. That speeds the process by a couple of weeks.”
Prebble has also begun treatment in the hyperbaric chamber which accelerates the natural healing process by increasing the blood flow and oxygen to the injured area on the recommendation of fellow jockey Jeff Lloyd who also used the chamber and returned to riding after an injury a lot quicker.
Oliver hasn’t got a ride in the Group 1 $750,000 Coolmore Lightning Stakes (1000m) at Flemington tomorrow but the best of his four rides are Fawkner in the Festival Of Racing Handicap (1720m) and the Mark Kavanagh trained Liveandletdie in the Heron Bridge Handicap (1200m).