The headline contest on the card is the closing Class 2 Camellia Handicap (3:50), which is set to be run over an extended mile on turf with over £115,000 going to the winner.
Riders Zac Purton and Joao Moreira continue to fight out a thrilling jockey’s championship and the latter is likely to be onboard the favourite for this contest, Enrichment.
Trained by John Size, Enrichment has endured a frustrating run of defeats since getting his head in front for the one and only time at Sha Tin, in February 2019.
That victory came off a mark of 85 in a similar contest to this, over 1m2f, but Enrichment has found it tough to find the winner’s enclosure since and has now gone 18 races without adding another win to his name.
In truth, he has become a rather frustrating horse, especially given he has appeared to have gilt-edged opportunities the last twice and found one rival too good on the day both times. However, the key to his chance could be the fact that he reunites with Moreira.
The Brazilian-born rider got on Enrichment for the first time since he broke his duck last time, and the duo were only beaten a head after flying from the back of the pack. He drops down in trip here, which isn’t sure to suit, but Moreira clearly gets the best tune out of Enrichment and hopes are high that he will fly late and pick up the pieces.
His biggest rivals are the Purton-ridden Dances With Dragon, who beat Enrichment last time but now has to give that runner an extra 3lb, and Happy Fun. The last-named runner would be tough to beat over a furlong shorter but will have his stamina tested here.
Reverting back to chronological order for the rest of the races on the Happy Valley card, division one of the Gladiolus Handicap (11:45) kicks things off and it’s the same duo - Size and Moreira - who will combine on the market leader Monkey Jewellery.
A two-time winner, Monkey Jewellery was placed here last week from a terrible draw and will be fancied to go two places better now he has a better starting position, but he is 0-5 at this venue and tha’ts enough to put punters off.
The value bet in the field looks to be Loriz, a course-and-distance winner who gets the assistance of Zac Purton for the first time.
His recent form has been nothing out of the ordinary, but Loriz has to be of serious interest based on his penultimate runner-up effort at Sha Tin, where he was only passed late on over a furlong further. The drop back in trip is also a plus, and both of his career wins came when he ran back at Happy Valley after a disappointing run at Sha Tin.
Next up is division one of the Lotus Handicap (12.15), in which Chad Schofield looks to have a great chance on top-weight Big Bang Bong.
A five-time winner, Big Bang Bong originally raced for David Barron in England and was second in the Group 3 Acomb Stakes at York as a juvenile, before being sold to Hong Kong.
He hasn’t lived up to his price tag since the big-money purchase, but Big Bang Bong has shown bits of pieces of form and is now 7lb lower than for his last success.
Schofield’s ride has been sent off at huge prices the last three times, but drops in grade to Class 4 company and will relish the return to a mile after finding sprint distances too sharp.
The second division of the aforementioned Gladiolus Handicap (12:45) is up next and looks a much stronger heat than the one an hour earlier, but Moreira will be on the favourite again in Yee Cheong Pegasus and this time he can justify the market support.
Tony Millard’s runner has won just once from 16 starts in his career but is in the form of his life of late and should get the dream stalking trip in behind the leaders, having been drawn in gate seven.
He races off a career-high mark of 53 but wasn’t beaten far off 2lb lower last time out and looked rather unlucky in the run. Moreira gets on for the first time and that can have a positive effect.
Back to the Lotus Handicap for division two (1:15) and it could be worth taking a punt on unexposed Mission Smart, who makes just his fourth career start and first for top trainer Frankie Lor.
A three-year-old tackling his elders, Mission Smart stayed on well from the rear of the field on his first three starts to pick up minor money and the switch of yards is set to have a positive effect.
Lor fits a first-time hood, he has drawn an inside stall in gate three and can be the chief beneficiary of a first early gallop.
In a scene similar to what you would see in the film Groundhog Day, the Gladiolus Handicap has a third division (1:45) and the Antoine Hamelin-ridden The Runner, who finished a good second over this course and distance when last seen, could run a big race.
Douglas Whyte’s charge is winless in 12 races but has dropped from a mark of 70 down to just 56 and should be able to capitalise. He has drawn well in stall four and his opposition looks easier than what he normally faces.
Chad Schofield, who looks to have a good chance earlier on the card on Big Bang Bong, teams up with the bang-in-form Larson in the Class 3 Carnation Handicap (2:15) for veteran trainer John Moore.
The three-year-old gelding has recorded form figures of 32312 on his last five starts and although he has gone up another 3lb for his latest runner-up effort, he appears to still be well ahead of the handicapper and can get back into the winner’s enclosure to the joy of favourite backers.
That man again, Chad Schofield, can land the following Chamomile Handicap (2:45) as he gets aboard another red-hot miler, in the shape of Sunshine Warrior.
Tony Cruz’s runner has won three of his last four starts and has had plenty in hand on each occasion, especially the last twice when partnered by Schofield.
He has to carry top weight this time and isn’t as well drawn in stall five, but it is likely to be very much the same story for this dual course-and-distance winner.
The last race to analyse is the Celosia Handicap (3:15), a race which looks wide open on paper although the Purton-ridden Island Shine is sure to have his fair share of supporters.
His price will probably be too short and although he has plenty in his favour, opting against backing the last-time-out winner may be the best ploy.
Preference instead is for Ping Hai Galaxy, who is well suited to the 6f trip around Happy Valley and looks to back up his success here four starts ago. Neil Callan is a solid booking and he can roust this four-year-old home.