Whyte’s young guns firing, Latest Racing News - The New Paper

Whyte’s young guns firing

Champion jockey-turned-trainer is feeling good his newbies performing well

Douglas Whyte is fast developing a reputation as a trainer well capable of readying young prospects for early success.

The South African has 56 horses in his stable, 27 of whom were unraced in Hong Kong before Saturday's pre-Christmas Sha Tin meeting.

Following on the heels of Will Power's first-up win the previoud week, the rookie handler delivered Inner Flame and Xponential for step-out victories.

"It's ticking over nicely," said Whyte. "I've indicated for a while now that it was going to be exciting when my new ones step out and they're all running races that I would have expected them to have.

"If a couple of them hadn't run like they have, I'd be disappointed because they are showing me pretty good work in the mornings."

Inner Flame, race favourite at odds of 2.2, set the ball rolling in section two of the Class 4 Ho Sheung Heung Handicap over 1,200m.

"It gives you a good feeling when they win like that, the work that you put in it pays off," said Whyte, after the four-year-old's two-length success.

Whyte, a legend of the Hong Kong jockeys' room with 13 championships to his name, was not surprised to see the Zoustar chestnut land the spoils under Alexis Badel.

"He's shown me at home that he's got the ability to produce an effort like he did," said Whyte.

"He's had some really good educational trials and the writing was on the wall for everybody to see."

Xponential repeated his stablemate's first-up feat with a late-lunging win in section one of the Class 4 Ho Sheung Heung Handicap over 1,200m.

Jockey Chad Schofield's mount pipped topweight Fantasy by a head at odds of 47 to 1.

"We didn't expect him to finish the way he did, but he's done everything right in the mornings and he's certainly improved the most of my young ones," said Whyte. - HKJC