Racing

Excellent Proposal for 4YO Series

John Size-trained rising star has won over the first two legs' distances

Hong Kong's rising star Excellent Proposal made a big statement with an impressive win in the Class 2 Chek Lap Kok Handicap over 1,800m at Sha Tin on Sunday.

The exciting John Size-trained gelding beat a classy field of experienced gallopers to cement his status as a leading contender for this season's three-race Four-Year-Old Classic Series, which begins with the HK$12 million (S$2.1 million) Hong Kong Classic Mile on Jan 24.

"He didn't sort of blow them away today, but he certainly did the job," Size said. "He's got himself to a rating that's comfortable to be an aspirant of the Four-Year-Old Classic Series, so I'm happy with that.

"His temperament is good. He's sound, he does well and, now that he's got that rating, he can have a break."

Excellent Proposal took his impressive record to three wins from four starts with his half-length victory over Tianchi Monster with 123lb (55.9kg).

He has now ticked off both the Classic Mile (1,600m) and Classic Cup (1,800m) trips.

While the Derby distance of 2,000m remains an unknown, it is of no concern to winning jockey Joao Moreira.

"I don't see any problem with that," said the Brazilian.

"He's been coping with everything that we have put to him. Fortunately, today we weren't caught four-deep like last time. But he prevailed, showing that he's the best horse in the field and the way that he won he proved that."

The Australian-bred four-year-old finished second on debut last term. This season, he is unbeaten in three starts, firstly over 1,400m, then 1,600m and 1,800m on Sunday.

"He's a very kind and relaxed horse. I couldn't be more delighted than what I am with this guy. He's got a bright future," added Moreira. - HKJC

HORSE RACING