Teetan on the treble at Sha Tin
It was a night for late-closers and Mongolian King maintained that trend to the last with a powerful charge in the final race at Sha Tin on Wednesday that sealed a worthy treble for jockey Karis Teetan.
With Joao Moreira and Zac Purton perennially locked into the top two spots in the Hong Kong premiership, Teetan has made third place his own in the past two seasons.
But the Mauritian has a fight on his hands to hold that position for a third term with Vincent Ho breathing down his neck and Grant van Niekerk threatening to join the fray.
Teetan helped his cause, taking his tally to 53, seven ahead of Ho, who picked up one win on the eight-race card. Van Niekerk, who drew a blank, is on 37 wins.
Teetan said it was nice to be third behind those two top jockeys, Moreira and Purton.
"It's not easy to get close to them and I still have a lot to learn. But, with the rides I'm getting, I'm trying to get as many winners as I can," he added.
"Vincent has been doing very well this season. He keeps creeping closer but the treble today should help me. I just want to keep the ball rolling now and keep it going for a good few months."
Derek Leung, aboard Kings Shield, looked to have the Class 2 Cheung Sha Handicap over 1,650m in his hand as he led the 14 runners into the straight and kicked a couple of lengths clear.
But Teetan was already starting to roll on Mongolian King.
The Me Tsui-trained seven-year-old reduced the deficit through a powerful run that pegged the weakening leader inside the final 50m.
The winning margin was 11/4 lengths and the winner's time was 1min 37.91sec.
"The pace was on, so everything was set up for him to have a good run. He was very comfortable on the inside and, as soon as we hit the 600m point, he started travelling nicely into it and he won well," said Teetan.
Earlier on the all- dirt race programme, Goldie Flanker flashed home hard and true to seal Teetan's second win in section one of the Class 4 Kiu Tsui Handicap over 1,200m.
He opened the night by urging General Trump to a grinding win in the Class 5 Silvermine Bay Handicap over 1,200m. - HKJC