Racing

Purton lands a five-bagger in HK

WINNER'S WAY helped jockey Zac Purton to a five-timer and earned a shot at one of two upcoming Group 3 prizes with a front-running win in the Class 1 Macwhinnie Cup Handicap over 1,400m on a rainy Saturday at Sha Tin.

Winner's Way's triumph was his fourth from nine Hong Kong starts and followed an impressive make-all score at Happy Valley a month ago.

"He'll have one more run this season, I think - there are a couple of Group 3 races, one at a mile and one at 1,400m,) so we'll look at one of those," said trainer Tony Cruz said, referencing the 4 June Lion Rock Trophy Handicap (1,600m) and the Premier Cup Handicap (1,400m) three weeks later.

Winner's Way's win sealed an early hat-trick for Purton, who was untouchable in the afternoon's first three contests. The former champion jockey opened with a straightforward score on the much-hyped two-year-old HOT KING PRAWN in Race 1 and followed-up aboard the David Hall-trained HARD BALL GET in Race 2.

In Race 7, the Australian drove the Benno Yung-trained LUCKY DOLLAR to a-length-and three-quarter success in Race 7 and then scored an all-the-way win on the Cruz-trained KING GENKI in Race 8, which sealed a first Purton quintet since Oct 26, 2014. The rider also drove home three close seconds. - HKJC