Irish-bred ISG enters the classic discussions
Trainer Danny Shum celebrated the 700th winne rof his career in style at Happy Valley midweek, when Romantic Warrior put up an even more impressive performance than his debut win.
But this was also Shum firing a shot over the bow of the other classic hopefuls as Romantic Warrior, at just his second start, posted a Winning Factor rating of 91 - enough to put him into the mix for the Classic Mile in January.
A product of the HKJC International Sale, where he brought $HK 4.3 million, Romantic Warrior again showed real quality in his acceleration to put the race to bed very quickly in the straight despite top weight of 133 pounds. He was also again treated kindly by the HKJC handicapper and should justify a very short price next time in Class 3 to take himself closer to qualifying for the Classic Mile.
Although the Irish-bred Romantic Warrior has only been tried at 1200m so far - and is by Acclamation, largely a sprint sire - there is some promise of him getting a mile.
His granddam, Folk Opera was a winner up to 2400m and a G1 winner of the EP Taylor Stakes at Woodbine over 2000m. He also races like a horse who is not purely a short course galloper, switching off then sprinting hard, a good recipe for him to run further than 1200m.
The cut off rating for our list is an 85 mark in the current season and we'll update it regularly.