Jockey Aldo Domeyer has made a rapid advance since arriving in Hong Kong at the start of May and he annexed his first Hong Kong treble when the promising Not Usual Talent took the finale at Happy Valley on Wednesday night.
“I thought I had a pretty fair card and could go well but I didn’t expect it would go as well as it did. From five rides I had three winners and two places, so it all went accordingly,” the South African rider said.
“I thought I’d take my chances the way the going was today: horses with bad draws, just sit them in, and horses with good draws, just hold my position. Things worked out quite nicely, I just timed my runs and here we are!” he said after Not Usual Talent had capped earlier wins on Showing Character and Sparkling Dragon.
Domeyer’s victory on Not Usual Talent came in the night’s quality contest, the Class 2 Hoi Ha Handicap (1650m). The Benno Yung-trained four-year-old took his Hong Kong record to three wins from 10 starts with a deep-closing half-length verdict over Mr So And So.
“He went up nine pounds for his win last time but I still thought it was a handy galloping weight because he was quite fluent in his last win. He’s a big horse so I thought he’d carry the weight, especially on this going, which I thought he’d enjoy more than any other horse,” he said.
“He was a bit clumsy amongst horses but once I gave him daylight he was fluent, he actually quickened for a big horse, which is quite nice. When they’re relaxed like that and quicken with such a long stride, I think they’ve always got a chance. Something about him makes me think he’ll be better next season.”
Not Usual Talent, a son of Zacinto, was pinhooked as a yearling by Ascot Farm from Park Hill Stables' 2016 New Zealand Bloodstock South Island draft. He was then purchased out of their Ready To Run draft for $34,000.
Domeyer was also successful on Sparkling Dragon in the Class 3 Lai Chi Chong Handicap (1200m). Domeyer delivered the charging O'Reilly gelding late to give Millard his first win since 5 May.
“The horse has unfortunately lost his early speed but you’ve got to hand it to Aldo today, he didn't panic – he waited and then he came,” Millard said.
“He’s settling in nicely and he’s getting a nice spread of rides, not just from me, he’s getting a lot of support. He’s very strong, he’s in that same mould as Felix Coetzee – they are tough and they are strong.” -HKJC