The Group 1 $500,000 Rosehill Guineas (2000m) at Rosehill in March is on the agenda for Hong Kong Captain after the three year old scored a soft debut win at Mornington today.
Hong Kong Captain was eased down by jockey Michael Walker to record a one length win in the $25,000 Peninsula Home Hospice Maiden Plate (1200m) and trainer David Hayes thinks he had enough potential to head to the Sydney Autumn Carnival.
“David has some high hopes for him. He’ll go now to the CS Hayes and then off to Sydney for the (Randwick & Rosehill) Guineas,” stable foreman Bruno Rouge Serret said after the win.
“It was a good debut, he did everything right.”
Hong Kong Captian will get a good tester in the Group 3 $150,000 CS Hayes Stakes (1400m) at Flemington on February 21 before heading off to Sydney for the Group 1 $600,000 Royal Randwick Guineas (1600m) at Randwick on March 7 before the Rosehill Guineas on March 21.
Walker was impressed with the three year old gelding’s first up performance and can’t see way he won’t be able to run 2400m.
“He is a nice horse,” Walker said.
“I think he is going to make a really nice staying horse. I think he needs to mature a little bit more.”
Hayes has a traumatic past twenty-four hours with his showpiece Lindsay Park at Euroa under siege from bushfires that threatened the property last night and again today when the wind sprung up.
“There are some nervous times up there, hopefully everyone is on the same page,” Rouge Serret said.
Hayes and his staff worked all through the night to make sure his horses were safe but said that about a third of the property was damaged.
“The mountains around the property were on fire and when the winds shifted towards our place we had grass fires that were just so hot and intense and hard to fight that we retreated and just let the horses go freestyle,” Hayes told Racing Ahead.
“We basically went into save the horses mode and let them run free for a few hours and once the fire passed we rounded them all up and remarkably there were no injuries and the fire plan worked. We were very lucky.
“None of the real infrastructure was damaged, the stables were well protected but the outlying paddocks and fences were lost.”