07/14/2017 6:21PM

Hong Kong: Rapper Dragon named horse of the year

Hong Kong Jockey Club
The late Rapper Dragon, the first horse to sweep Hong Kong’s Triple Crown for 4-year-olds, was recognized as Hong Kong Horse of the Year.

The late Rapper Dragon was recognized as the Horse of the Year in Hong Kong for the 2016-17 season in a ceremony on Friday night.

Rapper Dragon became the first horse to sweep Hong Kong’s Triple Crown for 4-year-olds run from January to March, known as the Classic Series.

Rapper Dragon won 4 of 6 starts before suffering a fatal injury in the Group 1 Champions Mile in April. In the Classic Series, Rapper Dragon won the Hong Kong Classic Mile in January, Hong Kong Classic Cup at 1 1/8 miles in February, and the BMW Hong Kong Derby at 1 1/4 miles in March.

A 4-year-old Australian-bred gelding, Rapper Dragon won the Group 2 Champions Trophy in April.

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The Hong Kong season began in September and ends on Sunday at Sha Tin, although that program does not have any group-level stakes.

Rapper Dragon, who raced for Albert Hung and trainer John Moore, was named champion middle-distance horse. He was recognized as a fan favorite, winning the most popular horse award through a public vote.

In other divisions, Beauty Only was named champion miler in a season highlighted by a win in the Hong Kong Mile in December at Sha Tin. Aerovelocity was named champion sprinter, a title he won in 2014-15. Aerovelocity, who has been retired, won the Group 1 Hong Kong Sprint at Sha Tin in December.

Werther, the 2015-16 Horse of the Year, was honored as champion stayer for his win in the Group 1 Standard Chartered Champions and Chater Cup at 1 1/2 miles on turf in May.

The 3-year-old Premiere was honored as champion griffin, or newcomer to racing.

John Size won his ninth training title, while Joao Moreira was honored as champion jockey for the third consecutive year.