The Hong Kong mile produced the most exciting finish of the afternoon. Jockey Olivier Doleuze denied Frankie Dettori a riding double. Good Ba Ba, Doleuze aboard, won over Creachadoir, Dettori up, by a short head. The pace was quick and Kongo Rikishio called the tune. In the run to the box, Creachadoir and Good Ba Ba separated themselves from the pack.
Good Ba Ba gained the edge in the waning yards. Jockey Doleuze did a flying dismount. It was a question of one flying dismount getting the better of another flying dismount.
Darjina, the French filly ran third and the fourth place went to Floral Pegasus. Excellent Art did not fire and the temperamental Aidan O'Brien trainee did not travel well at any point.
Jockey Olivier Doleuze called Good Ba Ba the best miler he has ridden. "He has such a great pace. He battled all the way. Things have been slow for me recently and this win makes it all so much better."
Hong Kong-based German trainer Andreas Schultz was delighted that his Hong Kong stint got a much needed boost.
"Since coming to HK, I have had a good time but needed a good horse to give me a boost and this is it. I came to HK in 2006 and this is a highlight in my career. I have won the German Oaks and Derby many times. I have no special targets for Good Ba Ba."
Simon Crisford commented on Creachadoir's race.
The Godolphin Racing Manager was happy. "He ran great. He is a lovely horse. He raised his game today. We will return next year.
Aidan O'Brien showed no disappointment when reacting to Excellent Art's effort. "He owes us nothing. You only come and hope. I am happy we were invited and delighted to be here."
Excellent Art was second in the QE II at Ascot in late September.
Despite drawn 13 in the Breeders' Cup Turf Mile, he was second at Monmouth Park. His come-from-behind style has not worked for him.
Good Ba Ba is by Lear Fan, a well known American stallion. Elle Meme is the mother and Zilzal is the dam's sire. Good Ba Ba is five.
A note on Doctor Dino. He is by Muhtathir. Logica is the dam. She is by Priolo.
Mr Winfred Engelbrecht-Bresges, Chief Executive Officer of the Hong Kong Jockey Club, was full of optimism.
"This is the best international day's racing we have had in Hong Kong. The atmosphere was tremendous. The racing was superb. Sacred Kingdom's championship effort in the Sprint and the battle between Ramonti and Viva Pataca are highlights we cannot forget easily."
The Hong Kong tote unit is ten HK dollars.
There are all kinds of gimmicks. In terms of handle, the most money in the world is bet in Hong Kong. Horse racing events are formal ceremonies. Press releases and photos and more information than you can digest, understand and use are hallmarks of the HK racing scene.
This is the last of the major international racing fixtures in 2007 but I believe Indian racing is moving up and will soon be a part of the international network.
With sponsorship on the rise, racing in India is destined to reach new heights. Three weeks left and I will be on Indian soil. I am excited. I am looking forward to being in Bangalore for the January Derby, in Mumbai for the Indian Derby and in Hyderabad for the Invitation Cup weekend.
In America, Hollywood Park hosted the Grade I Hollywood Turf Cup on Saturday.
The 2,400-metre race was won by Sunriver, Garrett Gomez up. The Todd Pletcher charge made it all and won by two and three quarter lengths. The time was 2 27.07 seconds. The turf was soft and called 'good' officially.
It was a race worth $250,000. It was Todd Pletcher's 56th graded win in 2007 and the 93rd stakes win this year. Sunriver paid $6.00 as the second choice.
Champs Elysees, the 17-10 chalk, was the bridesmaid.
Sunriver was winning his first Grade I race. Sunriver is four and is by Saint Ballado. The dam is Goulash by Mari's Book.
On Friday evening at Delta Downs in Louisiana, there was a dead heat in the Boyd Gaming's Delta Jackpot Stakes, a 1,700-metre race for juveniles. Turf War, Calvin Borel up, and Z Humor, Garrett Gomez aboard, could not be separated.
It was a purse of one million dollars. Golden Yank was third, a neck away, after overcoming a troubled passage.