An in-form Chad Schofield is hoping he has jumped on the merry-go-round that is the jockey ranks on Hong Kong’s top sprinters at the right time.
Schofield will ride the John Size-trained Full Of Beauty in the Class One Chek Lap Kok Handicap (1,200m) in a race that boasts some of Hong Kong’s top speedsters.
Six of the seven horses have different jockeys from last start and Schofield will be aboard Full Of Beauty for the first time at Sha Tin on Sunday where he is looking to continue his hot form that has netted him five winners in three meetings.
“All the big horses are all around a similar mark, a lot of the time it comes down to who gets the best run,” he said.
“His trial the other day, although I didn’t ride him, it looked very impressive so he is definitely good enough to win a race like this.”
After missing a month of racing earlier this year through suspension, Schofield has returned with strong support. He has nine rides on Sunday.
“It was tricky with my suspension, it wasn’t just your stock-standard two meetings, it was a big one but I was lucky I got on Circuit Three my first day back, so I got a few winners and got going straight away which was good,” he said.
“Things are going really well … Hong Kong is a place you need to keep your momentum up and keep fresh in people’s minds and keep the results coming, when that is coming, better rides come too.”
Full Of Beauty drops from Group One company along with Hot King Prawn, Mr Stunning and Thanks Forever.
While he could only manage to run sixth under jockey Zac Purton in January’s Centenary Sprint Cup, Schofield thought the run had merit.
“I thought he probably had a bit of an excuse mid-race last start,” he said. “I think he is a horse that probably likes to come at them, perhaps he was too close last time.
“Zac had to use him up to keep Hot King Prawn in, he was a bit plain in the finish.
“We know when he is ridden to come at them, he can produce a big finish. Hopefully he can get the right run and produce his best.”
Size will also be represented in the race by Hot King Prawn (Joao Moreira) and Country Star (Alfred Chan Ka-hei), who will carry just 108 pounds thanks to the apprentice’s claim.
Meanwhile, Purton is looking to lock in a trip to Dubai on Thanks Forever later this month.
The John Moore-trained sprinter has been invited to race in the Group One Al Quoz Sprint (1,200m) but will need to perform strongly on Sunday to convince connections to travel.
“He’s certainly gone to another level, there’s been no fluke about the way he’s been running,” Purton said.
“He’s drawn gate four, so if he shows some speed he can get in the right spot and hopefully he runs well into a possible race in Dubai – there’s no reason why he’s not going to.”