Double the Power for Ireland in the LONGINES Hong Kong Sprint

A double dose of Power will hit Hong Kong on Friday morning when Ireland’s leading speedsters Sole Power and Slade Power touch down at Chek Lap Kok airport ahead of the LONGINES Hong Kong International Races at Sha Tin on Sunday, 8 December.

The Edward Lynam-trained duo will bid to secure a first European victory in the G1 LONGINES Hong Kong Sprint (1200m), in which last year’s winner Lord Kanaloa will attempt to follow-up for Japan and snare a sixth career G1 success: only Falvelon (2000 & 2001) and the great Silent Witness (2003 & 2004) have won the race back-to-back.

With international G1 scorers like Hong Kong’s Lucky Nine and Jwala from Britain alongside top local sprinters such as Eagle Regiment, Charles The Great, Frederick Engels, Go Baby Go and SterlingCity, The Turf World Championships’ 14-runner speed test promises to be a cracker.

“The LONGINES Hong Kong Sprint has not been the best race for the Europeans but if you don’t try, you won’t succeed,” said Lynam, who saddled Sole Power to run ninth behind Lucky Nine in the 2011 edition.

His stable stalwart is no stranger to overseas travel. Sole Power’s last start in Ireland came back in August 2011 and his 18 runs since then have taken him on regular excursions to Britain, as well as Hong Kong, France and twice to Dubai. The four-year-old Slade Power is facing his first long-haul assignment.

“Slade Power and Sole Power left the yard on Wednesday (November 27) and are on their way to Hong Kong. They are in good form and the trip over should not be a problem,” said Lynam of his stars, who both sport the colours of owner Sabena Power.

“You just hope they travel well and perform to their best on the day. They are going over there very fit – all their main work is done and they will just keep ticking over. The main thing is to keep them healthy and well and make sure they do not get dehydrated.”

Lynam, who trains his string in CountyMeath, has successfully plotted two major raids on Britain this season with his stars and is hoping to rewrite the record book that shows Britain’s Benbaun in 2006 as the only European raider to have made the frame in the LONGINES Hong Kong Sprint.

Sole Power, the long-time stable stalwart, notched his second career G1 in the King’s Stand Stakes (1000m) at Royal Ascot in June – his first came in the Nunthorpe Stakes at York in 2010. The emerging Slade Power earned a deserved big one in the G2 British Champions Sprint (1200m) at Ascot in October to cap an eight-race campaign that yielded three wins and two G1 placings – second in the Haydock Sprint Cup (1200m) and third in the July Cup (1200m).

“Slade Power came out of Ascot really well and there was not a bother on him. I thought it was a good, tough performance on ground that would have been softer than ideal. He only sweats up going down to the start. I would be more worried if he didn’t because that’s just him. He will love the ground in Hong Kong as he ran very well in the July Cup (third) on fast ground.

“Sole Power ran well in the Abbaye (sixth) on ground that was too soft for him, and he will also love the ground out there.”

Whilst Slade Power has proven adept at 1200m and around a left-hand turn, Sole Power has something to prove on both fronts. All of the six-year-old’s seven career wins have been achieved down a straight 1000m and of his six attempts at 1200m, his only two placed efforts came back in his juvenile days in 2009.

“We just hope that as he is a bit older and wiser he will get the trip. He ran well in the July Cup (fifth) over six furlongs this summer and with more luck he would have finished in the first three,” observed Lynam.

“They have both earned the right to run so we will give it a go and are very happy with them. Providing they get a nice draw, I would be expecting good performances from both of them.”

Did you like this? Share it:
Leave A Comment

© 2018 Racenews · One Bird Design · RSS Feed · Log in