Maurice the personal highlight of HKIR day and week

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December 11th, 2016

HONG KONG - The Hong Kong International Races (HKIR) on Sunday had a little bit of everything.

The massive upset of Highland Reel in the Vase (G1) by Satono Crown.

The home court defenses of the Sprint (G1) by Aerovelocity...

and the Mile (G1) by Beauty Only.

And the brilliant win in the Cup (G1) by Japanese Horse of the Year Maurice, who goes to stud as a two-time HKIR winner and earner of more than $9 million.

The highlight of the day for me, undoubtedly, was Maurice. He may or may not be one of the true greats from Japan to come down the pike (I'll leave that for those with more expertise on the Japanese turf), but I feel privileged to have witnessed his final run. He was the horse I was most excited to see in person this week, and he did not disappoint either at the morning trackwork nor Sunday afternoon on the track in front of a record crowd of more than 100,000.

It's been a privilege being part of the racing in Hong Kong this week. Thanks to Pat Cummings and Andrew Hawkins of the Hong Kong Jockey Club for all of their help and kindness, and to the Hong Kong Jockey Club for their excellent, first-class hospitality. Also thanks to the good racing media folks from both North America and across the globe I had the pleasure of meeting and interacting with. Finally, thanks to my superiors at for giving the chance to cover this event. I hope it's worked out to everyone's satisfaction.

This is a truly great racing event and is worth the trip if you get a chance to come.

Good night from Hong Kong.