Hampton Court overcame a tough run in transit to record a strong win in the 2014 Dulcify Quality at Royal Randwick this afternoon.
Hampton Court was expected to take up the running in the Dulcify Quality, but he was taken on by stablemate Duccio in the early stages of the race before he was challenged at the 450 metre mark by Deadset.
Deadset kept Hampton Court in a pocket coming around the final turn and he was trapped on the heels of Duccio and lost a couple of lengths.
Jockey Joao Moreira eventually found clear running on Hampton Court in the final stages of the race and he finished over the top of Duccio to claim the Dulcify Quality and stamp himself as a genuine contender for the Group 1 Spring Champion Stakes (2000m) at Royal Randwick next weekend.
Hong Kong-based Moreira was brought to Australia to partner He’s Your Man in the Group 1 Epsom Handicap (1600m), but he has picked up a strong book of rides on the Royal Randwick card and was delighted to be able to win the Listed event for Gai Waterhouse and connections.
“It is great, there is no word to describe how well that I am feeling about it,” Moreira said after the race.
“He is a lovely horse and he is very well prepared by connections and I am just a lucky boy to be sitting on his top of him today.
“He looks great and I did a little bit of homework on this horse and I knew that he was going to be off the bit in the last 600 metres and he was very much like that.
“When I really got him in a clear run in the straight he gave me everything that he has got and he got there.
“Thank you very much for the opportunity that I have had to be sitting on top of this horse today and congratulations once again to the connections.”
He’s Your Man has been one of the best backed runners in Epsom Handicap betting markets and Moreira said that he will be doing everything in his power to steer the imported galloper to victory and claim his maiden Group 1 victory in Australia.
“It would be nice, it would be fantastic,” Moreira said.
“I know my horse does have a little bit of a chance so I will be doing my best for sure.”
The Dulcify Quality win was Hampton Court’s first since he took out the Tal Beaumont Handicap (1400m) at Newcastle earlier this year.