Jimmy Ting secures his 100th win as Exultant bids farewell


Jimmy Ting Koon-ho notched the 100th victory of his fledgling training career as Lucky Victor captured the Class Five Tung Wan Shan Handicap (1,650m).

The 48-year-old was only granted a licence at the start of the 2018-19 season and has been ticking along nicely, securing 48 winners in his opening campaign before following it up with 35 victories and 27 so far this season.

While content with how things are travelling, Ting still feels there is plenty of room for improvement.


“It’s a nice number to get to but hopefully there are a lot more to come. This is only just the beginning,” he told the Post.

“At this stage it’s been OK, but I think I can still improve. I’m still learning so I’m sure I will keep getting better.”

Like his trainer, there might be better things to come for Lucky Victor, who saved his career with a strong performance.


All horses rated 25 or less face compulsory retirement at the end of the season but the four-year-old should be safe now with his rating of 19 likely to exceed that threshold thanks to the win.

It took Lucky Victor 14 starts to land his first win but Ting hopes he can go on with it now after acclimatising to life in Hong Kong.

“He is a bit of a late maturer. I hope next season he can improve a little bit more. We can only hope,” Ting said.


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“At trackwork in the morning he’s not a Class Five horse but it is totally different when he gets into a race. He is starting to pick it up now and hopefully he can progress to Class Four in time.”

It was also an important result for jockey Keith Yeung Ming-lun, who notched just his third win of 2021.

The 33-year-old went straight to the front from barrier three and that proved the winning move on the wet dirt surface.


“Last time you needed to come from behind on the all-weather track but because it was the first race I didn’t know if he would be better coming from behind or being in front,” Ting said.

“I asked him to sit second or third but the horse was too fast. He made a good decision to let the horse go.”

Exultant feted at farewell ceremony

Reigning Hong Kong Horse of the Year Exultant has graced the Sha Tin parade ring for the final time, parading around before the opening race on Saturday for his farewell ceremony.


Only the very best are given these occasions and there is no doubt the five-time Group One winner belongs in the elite category.

Exultant will be best remembered for his gutsy win in the 2018 Hong Kong Vase when he beat a crack field including Lys Gracieux, Waldgeist, Pakistan Star and Prince Of Arran.

Trainer Tony Cruz thinks that is the stand-out moment.


“I will remember him for winning the Hong Kong Vase in 2018. On that particular day all four of the international Group Ones were won by Hong Kong-trained horses,” he said. “It was great to see.”

Owned by couple Eddie Wong Ming-chak and Wong Leung Sau-hing, Exultant finishes his career with HK$83,491,900 in prize money – second all-time in Hong Kong, behind only Beauty Generation.

“To me, it’s just an overwhelming sense of pride,” their son Kirk Wong King-wai said. “We’re grateful for the journey.”


Jockey Zac Purton was aboard for 25 of Exultant’s 32 starts – and all of his wins.

“He means a lot to me, I was able to ride him over a number of seasons from the Derby all the way through to when he retired. Never once did he let me down,” Purton said.

“He was always courageous, he always gave everything he had. Tony and his team need to be commended for the way he was able to produce the horse start after start the way he did. The ride I was able to go on with the wonderful Wong family as well, every piece of the puzzle came together. I’m certainly going to miss him.”


Exultant will now head back to Ireland, where he will enjoy his retirement.

Single Man comes out on top

Australian import Ima Single Man broke his Hong Kong maiden in good fashion, running over the top of When You Believe and Drops Of God to claim the Class Three Mount Cameron Handicap (1,200m).

The son of Gingerbread Man won the Group Two Karrakatta Plate in Perth before making the move to Hong Kong and he’s taken a little bit of time to adjust to his new environment.


But the ability is certainly there and the Tony Cruz-trained three-year-old showed what he is capable of.

“It was a good win, he still does a lot wrong,” jockey Neil Callan said. “He’s still learning. I think he’s still a work in progress, he’s still got improvement in him mentally.

“He should be able to go on from this season – if his mind switches on, he might be better. You’ll just have to take him race by race, but he’s got more in him.”


Triple Trio jackpots again

Just three weeks after the Triple Trio paid out a monster HK$106 million, another big pool is building after failing to go off at each of the past three weekend meetings.

There will be a jackpot of HK$13,424,574 for Thursday’s Establishment Day card after a seemingly gettable set of results went by the wayside.

Super Fast ($2.3 favourite), El Valiente ($11) and Dragon Commander ($7.1) finished top three in the first leg before Superbella ($7.6), Entrusted ($6.8) and Blastoise ($18) got the job done in the middle pin.


Favourite Victory Scholars ($3.9) edged out Brilliant China ($5.5) and Pure Legend ($9.7) in the final leg but incredibly no one managed to have that combination of numbers in their tickets.

There are sure to be more players on Thursday with a HK$10 dividend likely to pay something just shy of HK$30 million.



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