Lucky Sweynesse might be given the chance to extend a phenomenal season in search of a ninth victory after matching Beauty Generation’s record for the most wins in a single Hong Kong campaign with a dominant performance in the Gr.3 Sha Tin Vase Handicap (1200m) at Sha Tin on Sunday.
The New Zealand bred posted his eighth win from 10 starts this season, and his sixth in a row, Lucky Sweynesse powered to a comfortable one-and-a-quarter length victory over Victor The Winner despite conceding the runner-up 9kgs, while clocking 1m 08.00s under Zac Purton.
Improving a stunning career record to 13 wins, two seconds and a third from 17 starts for Manfred Man, the prodigious four-year-old son of Sweynesse took his prize money earnings to HK$51,108,200 – and still might be given one more opportunity to snap the record for the most wins in a season the gelding now shares with Beauty Generation, another Kiwi bred who won all of his eight starts in 2018/19.
Man suggested Lucky Sweynesse – the world’s highest-rated sprinter – might attempt to add the Gr.3 Premier Cup Handicap (1400m) at Sha Tin on 25 June to a bulging list of 2022/23 credits, which already include Group One triumphs in the Centenary Sprint Cup (1200m), Queen’s Silver Jubilee Cup (1400m) and Chairman’s Sprint Prize (1200m).
“I need to discuss with the owner first, it’s too early to give an answer. I will look at the horse after the race. We will do the morning gallop to see how he feels. Now the weather is very hot, so I don’t want the horse to feel hot,” Man said of possible Premier Cup plans.
“He is in really good form and I think maybe next season he can still improve a little bit.”
Purton said the solid tempo set by Victor The Winner and Sight Success played into Lucky Sweynesse’s hands as the favourite tracked the speed in third place until the home straight before angling out to settle the matter with a terminal charge inside the last 200m.
“Once he jumped as well he did, it made it easier and then with the extra pace in the race and with the weight on his back, it just allowed him to get into a nice rhythm and to come into the race when he was ready,” Purton said.
“I looked after him for as long as I could and he did the rest. He’s turning into some horse. It was a pretty soft win. He’s something else, he’s starting to turn into a very, very good horse.”
Five-time Hong Kong Champion Jockey Purton said he is surprised by Lucky Sweynesse’s continued progress which has seen the strongly-built speedster advance from a rating of 98 to 130 before today’s race.
“The last three or four months, he’s improved so much it’s scary to think that with a break he might build up even more – I’m hoping that’s the case,” Purton said.
Bred by Luigi Muollo, along with Allan Sharrock and Paul Dombroski, Lucky Sweynesse is the pin-up galloper for Novara Park Stud stallion Sweynesse.
A Group One performed son of Lonhro, Sweynesse is also the sire of Group winners Special Swey, Only Words, Dragon Queen and Bonita Aurelia, while he is making his mark in Hong Kong with six winners from nine runners, including Solid Impact, who was Group Three placed in New Zealand prior to export.
Lucky Sweynesse is out of the Listed Wanganui Cup (2040m) winner Madonna Mia, a versatile mare that won nine races and has now gone on with the job as a broodmare.
Her first mating with Sweynesse resulted in the highly talented multiple stakes performer Signora Nera, who was placed in the Gr.1 Queensland Oaks (2200m).
Lucky Sweynesse was sold at the New Zealand Bloodstock Ready To Run Sale out of Woburn Farm’s 2020 draft for $90,000 to Joe Barnes’ J & I Bloodstock.
The gelding was a six length trial winner at Ellerlsie out of Shelley Hale’s Cambridge stable before transferring to Hong Kong.