• The week’s significant milestones
1,700 John Moore
Hong Kong: John Moore, the winningmost and longest-serving trainer in Hong Kong, hit another landmark on Saturday with his 1,700th victory in the jurisdiction thanks to Savvy Seven, who broke his maiden at the 23rd attempt in a Class 5 event at Sha Tin.
“1,700 wins – that’s a very important milestone in my life and also in Hong Kong,” said Moore, who took over from his father George Moore at the age of 35. Under HKJC rules, the seven-time champion will take compulsory retirement at the end of the season as he turns 70 in March.
50 Mike Moroney
Australia: The three-year-old Alabama Express brought up a half-century in Group 1 wins for his trainer Mike Moroney when beating older horses in Saturday’s C.F. Orr Stakes at Flemington. “When I was younger they seemed a bit easier but they are all hard earned,” said the New Zealander, who won the Melbourne Cup two decades ago with Brew and has three NZ Derbys to his name.
6 Irad Ortiz
USA: Last year’s Eclipse Award-winning jockey Irad Ortiz is in red-hot form, having extended his lead at the top of the Guflstream Park standings with a six-timer on Sunday’s card. Ortiz notched 13 victories altogether over three days from Friday to Sunday.
$800,000 Thomas Goldsmith
USA: Trucking company manager Thomas Goldsmith took home the first prize of $800,000 at the annual National Handicapping Championship at Bally’s in Las Vegas. The 57-year-old, who lives in Montgomery, California, came out on top in a field of 694 entries from 564 individual players who had qualified at tournaments around North America in 2019.
347 Triple Crown
USA: The number of three-year-olds nominated to the Triple Crown for 2020, released last week by Churchill Downs, is 347 – down by 15 on last year’s figure of 362 and the lowest total at this stage for 25 years. Among them early nominees were 35 horses based outside North America, with 20 from Japan and 11 from Ireland, headed by six from Aidan O’Brien and three from his son Joseph.
66 Saudi Cup
Saudi Arabia: The total number of overseas horses to have been allotted a place in the putative fields for the eight races at the inaugural Saudi Cup meeting stands at 66. Eight different countries were represented in the initial fields released last week for the $29.2 million event at King Abdulaziz racecourse on the outskirts of Riyadh on February 29.