12/05/2007 12:00AM

Dylan Thomas gets green light for Vase

EmailDylan Thomas has been declared drug free by the Hong Kong Jockey Club, giving the six-time Group 1 winner the go-ahead to run in the Hong Kong Vase at Sha Tin on Sunday.

Traces of equine viral arteritis that had lingered in his system after a vaccination intended to prepare the 4-year-old Dylan Thomas for breeding purposes have vanished, so he is free to face 13 rivals in the 1 1/2-mile Vase. Among them will be Red Rocks, third and first in the last two runnings of the Breeders' Cup Turf; Man o' War winner Doctor Dino; and Canadian International runner-up Quijano.

Meanwhile, Vengeance of Rain will bypass a clash with Dylan Thomas and instead go head-to-head with local rival Viva Pataca in Sunday's feature race, the 1 1/4-mile Hong Kong Cup. The $2.8 million Group 1 race could draw as few as seven runners, among them Godolphin's ace miler Ramonti, who will be trying 10 furlongs for the first time.

Australian raider Miss Andretti got the last two furlongs of a four-furlong work at Sha Tin on Tuesday in a glittering 21.5 seconds in preparation for her highly anticipated Hong Kong Sprint meeting with Absolute Champion, Benbaun, and Sacred Kingdom, while BC Mile runner-up Excellent Art and three-time French Group 1 winner Darjina will duke it out in the Hong Kong Mile.

Hong Kong rider wins competition

Hong Kong's seven-time champion rider Doug Whyte landed honors in the Cathay Pacific International Jockeys Championship at Happy Valley on Wednesday night, winning the first leg of the three-race competition aboard Champion Lad, then finishing third and fifth in the next two legs to defeat the French-based Belgian rider Christophe Soumillon by a score of 18-15. Soumillon won the second leg on Super Surprise, beating Vincere, the mount of Canadian Emma-Jayne Wilson, by three-quarters of a length. Aussie Damien Oliver took the final race of the contest aboard Dr Possi.

Wilson, whose other mounts finished sixth and seventh, placed sixth overall in the 12-rider competition. Representing the United States, Richard Migliore had no luck at all as his mounts came home 9th, 10th, and 11th. He finished tied for last in 10th place with Olivier Peslier and Ryan Moore.