Raging Blizzard gives Size his 1,500th win in HK
HONG KONG - John Size added another remarkable layer to an extraordinary career when the 12-time champion trainer saddled his 1,500th Hong Kong winner at Sha Tin on Nov 19.
He became only the second trainer, after fellow Australian John Moore, to achieve the feat.
Marking his entry into one of Hong Kong racing’s most exclusive clubs with a quartet, the 69-year-old reached the 1,500-win mark when Raging Blizzard won the Class 4 BOC Life Handicap (1,200m) under six-time Hong Kong champion jockey Zac Purton.
One of the most influential figures in Hong Kong racing’s long and decorated history, Size was humbled to reach the colossal figure to sit behind only Moore (1,735 wins), before crowning his achievement with the subsequent successes of Beauty Eternal, Helios Express and Ensued.
“I’m very satisfied with my career in Hong Kong. It’s been very good from the first season when I started here and it’s given me great satisfaction,” he said, expressing surprise that he had reached such an imposing milestone with his 10,912th starter in Hong Kong.
“No, I didn’t imagine that (reaching 1,500 winners). I thought it was a very tough assignment for me to come here.
“But, right from the beginning, it seems like I was well suited and I’ve done much better than I could have imagined.”
With 16 Group 1 victories and three BMW Hong Kong Derby triumphs to his credit, Size has been synonymous with some of the jurisdiction’s smartest horses while reaching the landmark with a winning strike rate of 13.7 per cent.
First licensed for the 2001-02 season, he swept to the Hong Kong trainers’ championship and repeated the feat in 2002-03, 2003-04, 2005-06, 2007-08, 2009-10, 2011-12, 2015-16, 2016-17, 2017-18, 2018-19 and 2022-23 – to stand alone as the owner of the most training crowns.
“I’ll leave someone out if I start mentioning names, but Electronic Unicorn started the procession,” Size said.
“He was a fantastic horse to come to me in my first season and gave me a great start and a big kick along.
“The three (Hong Kong) Derby horses, of course – Fay Fay (2012), Luger (2015) and Ping Hai Star (2018) – and Beat The Clock, who won four Group 1s in 12 months. It’s been a great ride and I’ve enjoyed every minute of it.
“I’m very satisfied and I’m very grateful that I was able to come here.” HKJC