Best Eleven third in Hong Kong Group One

Hong Kong sprinter Best Eleven boosted the evidence for the Charge Forward/Redoute’s Choice nick with a career-best performance at Sha Tin when third in Sunday evening’s $HK4.5 million HKJC Centenary Sprint Cup 1000m HK-1.

Pictured: Best Eleven, winner of 6 races from 15 starts and $HK4.5 million in Hong Kong. (PHOTO: Hong Kong Jockey Club)

The race was won for the second time by Eagle Regiment, from Frederick Engels, with Best Eleven less than two lengths from the winner, after settling behind the early leaders and kicking strongly from the 300-metre mark.

Best Eleven, an elegant, good-looking gelding from the Redoute’s Choice mare Betsy Pie was bred by Glenlogan Park Stud and purchased for $170,000 by Gai Waterhouse at the 2008 Magic Millions Gold Coast Sale. Named Piecart, he trialled three times as a 2YO in Sydney, and notably defeated the outstanding colt Smart Missile and subsequent Group winner Salade in a March 2011 barrier trial.

Soon after that effort, he was sold to Hong Kong where he is trained by Tony Cruz for owner Ma Ching Fat. Best Eleven won five of nine starts in his first campaign, including four straight in January and February 2012. He won again in May before a close third to Captain Sweet and Zabaleta in the Sha Tin Vase 1200m HK-3 in May.

Best Eleven is the latest of Charge Forward’s nine stakes performers this season, a group headed by a trio of gifted 2YOs, Assail, Crack A Roadie & Direct Charge, and a pair of 3YO fillies Cavalry Rose and Urban Groove.

Four of those current stakes performers (Assail, Best Eleven, Direct Charge & stakes-placed Moroccan Rose) are among 13 named foals bred on the Charge Forward/Redoute’s Choice cross.

It’s a combination that can be found in just two lots at the upcoming Inglis Melbourne Premier Sale: Cornerstone Stud‘s colt from Allegrini, and Flinders Park Stud‘s colt from Daria.

And there is only one yearling by Charge Forward from a Redoute’s Choice mare catalogued for the Inglis Australian Easter Sale: the sister to Assail, from Emanday, in the Arrowfield draft.

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