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    Massive Sovereign to participate in147th BMW Hong Kong Derby
Massive Sovereign to participate in147th BMW Hong Kong Derby
BMW Hong Kong Derby. Source: BMW Hong Kong

Massive Sovereign to participate in147th BMW Hong Kong Derby

Massive Sovereign made a grand entrance onto the scene earlier this month, and jockey Zac Purton is confident that the Irish-bred horse's adaptability will be a decisive factor in Sunday's (24 March) HK$26 million 147th BMW Hong Kong Derby (2000m) at Sha Tin.

The four-year-old demonstrated his prowess by convincingly defeating a strong Class 3 field on his debut in Hong Kong over the same course and distance. This will only be his second race in the city after arriving as a two-time winner in Ireland under the tutelage of trainer Aidan O'Brien.

Purton praised Massive Sovereign's temperament, describing him as a delightful horse to work with due to his relaxed nature and ability to handle anything that comes his way.

Formerly known as Broadhurst but now under the guidance of trainer Dennis Yip, Massive Sovereign effortlessly triumphed over 13 competitors at Sha Tin on 3 March. These rivals had collectively amassed 23 victories in Hong Kong, solidifying Massive Sovereign's chances in the BMW Hong Kong Derby.

The accomplished jockey has claimed victory in six championships and achieved an impressive tally of 1,689 triumphs in Hong Kong. Despite his positive outlook for the upcoming weekend, he remains cautious about the challenge that lies ahead.

“History is against him. It’s extremely hard for any PP (Privately Purchased Horse) to win first time out in Hong Kong. It’s even harder to do it at the distance that he did it at and then it’s even harder again to back that performance up and he has to do it in the Derby, so he has all of that against him,” Purton said.

Sunday's pairing with Massive Sovereign will mark Purton's 14th participation in the BMW Hong Kong Derby. His initial involvement occurred in 2009 when he rode Legend Of Colour, trained by Paul O'Sullivan.

“It’d be nice to win another one. I feel like I deserve it after all of the efforts I’ve put in,” he said.

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