2015 Hong Kong Sprint Decision Yet to be Made for Chautauqua

November 10th, 2015

Talented sprinter Chautauqua was unable to make up the distance of talented four-year-old Delectation when second in the Group 1 Darley Classic (1200m) over the weekend, and co-trainer Wayne Hawkes has revealed the gelding will only progress to an appearance in the 2015 Hong Kong Sprint (1200m) should his work warrant the trip abroad.

Chautauqua is no certainty to contest the 2015 Hong Kong Sprint. Photo: Ultimate Racing Photos

Chautauqua is no certainty to contest the 2015 Hong Kong Sprint. Photo: Ultimate Racing Photos

Chautauqua jumped from the gates well in the Darley Classic and immediately took up a position at the rear of the field as Buffering set a notable tempo from the outset on a heavy and rain-affected Flemington track.

Immediately responding when asked for an extra effort by jockey Dwayne Dunn, the Encosta De Lago gelding charged forward but was unable to quite make up the difference on Delectation; running second by the bob of a head.

Hawkes conceded the five-year-old was not at his best in the Darley Classic and told RSN a decision on the 2015 Hong Kong Sprint remains up in the air.

“We weren’t good enough on the day and that’s what mattered,” Hawkes said.

“We only want to go if we think we’re a dead-set good thing.

“At the moment we’re still going ahead, but we only need one small thing to pull the plug.

“There’s a stack of prize money here in Australia as well.”

Chautauqua has been a standout performer for Team Hawkes since first appearing on course competitively in late 2013; posting nine wins and a further seven minors through eighteen career starts.

Returning to racing in exceptional condition through the 2014 Spring Carnival, Chautauqua won each of the Group 3 Bobbie Lewis Quality (1200m) and Group 2 Gilgai Stakes (1200m) before finishing second to Terravista in the Darley Classic.

Producing a huge effort to win the Group 2 Rubiton Stakes (1100m) upon resuming this year, Chautauqua ran second in the Group 1 Newmarket Handicap (1200m) before breaking through for a maiden win at the highest level in the Group 1 TJ Smith Stakes (1200m).

Returning this time for success in the Group 2 McEwen Stakes (1000m) on September 5th, Chautauqua continued his undefeated run through each of the Gilgai Stakes and Group 1 Manikato Stakes (1200m) leading into the Darley Classic.

Chautauqua remains clear favourite in early 2015 Hong Kong Sprint betting markets with leading online bookie Ladbrokes.com.au.