Hong Kong racing fans are all enthused about Pakistan Star — for good reason.
The three-year-old bolted from behind to snatch the July 1 Jockey Club griffin race pulling away in Sha Tin Race Course.
The chestnut colt struggled out of the gate but steadily built up momentum under Matthew Chadwick to win its maiden race by three lengths, Apple Daily reports.
The victory was reminiscent of champion race horse River Verdon, which claimed its first win in a similar fashion in September 1990.
River Verdon went on to notch 15 wins to become one of the greatest racing champions.
Chadwick said he was not worried about Pakistan Star’s slow start.
“We knew from training that it’s capable of producing a great run in the final stretch,” he said.
“I felt the win was in hand at the final 300 meters,” he said, adding Pakistan Star can be dominant over 1,600 meters.
Pakistan Star set three new Sha Tin records on its way to a spectacular finish, including the fastest final 400 meters and the fastest clip over 1,200 meters since the Jockey Club introduced sectional times in May 2008.
It also became the first German-bred horse to win a debut race and the first winner starting from barrier 14 in a 1,200-meter race in Shatin’s A+3 course.
German-bred Pakistan Star was bought for HK$6 million at an international sale in March.
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