03/13/2018 1:01PM

Hong Kong: Change of scenery could do Circuit Glory good


Circuit Glory is going across town and down in class seeking his first win in Hong Kong.

The 4-year-old New Zealand-bred gelding has made all five of his starts in Class 2 handicaps at Sha Tin Racecourse. Wednesday, he is among 12 entrants in the featured $167,104 Arsenal Handicap, a Class 3 at Happy Valley Racecourse.

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Circuit Glory breaks from post 9 under Tommy Berry in the Arsenal, the last of eight races Wednesday night with a post time of 10:50 a.m. Eastern. Trained by John Moore, Circuit Glory has raced around one turn in his Sha Tin starts but goes one circuit around the irregularly shaped Happy Valley course this time. Moore, speaking to Hong Kong Jockey Club publicity, called Circuit Glory “a work in progress,” a classification that seems apt watching his most recent start, a third behind the talented Ping Hai Star.

Circuit Glory was taken in back to fifth in that start – and resented it. He got his head up and pulled too hard on his rider’s reins, and such early overexertions take their toll late in the game. Moore said the plan Wednesday night is to get Circuit Glory back and find cover before the first turn, try to get him switched off, and come with one late run. Rated 81, second-highest in a race for horses rated between 60 and 85, Circuit Glory is burdened with 131 pounds, two fewer than top-rated Literateur.

Literateur has rounded nicely into form for trainer Richard Gibson after a slow start to his campaign. His form pattern this Hong Kong season looks similar to last season’s, and Literateur strung together consecutive course and distance wins in Class 3's about 10 months ago.

Lucky Girl could have a serious chance. The 6-year-old gelding led and faded in two recent Sha Tin starts over longer trips, but employed stretch-running tactics rallying from 12th to finish second Oct. 25 in a race just like Wednesday’s, following up three weeks later with a Class 2 course and distance win.

First post for the Wednesday card is 7:15 a.m. Eastern. The Happy Valley course was rated good as of Tuesday but had some cut in the ground.