Last to First – Beauty Joy Wins G3

Tara Madgwick - Sunday June 19

Australian bred geldings filled the trifecta in the Group III Premier Cup (1400m) at Sha Tin on Sunday with victory going to Sebring 5YO Beauty Joy, who defeated Lucky Express (Toronado (IRE) and Healthy Happy (Zoustar).

Beauty Joy wins the G3 Premier Cup - image HKJC

Trained by Tony Cruz and ridden by Zac Purton, Beauty Joy was a short priced favourite, but gave punters a massive fright when he jumped poorly and refused to get going in the early stages.

He settled a long last under Zac Purton, but finally got into his rhythm and charged to the line to win by a length running away.

It was his third stakes success having won the Listed WATC JC Roberts Stakes as a 3YO in Australia racing as Talladega.


Beauty Joy has developed a reputation for waywardness since his arrival in Hong Kong where he has now won five races, with Purton revealing he was uncertain of even completing Sunday’s race – let alone winning it.

“Every race is something different with him, isn’t it? He was quite chilled behind the gates today and I thought ‘Oh, this is going to be nice. Maybe, he’s at the end of the season, he’s going to give me a nice ride today,” Purton said after this remarkable last to first win.

“But he jumped out and he just didn’t want to go. He was really stiff in his action. He couldn’t stretch out properly and he wasn’t comfortable. I was looking down (at the horse’s legs). I was a little bit 50-50 (about continuing) on him and I thought I would just keep on urging him along and keep him going for a little bit and see if he could warm into it.

“Once he got to the 1000m, he was okay – but I was that far off them, I thought the race was over. But he swept into it really nicely, he got there in plenty of time and then he had to fight for the win at the end.

“He’s obviously talented but he can’t keep producing performances like today and (also) in his previous starts and getting away with it. He’s got to start getting it right from here on.”

Trainer Tony Cruz believes Beauty Joy will be best suited over extended trips next season after a possible G1 LONGINES Hong Kong Mile (1600m) tilt in December.

“I think the horse hasn’t got the early speed any more and we will think about even 2000m next season,” Cruz said. “But first I will plan for the (G2 Jockey Club Mile in November) and then go for the (LONGINES Hong Kong Mile), but nothing is confirmed yet. To me I think he is a good miler, but I also think he can go further than that. I’m sure he can improve.”

Not offered at auction, Talladega ran in Australia for a big syndicate that included his breeders Impressive Racing that also raced his mother Impressive Jeuney, who won the Group III WA Oaks among her six wins.

He was sold privately to Hong Kong after winning his first four starts in Perth for Darren McAuliffe.

Impressive Jeuney has had no luck at stud in recent years, although was covered last spring by Starspangledbanner.



Race Result - The Premier Cup Gr3 1400m

Sha Tin Track: Good Time: 1:21.55
Beauty Joy
T: A S Cruz J: Z Purton 56
5g Sebring (AUS) x Impressive Jeuney (AUS) (Jeune (GB))
Lucky Express
T: J J Size J: A Hamelin 56
5g Toronado (IRE) x Il Diamante (AUS) (Testa Rossa (AUS))
Healthy Happy
T: F C Lor J: K Teetan 55
5g Zoustar (AUS) x Lady Lakshmi (AUS) (Lonhro (AUS))
Blaze Warrior
T: J J Size J: J Moreira 52.5
4g Sebring (AUS) x Liesele (AUS) (Exceed And Excel (AUS))
MM Gold Coast Yearling Sale $200,000
V:Sledmere Stud, Scone, NSW
B: Sun Bloodstock
Cheerful Days
T: K W Lui J: A Badel 53
5g Smart Missile (AUS) x Saint Minerva (AUS) (Galileo (IRE))
Lucky Patch
T: K W Lui J: Jerry Chau 59.5
5g El Roca (AUS) x Gould (AUS) (Danehill Dancer (IRE))
NZB Karaka Book 2 $32,000
V:Westbury Stud
B: Wexford Stables
T: D Whyte J: Lyle Hewitson 60.5
5h Not A Single Doubt (AUS) x Star Pupil (AUS) (Starcraft (NZ))
Inglis June (Late) Online Sale $70,000
V:Arrowfield Stud (as agent)
B: Darby Bloodstock
MM National Yearling Sale Book 1 $430,000
V:Arrowfield Stud Scone NSW
B: Muskoka Farm HK Ltd
T: A S Cruz J: M Chadwick 51.5
5g Deep Field (AUS) x Vormista (AUS) (Testa Rossa (AUS))
Silver Express
T: J J Size J: H Bentley 52
5g Canford Cliffs (IRE) x Rechichi (AUS) (Elvstroem (AUS))
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