top of page


Updated: Jun 2


The Future of Golden Sixty

The longer this drags on, the more restless that the natives get…and which might see horse racing in Hong Kong making the mainstream news.




Hardly known by many in Hong Kong, let alone the long in the tooth local racing fans and museum pieces of their own, we got up with a jolt when one of our favourite race callers- the HKJC’s Mark McNamara- mentioned that the last race on the card on Sunday was the River Verdon Handicap and added that one can “still see River Verdon” at the aforementioned white elephant of a museum. 

Co-owned by Hong Kong racing stalwarts Sir Ronald Arculli and Sir Oswald Cheung, River Verdon was a champion race horse in Hong Kong and the city’s first winner of the Triple Crown.

Yes, one can “see” River Verdon, thanks to a fine job by a taxidermist, and standing there at the Hong Kong Museum of Racing that was opened in 1996.  

More spooky and also on display is another champion Hong Kong galloper- or at least the skeleton of Sanford Yung’s great Silver Lining.

Why not just call this supposed museum that’s now a popular taxi drop off spot in Sports Road The White Elephant and have it feature the years of odds and sods of HKJC merchandise? And perhaps have some of the executive hires who quietly came and went on “garden leave”well and truly stuffed.


By the way, River Verdon passed away in June of 2005.


It appears that dodgy racetracks are not bearing much fruit nor good vibes with trainers, jockeys, owners and those who look to betting on horses to improve their lives.

Rather harsh criticism has apparently been levelled recently at the spanking new Belmont racetrack in Western Australia by a couple of high profile trainers and jockeys.

We don’t know anything about any of this, but did think that the start of the eighth race at Belmont on Saturday was a complete shambles.

There were horses being examined and passed fit to run and ran like the last train to Clarkesville.

Another was withdrawn at the gates, and the bulk of the runners in the barriers for an inordinate amount of time, no doubt putting paid to their chances.

At least to us, one-time supporters of WA racing long before the premature hype surrounding Amelia’s Jewel and dreams of Royal Ascot and the Cox Plate went everywhere and nowhere and with good old “Walshy” moving the mare to New South Wales and the stable of Annabel Neasham.

So much for loyalty.

Frankly, other than some extremely good rides by Lucy Fiore- the former Lucy Warwick- the racing product in WA and overall “vibe” has become rather ho hum despite all the talk about quokkas and slots and those from the East coming over to plunder the riches of the big races.

Reminds us of somewhere else close to our hearts that’s still desperately searching for ways- most of them embarrassingly childish- to attract international tourists and investors.

Longtime Hong Kong Belongers, meanwhile, are enjoying flying off and checking out the fun and funky inexpensive luxury of places like the Maldives, Cambodia, Bali, Macau, Indonesia, Malaysia and Sri Lanka, below.

Not everything in life and living revolves around horse racing and what is known as “the punt”.


A new name in the jockey’s roster in Victoria: Alzaro Apablaza Espinoza, a rider from- ole- Chile who’s linked to the stables of Leon and Troy Corstens.

Accompanying Espinoza on his Australian sojourn and an Assistant Trainer with the Corstens is Alejandro Figuera.

Meanwhile, French pinup rider in the globe trotting Mickaelle Michelle who built up quite a big fan base during her stints in Japan is still in Victoria and picking up the odd winner at some of the provincial tracks. But here’s a girl who has determination and talent on her side- and strong management and the racing media. 

Standing in her way other than the usual suspects led by Jamie Kah, Celine Goudray, Rachel King, Alana Kelly, Tatum Bull etc is exciting young talent Jaylah Kennedy, below, who rode a double at Sandown on Saturday and keeps moving up the totem pole.


Though it was a stroll in the park for international superstar Rebel’s Romance to gallop away with the Champions and Chaters Cup at Shatin on Sunday, one must applaud Lyle Hewitson for his intelligent and creative ride aboard outsider Moment In Time.

The horse might have come fourth, but it was a hard fought effort that could have seen the gelding come second.

Still, he finished well ahead of the more highly credentialed Russian Emperor and HK Derby winner Massive Sovereign in the process.


Jerry Chau fan

He’s somewhat of an enigma- received a last minute call up from Adelaide to Hong Kong when fellow apprentice Gary Ho was suddenly not accepted by the Hong Kong Jockey Club and was immediately indentured to the stable of Douglas Whyte.

Jerry Chau and Whyte formed a formidable team and everything was coming up roses before something happened and the Sorcerer and the Apprentice went their separate ways.

For months, Jerry Chau was in the wilderness of Hong Kong racing before slowly building up a working relationship with trainer Benno TP Yung.

Since then, like a Phoenix rising from the ashes, Chau has taken flight and has ridden some brilliant winners.

At Shatin on Sunday, he rode a very good double and has stamped himself as a future champion Hong Kong jockey.






bottom of page