Racing

Moreira achieves quickest century

Champion jockey Joao Moreira brought up his 100th win for the season at just the 441st race of the 2016/17 term, taking out the Class 4 Rotary Centenary Challenge Cup Handicap over 1,200m on the Tony Cruz-trained PAKISTAN BABY.

This set a new record for the quickest century of wins in a Hong Kong racing season, with Moreira usurping his own mark, set last season, of 100 victories in 462 races - and the jockey admitted it had been on his mind throughout the night.

"It does feel like 100," he said, with a laugh.

"Because too many people are talking about it and I knew that I was pretty close. My book of rides was pretty good, so I was confident I could make it today. It is a pleasure to win for Tony Cruz, too, he's supported me here and there, and we've been quite lucky together and it's been proved once again today."

Before the Brazilian jockey arrived on the scene, only two riders had ever reached the 100-win benchmark in a season: Douglas Whyte achieved the feat six times during his 13 consecutive championships, hitting a record high of 114, while Purton made it to 112 when he won the title in 2013/14.

However, Moreira became the quickest centurion in just his second season in Hong Kong in 2014/15 and has topped the mark at each of the last two years. Last season, that record pace saw him reach 168 wins at the end of the term.

Only on Feb 5, Moreira recorded his 500th success in Hong Kong after relocating from Singapore in October 2013. - HKJC