Prebble in for Private Secretary as field finalised for Hong Kong Derby

Michael Cox


Michael Cox’s Derby Watch

In the lead-up to the 2020 Hong Kong Derby, Michael Cox will provide analysis for Hutchi’s Honkers as the next generation of stars builds up to the big race on March 20. The four-year-old series began with the Hong Kong Classic Mile on January 27, continued with the Hong Kong Classic Cup on February 23 and culminates with the Derby on March 22.




Champion Australian jockey Brett Prebble will ride at Sha Tin for the first time in more than 18 months on March 22 after accepting the ride on Hong Kong Derby outsider Private Secretary.

Prebble has been riding in his homeland since leaving Hong Kong at the end of the 2017-18 season but only after becoming an all-time great.

The 42-year-old rode more than 800 winners over 16 seasons – one of only five jockeys to do so – and his heated rivalry with Douglas Whyte defined an era.

Prebble partnered some of the jurisdiction’s greatest horses including Sacred Kingdom, Lucky Nine and Cape Of Good Hope.


Brett Prebble about to release a typical celebration after winning the HKIR Sprint on Lucky Nine


The tenacious jockey also rode Bullish Luck to a Yasuda Kinen victory for Private Secretary’s trainer Tony Cruz and rode successfully in the Siu family’s famous black and red silks.

Private Secretary was one of 14 horses named as likely runners in the Derby, a race Prebble won aboard Vital King in 2007.

Cruz also has Star Performance entered but it is in-form trainer Francis Lui who has the top two elects for the race with Golden Sixty and More Than This.

It is likely to be John Moore’s last chance to add to his already record six Derbies and has two entries: Enjoying and Savvy Nine.

Enjoying enters the race following an eye-catching fourth in the Hong Kong Classic Cup and owners will fly in big race specialist Hugh Bowman for the ride.

The jockey merry-go-round has come full circle for jockey Joao Moreira, who will re-take the ride on John Size’s Champion’s Way.

Last year’s Derby winning trainer Frankie Lor has three runners; Decrypt, Super Oasis and Reliable Team.

Danny Shum pair Butterfield and Playa Del Puente, Paul O’Sullivan’s Amazing Beats and Caspar Fownes-trained Columbus County round out the field.





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