By Jon Lees
Australia: Legendary Hong Kong trainer John Moore has made an immediate mark back home in Australia with a winner from the first runner sent out from the new joint venture he has set up with brother Gary.
Morethannumberone struck at Newcastle in New South Wales on Tuesday to get the partnership under way without 70-year-old John Moore having set foot in his native country due to the travel restrictions in place as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic.
Moore was forced into Hong Kong retirement at the end of the last season with the Hong Kong Jockey Club unwilling to renew his licence. He watched the race from a restaurant in the city which has been his home since 1971.
“Our first winner in the partnership with a horse owned in Hong Kong – it’s great,” said Moore, speaking to the South China Morning Post. “First runner, first winner, it couldn’t have gone better.”
During a 35-year training career Moore became the most successful trainer in Hong Kong history, sending out a record 1,735 winners, 36 at G1 level and winning more than £200 million prize-money.
He is relocating to Sydney to team up with his brother with ambitions to win a G1 in Australia once he is allowed to travel.
Although Moore was unable to persuade the Kwok family to let him take star horses Beauty Generation and Aethero with him, he has kept the ex-Clive Cox trained Crack On Crack On, who finished third in the 2019 Hong Kong Derby as Sunny Speed. The five-year-old has been entered in the Caulfield and Melbourne Cups.
Moore, who hopes to travel to Australia in October, added: “The partnership kicked off today, even though it wasn’t in the racebooks – there were some issues there because they didn’t have enough time, but it was down to start on September 1.”