21 Nov 2021

It was Master Eight who kept his unbeaten record intact at Sha Tin on Sunday beating Nervous Witness but it was both the young Price Bloodstock sprinters who underlined their promise in a quinella result.

There was little between the pair In the betting, with David Hayes-trained Nervous Witness firming into favouritism narrowly, but the race itself was a clear victory to Frankie Lor-trained Master Eight to make it four wins from as many starts.

“Once again he showed that he’s got quality,” said champion jockey Joao Moreira. “Master Eight has won very impressively once again – coming back from 1200m to 1000m down the straight didn’t stop him and I can describe it by saying it was even easier for him than racing an extra furlong. I’m very pleased, proud and I’ve got to congratulate Frankie’s team for doing a great job.”

Lor said he had been concerned at the switch back in distance after three easy 1200m wins that had seen Master Eight’s handicap rating lifted by 33 points in three starts – and the handicapper is bound to hit him again for his first Class 2 victory, which earned his owners an extra $1 million bonus from the Jockey Club.

“I was worried about the distance, his first time at 1,000m, but he was very impressive. You could see, when he went with Nervous Witness, he still wasn’t too keen, he was still relaxed and it was a good run,” said Lor. “I don’t know how good he can be but I just hope he can keep improving and he can go up to Group races as the season progresses.”

For Nervous Witness, it was two straight defeats after beginning his career with two brilliant wins but Hayes remains full of optimism about the gelding.

“Master Eight was just too good on the day today but Nervous Witness still put up a great run and beat the rest in his first attempt in Class 2. He has only run four times, he’s still learning and there is a lot more ahead for him too,” Hayes said.