Gold-Fun back on track for Premier Bowl after nice trial effort

An improved trial outing from Gold-Fun at Sha Tin yesterday raised hopes that Richard Gibson’s star will be there when the big guns roll out two weeks from now in the Group Two Premier Bowl.

Gold-Fun’s first trial after off-season surgery on a damaged left front fetlock had raised a few eyebrows as the multiple Group One winner put in an unconvincing effort on the dirt in late September.

Yesterday, the first sign that Gold-Fun was closer to full fitness was that Douglas Whyte was back in the saddle, bumping Richard Fourie, and the second was the performance in the 1,000m trial itself, as the chestnut got through his work without any hassles.

Gold-Fun went to the line under a hold in fourth – after sitting in behind the speed Whyte went to look for daylight only to find rival Zac Purton closing the gap aboard 85-rated Harrier Jet. Still, there was no harm for Gold-Fun to be finding the line with plenty in the tank, as much as Whyte might have wanted to blow the cobwebs out over the final stages.

Gibson pulled off one of the training efforts of the 2014-15 season when he reinvented Gold-Fun as a sprinter, even if the move was prompted by his horse seeing the considerable hindquarters of Able Friend over four straight starts at a mile. Interestingly, Gold-Fun is likely to clash with his nemesis if he lines up in the Premier Bowl, with John Moore suggesting he will start Able Friend’s campaign over 1,200m in the same race as he did last season.

Whether it be the Premier Bowl or a month later in the Jockey Club Sprint, the emphasis is likely to be on Gibson’s six-year-old being fresh rather than looking for peak fitness right away as he looks towards December’s Hong Kong Sprint.



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