In form jockey Tommy Berry wasted no time settling into his new surrounding in Hong Kong by winning the Group 1 HK$14m The Audemars Piguet QEII Cup (2000m) at Sha Tin on Sunday only hours after arriving from Australia.
Berry had the John Moore trained Miliatry Attack beautifully positioned for the entire race before easing the five year old out on the home turn to secure a clear run to line to take his sixth Group 1 win.
The ever confident Berry is riding the crest of a winning wave and as well as riding five Group 1 winners this season in Australia had to leave the Sydney racing scene for a three month stint in Hong Kong while he was leading the jockey’s premiership with fifty-five wins, half a win ahead of Hugh Bowman.
Berry was also enjoying a great Sydney Autumn Carnival and although he failed to ride a winner on the final day of the Carnival, he collect the big one the week before with the Chris Waller trained Sacred Falls in the Group 1 $2m BMW Doncaster Mile (1600m) at Randwick.
And that followed on from his success in the Group 1 $3.5m Tooheys New Golden Slipper (1200m) at Rosehill on April 6 on the Gai Waterhouse trained filly Overreach.
Berry only flew out of Sydney Saturday night but was back at the top of his game in the QEII Cup.
“They really ran to the first corner – probably a bit quicker than I anticipated – but I just got my horse into a nice rhythm,” said Berry.
“They backed it off and then quickened it up again going to the half-mile.”
“I probably had to come out a little bit earlier than I wanted to but we got forced out, and watching the replays of this horse in the past he’s got a really long sustained run -he looked like a really nice horse and he showed that today. It was a beautiful training effort, I’ve got to say – perfect with a few weeks in between runs.”
Berry is just coming to terms with his remarkable run over the last nine months and hopes it continues to the end of his Hong Kong stint in July.
“It doesn’t get much better than this,” Berry said.
“I’m only 22 and I don’t think I’ll be able to beat what I’ve done in the last 12 months in my whole career. But that comes with a lot of support from a lot of great owners and trainers in Australia and now Hong Kong.”