Racing

1,700 winners with Moore on the way

Hong Kong veteran trainer's latest ambition is to win Group 1 races, including in Dubai

Hong Kong's most successful trainer John Moore has added a new milestone to his career.

He notched his 1,700th Hong Kong win when Savvy Seven broke through for his first in the Class 5 Wang Tau Hom Handicap over 1,800m on Saturday.

"1,700 wins - that's a very important milestone in my life and also in Hong Kong," said Moore.

"But, getting back to the horse that did it, the enigma - Savvy Seven! He's been trying so many times to finally win a race."

Moore has been a record-breaking trailblazer in Hong Kong since gaining his licence in 1985.

He is Hong Kong's longest-serving and successful trainer, netting an all-time record prize money haul of HK$2.03 billion ($358 million) since taking over from his legendary father George Moore.

"It'll go down in folklore," he said. I was lucky enough to start training at 35 years of age ,which is where I had the big advantage."

The seven-time champion trainer's lengthy honour roll of winners includes the last six Horse of the Year winners.

He also achieved a hatful of Group 1 wins, including four overseas, notably Sterling City's victory in the Group 1 Dubai Golden Shaheen over 1,200m on dirt.

But it was in lowly Class 5 on Saturday that the Australian handler hit his latest milestone.

Savvy Seven, a 22-start maiden, got home by a neck under Frenchman Alexis Badel.

"To do it with a Class 5 winner, especially the enigmatic Savvy Seven - it's amazing. He could never win a race, and I got totally fed up with all the expectations around (him).

"But then, he goes and does it today to put my 1,700th win on the board," he said.

"I'll have to go back and give the horse a big kiss and bucket full of carrots."

Moore outlined his ambitions for the second half of the Hong Kong racing season, which includes a hoped-for second big race win at Meydan.

"To win Group 1s and, hopefully, go to Dubai and win a Group 1 there," he said.

The 69-year old has three horses entered for the Dubai World Cup meeting next month. His big hopes are reigning Horse of the Year Beauty Generation in the Group 1 Dubai Turf over 1,800m and Sha Tin 1,000m track-record holder Aethero in the Group 1 Al Quoz Sprint over 1,200m. - HKJC

HORSE RACING