Cathay Pacific Cup Victory for Eagle Mountain
The Sha Tin Racecourse in Hong Kong was alive with anticipation and excitement on Sunday, 14 December 2008, as everyone got ready for the Cathay Pacific Hong Kong International Races. The day consisted of a number of racing events with very big purses and some of the best horses in the horse racing industry were entered into the respective events. The main racing event was the two thousand meter Hong Kong Cup, and most of the locals had their hopes pinned onto Viva Pataca, but is was a trainer from South Africa, Mike de Kock, and his horse, Eagle Mountain, that caused the great upset of the day.
With a purse of $2.4 million, the Cathay Pacific Hong Kong Cup is a very lucrative Grade One race, and owner of Eagle Mountain, Sheikh Mohammed bin Khalifa Al Makoum, was merely hoping that his horse would perform well. Being away from the racecourse for some time while recovering from a pelvis injury, everyone was just hoping for Eagle Mountain to do his best and return to the stable in good health. But Eagle Mountain seems to have found the rest rejuvenating and took to the racecourse like a champion. Mike de Kock has become quite a household name in racing circles, working his way to the top through determination and dedication to racing. At present his star performers include Archipenko and Sun Classic, but on Sunday, Eagle Mountain joined those ranks and is now heading towards greater opportunities.
Eagle Mountain and jockey Kevin Shea did not have the beast break out of the starting gates, but under the guidance of Shea, Eagle Mountain managed to steer clear of trouble a few times. In the last three hundred meters of the race, Eagle Mountain effortlessly widened the gap between himself and second place finisher, Balius. Linngari crossed the finish line in third position, while the race favorite, Viva Pataca finished in fourth position.
The Rock of Gibraltar progeny is more than likely to be moved to Dubai next, where Mike de Kock will be faced with the difficult decision of choosing between the Sheema Classic and the Dubai Duty Free. If all goes well in Dubai, de Kock has his sights set on the Prince Of Wales Stakes at the Royal Ascot. Sheik Mohammed bin Khalifa Al Makoum was extremely excited about the victory, commenting to the press, “I am very lucky to be here in Hong Kong and he has proved himself a real champion.”