Zac Purton is under no illusions as to the task Massive Sovereign has in Sunday's Group 1 QEII Cup (2000m) at Sha Tin as he attempts to thwart Romantic Warrior's attempt to win the race three years running.

"I think it's the strongest race we have… the Japanese certainly have a couple of strong chances again and we have Romantic Warrior at home and Dubai Honour comes back… it's a good test for him to see where he's at," Purton said.

Massive Sovereign has only had two runs in Hong Kong, formerly trained by Aidan O'Brien in Ireland but has created waves with two fast-finishing wins, running down tearaway leader Ka Ying Generation to win the Derby- a performance Purton was taken aback by.

"I didn't realise the leader was getting away as much as he was… I was starting to worry he was going to get too much of a break on me. When I finally got out and looked up and seen how far he was in front I didn't think I was going to catch him," Purton said.

Massive Sovereign is aiming to become the sixth horse to complete the Hong Kong Derby/QEII Cup double, ironically with Romantic Warrior the last to do so in 2022, and his trainer Danny Shum is thrilled with the Group 1 Cox Plate (2040m) winner's preparation.

Since his victory at Moonee Valley, Romantic Warrior has won the Group 1 Hong Kong Gold Cup (2000m), but Shum believes he is in even better shape this time and has more travel plans locked in.

"I think his (condition) is better than his last two races. Everything is spot on," Shum said.

James Mcdonald will fly in to continue his association with Romantic Warrior and Shum confirmed that McDonald would also ride the horse at his next start, the Group 1 Yasuda Kinen (1600m) at Tokyo on the 2nd of June.

While Romantic Warrior hits this fresh, Massive Sovereign has had a quick introduction to the scene, but Purton believes he's continued to thrive in the tough jurisdiction.

"It's been rushed, but I don't feel as if its affected his performance, I think he was very good first up and even better in the Derby … he's jumping out of his skin. He's certainly come on, he's taken to Hong Kong very well," Purton said

Romantic Warrior is the $2.70 favourite and will jump from barrier 10/11 ahead of Japanese raider Prognosis at $3.80 and Massive Sovereign at $4.60.