Trainer John Moore is confident that he will have Military Attack ‘absolutely peaking’ for the Group 1 Hong Kong Cup (2000m) at Sha Tin on Sunday.
Military Attack finished fifth behind California Memory in the 2012 Hong Kong Cup but in the past twelve months has stamped himself as one of the best 2000 metre horses in the world; taking out the Group 1 Queen Elizabeth II Cup (2000m) at Sha Tin in April before recording a dominant win in the Singapore Airlines International Cup (2000m) at Kranji three weeks later.
The Oratorio gelding has been unable to win in his two previous starts this preparation, finishing sixth in the Group 2 Sha Tin Trophy (1600m) and third in the Group 2 Jockey Club Cup (2000m), but Moore told The Hong Kong Jockey Club that he has been happy with the performances of the five-year-old.
“His first run was very impressive, considering that he had a pretty tough task, and the next run he drew a wide gate and we used him for speed,” Moore said.
“We know that they ran a two minute for that distance and having to use him early and asking him to do it in the last quarter would have been quiet a task if he had got up and won.”
The Hong Cup is set to be one of the most competitive races at Sha Tin this weekend; with Jockey Club Cup winner Endowing, French superstar Cirrus Des Aigles, Hong Kong Derby winner Akeed Mofeed and Cox Plate runner Side Glance all included in the final field.
Moore admitted that he has not looked too closely at Military Attack’s rivals in the Group 1 event but is delighted with the condition of his star galloper and believes that he is the horse to beat this weekend.
“I feel like I will have him absolutely peaking on the day,” Moore said.
“To tell you the truth I haven’t really looked at the field in any depth.
“There is plenty of speed but I will be putting my concentration on his workload leading up until the eighth.
“A few days prior we will have a close look and make some inquiries from those that are in the know about our competitors from overseas but I am going into the race with very high hopes.
“I believe that he is the horse to beat.”
Military Attack ($3.80) is a narrow favourite in Hong Kong Cup betting markets from Endowing ($4), Cirrus Des Aigles ($4.20) and Akeed Mofeed ($5.50).