The English Gentleman in Hong Kong Racing
‘My father [Sussex-based trainer Alan Oughton] had a friend training here, Gordon Smyth, and he arranged for me to come here, meet Gordon, and have a look around,’ he recalled.
‘It was one of those classic cases of being in the right place at the right time.
An Australian trainer here, Cliff Robertson, had decided to go home and the director of racing asked me if I’d be interested in the position.
Naturally, I said yes, and we moved over at the end of that season. I’d only been training for five years in England, so it was a great opportunity.’
Oughton recalled arriving to pick up a small team of 12 horses for the 1987-88 season, from which he grafted 15 wins.
‘At the end of my first year, Gordon Smythe retired and I ended up with 60 horses.’
1987-10-10_4 — 2006-10-29_4 total 443 winnings
“I have thoroughly enjoyed my time in the Far East and been lucky enough to have been here during the times in which The Hong Kong Jockey Club has established itself as one of the leading racing jurisdictions in the world,” said Mr Oughton in a press statement in early November 2006.
Trainer Oughton first joined the Club in 1987, and has trained many well-known gallopers that scored in some of the top races in Hong Kong and abroad. Among the very best were SAN DOMENICO, CHE SARA SARA, MAZAL, IDOL, PRECISION, FIGURES, etc., and Hong Kong‘s very own Global Sprint Challenge Champion, CAPE OF GOOD HOPE. His contribution to Hong Kong racing is enormous.
“I would like to thank David for his enormous contribution to Hong Kong racing,” says Chief Executive Officer of the Hong Kong Jockey Club, Mr. Lawrence T. Wong. “I would especially like to express my appreciation for David’s help to enhance the international profile of Hong Kong racing, which was highlighted by Cape of Good Hope’s successes.”
Mr Oughton returned with his family to England in December 2006, where he looks forward to new challenges in the racing industry.