Medaglia d’Oro Gelding Golden Sixty Extends Hong Kong Win Streak To 13

Golden Sixty extended his unbeaten run to 13 straight wins with victory in Sunday’s Group 1 Citi Hong Kong Gold Cup at Sha Tin.

However, Hong Kong’s highest rated horse was forced to spare no effort as he scrambled to add a third consecutive Group 1 to his glittering record which now stands at 16 wins from 17 starts, four shy of Silent Witness’ record 17 consecutive wins. 

Dropped out to his customary position at the rear of the field, the Medaglia d’Oro gelding began his surge in the straight but the challenge from Furore on the inside required jockey Vincent Ho to call on everything that Golden Sixty could give and, it proved just enough as he prevailed by a short head, the smallest margin of any of his wins.

“I was quite confident that I would stay ahead of them but we fought hard – it wasn’t easy, it was a bit unexpected to be that close. I was just worried about the horse to the inside of him because Golden Sixty laid in a bit, he would have won easier if he didn’t do that,” Ho said. 

 “Once he went past Exultant he wanted to lay in – it made it difficult for me but it’s still a victory,” the 30-year-old added.

Sunday’s win was both a first in the Gold Cup for trainer Francis Lui and jockey Vincent Ho.

“I think you can’t really change the horse’s character – when he passed the third horse (Exultant), Golden Sixty thinks he has finished the job, but there’s another horse on the inside,” Lui said.

Now rated 131, Golden Sixty is only two wins shy of Beauty Generation’s single-season record of eight and, he has the first two legs of Hong Kong’s Triple Crown in the bag after claiming last month’s G1 Stewards’ Cup.

“I will think about the third leg of the Triple Crown, we also have a race in April in mind,” Lui said referencing FWD Champions Day.

The third and final leg of the Triple Crown is the G1 Standard Chartered Champions & Chater Cup on 23 May and, if successful stepping up to 12 furlongs in three months’ time, he could become the second horse after River Verdon in the 1993/94 racing season to win the Triple Crown. 

Horse of the Year Exultant battled into third place under Zac Purton, while Glorious Dragon sealed fourth under Matthew Poon behind him, the second of the Lui-trained runners.

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