04/24/2017 1:02PM

Hong Kong: Sea Jade tries to put bleeding incident behind

Hong Kong Jockey Club
Sea Jade (inside) and Blocker Dee dead heat at Happy Valley on Feb. 15.

The quick gelding Sea Jade seemed to run an inexplicably poor race when 12th in a turf sprint at Happy Valley Racecourse in Hong Kong on March 15, until a post-race exam determined that the 3-year-old bled.

The diagnosis makes the loss easier to comprehend and puts the focus on Sea Jade in his return to racing in Wednesday’s $224,950 Seoul Handicap at six furlongs on turf at Happy Valley.

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Sea Jade has won half of his 10 starts this year and has soared on the circuit’s official rankings, from 51 at the start of the year to a rating of 95. Three horses share top rating of 128 in Hong Kong as of Monday. The Seoul Handicap is restricted to horses rated 80 to 100.

Sea Jade, who will be ridden by Sam Clipperton, is part of a field of 12 and shares top weight of 132 pounds with Jetwings. Sea Jade is quick and won twice at Happy Valley, in January and February, by leading throughout.

Jetwings won the March 15 race in which Sea Jade faded. Jetwings has started twice during the Hong Kong season. He was sidelined for more than 14 months before returning in January. A 5-year-old gelding, Jetwings is a closer.

General Iron, who will carry 121 pounds, has had a similar interruption in his career. General Iron is having his second start on Wednesday after a 12-month break. General Iron was sixth in a minor handicap on turf at Sha Tin on April 9 in his comeback.

The Seoul Handicap is the Hong Kong debut of The Golden Age, a French-bred colt who won the Group 3 Prix La Rochette at Saint-Cloud last September when racing under the name Kontrastat. Horses frequently have their names changed when sent to Hong Kong.

The Golden Age has not raced since finishing fourth in the Group 1 Prix Jean Luc-Lagardere at Chantilly, France, last October. He was exported to Hong Kong later that month, according to French racing records.