New Zealand Bloodstock Ready To Run Sale graduate Golden Sixty’s record-breaking performance during the 2021/22 racing season saw Hong Kong’s champion earn consecutive Horse of the Year titles at a special presentation held at the Hong Kong Jockey Club’s Happy Valley Clubhouse on Friday night.
The Francis Lui-trained six-year-old’s efforts also returned back-to-back Champion Miler titles and secured the bulk of the public vote as Hong Kong’s Most Popular Horse for a third year in a row.
After winning the Gr.2 BOCHK Private Wealth Jockey Club Mile (1600m) in his seasonal return, the son of Medaglia d’Oro soared to new heights soon after with the successful defence of his Gr.1 LONGINES Hong Kong Mile (1600m) crown – a result which saw him earn recognition as the world’s joint-top miler at the year-end LONGINES World’s Best Racehorse Rankings.
Although he suffered a pair of rare defeats in his following two outings as he failed to reach Silent Witness’ record of 17 consecutive wins in Hong Kong, he soon recaptured his winning groove in the Gr.2 Chairman’s Trophy (1600m) before closing the season in emphatic style by landing the Gr.1 FWD Champions Mile (1600m) – the 21st win of his career and second win in the race in as many years.
Victory on FWD Champions Day saw Golden Sixty overtake fellow New Zealand-bred galloper Beauty Generation as Hong Kong’s highest prize money earner in history with stakes of HK$113,400,600.
Last term, Golden Sixty became the fourth horse in Hong Kong racing history after Good Ba Ba, Able Friend and Beauty Generation to win the Horse of the Year title in the same season as both the LONGINES Hong Kong Mile and FWD Champions Mile, however, like Beauty Generation, Golden Sixty does so for the second consecutive year.
Golden Sixty was purchased by Lui out of Riversley Park’s 2017 New Zealand Bloodstock Ready To Run Sale draft for $300,000 after Riversley Park principal Sam Beatson and friend Ben Foote had pinhooked the son of Medaglia d’Oro as a yearling for A$120,000.
Fellow Kiwi-bred performer Lucky Sweynesse’s rapid rise didn’t go unnoticed as Manfred Man’s gifted youngster capped a remarkable first season as Champion Griffin of Hong Kong.
Achieving a career highlight with victory in Class 2, the son of Sweynesse shot up 36 rating points and now sits on a career-high figure of 88.
Lucky Sweynesse was sold as a Ready To Run two-year-old out of Woburn Farm’s 2020 draft for $90,000 to Joe Barnes’ J & I Bloodstock and is the second foal of Listed Wanganui Cup winner Madonna Mia.
The son of Novara Park Stud stallion Sweynesse was a trial winner out of Shelley Hale’s Cambridge stable before transferring to Hong Kong where he has won four of his six starts including his first three in succession.