Francis Lui weighs up future of Hong Kong Derby hero Golden Sixty



The future of Derby winner Golden Sixty will be decided in the next week with trainer Francis Lui Kin-wai weighing up a tilt at the Group One Champions Mile later this month.


Lui is still making his mind up on what to do with his star galloper after a brilliant clean sweep of the four-year-old series which culminated in a thrilling last-gasp victory in Hong Kong’s most prestigious race.


With seven wins from seven starts this season already under his belt, Lui is tossing up whether to give Golden Sixty a well-earned break or go back to the well one more time.

“We will make a decision next week for Golden Sixty,” he said. “He has pulled up well from the Derby, he galloped [on Thursday] and seemed OK.”


With a dearth of options available for the 112-rater, Lui said he was leaning towards giving Golden Sixty the opportunity to run in the Champions Mile, given it is highly unlikely any international horses will be able to compete so there won’t be a big field.


Golden Sixty is rated a $6 chance by overseas fixed-odds bookmakers.


“I would say there is a good chance he runs because there is nothing else for the rest of the season otherwise, his rating is too high now,” Lui said.


Most Champions Mile hopefuls will race at Sha Tin on Sunday with the likes of Beauty Generation and Waikuku returning after their respective Group One victories.


With limited depth at the top level, Golden Sixty would likely be on the third line of betting in the race behind the two stars should Lui opt to run.


While Lui remains uncertain about Golden Sixty, he confirmed More Than This is poised to run in the Group One QE II Cup (2,000m) on the same day.


Coming off his third placing in the Derby last month, Lui said More Than This had pulled up well and he was keen to continue racing the stayer.


While Golden Sixty was stretched to his limit with the 2,000m trip, More Than This appears to want even more ground with time.


“More Than This would go to the QE II and Golden Sixty to the Champions Mile, that way we can keep them separate,” Lui said.


More Than This is rated a $12 chance by fixed-odds bookmakers in a market that still includes a host of overseas entries.

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