Typhoon Haima could blow the chances of leading Hong Kong jockey Joao Moreira claiming his first Cox Plate victory on French galloper Vadamos.
Moreira and fellow Hong Kong based jockey Sam Clipperton are in danger of being grounded in Hong Kong and unable to make it to Melbourne for the Moonee Valley Racing Club’s two day Spring Carnival because of the imminent arrival of Typhoon Haima.
The Magic Man Moreira rides Vadamos in the Group 1 $3m Cox Plate (2040m) while Clipperton is booked to ride the Gai Waterhouse and Adrian Bott trained English in the Group 1 $1m Manikato Stakes (1200m) on Friday night.
Typhoon Haima is expected to make landfall northeast of Hong Kong on Friday and Hong Kong Jockey Club stewards are monitoring the situation closely.
Hong Kong Turf Club steward Steve Railton said that he had made contact with chief Racing Victoria steward Terry Bailey outlining the concerns of Moreira and Clipperton making it back to ride at Hong Kong on Sunday.
“The jockeys are due to leave Hong Kong on Thursday, but the concern is not them leaving but will they be able to get back here to ride on Sunday,” Hong Kong steward Steve Railton told The Sydney Morning Herald.
“There are two typhoons in the region and the one is supposed to hit Hong Kong on Friday and Saturday. We have to make the call on if they will be allowed to go before Thursday and have communicated that to Terry Bailey and his panel in Victoria, so they are prepared.”
“We had a situation last year where Joao Moreira and Zac Purton were not able to get back for one our meetings after group 1 rides in October and being our two champion riders it had a significant effect on betting turnover.
“With our racing and the smaller group of jockeys if Joao Moreira and Sam Clipperton were unable to get back it would mean significant late changes to riders, because they would both have full books, and flow-on effects on turnover.”
As well as being booked to ride $14 chance Vadamos in the Cox Plate, Moreira is also down to ride Gretna in the Listed $120,000 Crockett Stakes (1200m) and Grand Marshal in the Group 2 $300,000 Moonee Valley Gold Cup (2500m) for Chris Waller, and Khaseeb in the Group 2 $200,000 Fillies Classic (1600m) and Tashbeeh in the Group 2 $200,000 Crystal Mile (1600m) for the Lindsay park Team.
Cox Plate market order at Ladbrokes.com.au: $2 Winx, $3.50 Hartnell, $14 Vadamos, Yankee Rose, $17 Black Heart Bart, $19 Hauraki, $21 Lucia Valentina, $71 Awesome Rock, Happy Clapper, $126 Happy Trails.