Seoul & Busan Sunday: Race-By-Race Preview (October 13)

Racing on Sunday is at Seoul (11 races from 10:45 to 18:00) and Busan (6 races from 12:40 to 17:05) . Previews for Seoul follow with Busan selections underneath:

Spring Back Korea Sprint

Spring Back, seen here at the Korea Sprint, takes on the unfamiliar distance of 1800M todau (Pic: Ross Holburt/KRA) 

Race 1: Class 6 (1000M) Allowance / KRW 60 Million

Juvenile maidens to kick things off with just three of the twelve having raced before and it’s two of those who are likely to be at the top of the market. (4) RAON TAP MAN ran a very good 2nd on debut on September 8th. His stable is in good form and he’ll be well-fancied here. So will (5) HAECHAN, who despite coming 4th in his debut, was closer to the winner than Raon Tap Man and ran a faster time. Both will be on pace from the start and both are strong contenders. Among the debut-makers, (2) CHODONG ROCKET was the most impressive in trials, running a competent 2nd in a heat back in late August. (9) MEOTJIN SEUNGBU and (10) WILD WOODS also caught the eye when qualifying.

Selections (5) Haechan (4) Raon Tap Man (2) Chodong Rocket (9) Meotjin Seungbu
Next Best 10, 3
Fast Start 4, 5, 6, 10

Race 2: Class 6 (1300M) Allowance / KRW 40 Million

Maiden fillies. (9) STORM FORCE has been knocking on the door throughout her five starts so far, culminating in 2nd place over 1000M in august. She’s had nine weeks off since then and looks nicely in to make the breakthrough here. She’ll be hot favourite. (11) GI RO ran on nicely over 1000M last night and can have some confidence coming back up to 1300M today while (8) BAEK HAK may also improve for the slight increase in trip. (1) SINUI CHUKBOK and (7) FAMILY HOPE are others with scope to improve in what, the favourite aside, is not a strong race.

Selections (9) Storm Force (11) Gi Ro (8) Baek Hak (1) Sinui Chukbok
Next Best 7, 5
Fast Start 1, 6, 8, 9

Race 3: Class 6 (1300M) Allowance / KRW 24 Million

More maidens. (1) HIT THE PACE returned from seven months off to run 4th in what was admittedly a weak race on September 1st. He’ll have needed that though and should come on for it today and he has winning chances here. (2) J.S. POWER has hinted at ability over three outings so far, all of them at 1000M. He’s run through the line pleasingly enough each time and could appreciate the additional trip here. (8) TOUR DIA and (10) KHAN ACE are the only two in the field to have 2nd place finishes to their names and both can aim to place here. (5) COLORS DE LAGO best of the rest.

Selections (1) Hit The Pace (2) J.S. Power (8) Tour Dia (10) Khan Ace
Next Best 5, 12
Fast Start 2, 9, 10, 11

Race 4: Class 5 (1300M) Handicap / KRW 40 Million

(3) LOVE RACE got her maiden win in March and was then off for four months. Since returning, she’s run three times with a 3rd and a pair of 4ths. She’s nicely drawn to get to the lead here and she could well win. (2) MAPAEBONG comes in off back to back 3rd place finishes, both of them at class and distance and in arguably slightly tougher company than this so he should be firmly in contention. (8) ROYAL SMARTY has three 3rd places since being promoted to this level and 3rd should be a minimum requirement here. (6) HANEUL ACE and (7) TAEPUNG EYES look best of the rest.

Selections (3) Love Race (8) Royal Smarty (2) Mapaebong (6) Haneul Ace
Next Best 7, 10
Fast Start 3, 5

Race 5: Class 4 (1000M) Allowance / KRW 75 Million

Imported maidens here with just three of them having raced before. All three are likely to be towards the upper end of the betting market with (4) J.S. GUNJU the likely favourite having run 4th on debut three weeks ago, coming from well off the pace after a shaky start. Expect him to be ridden much closer much earlier today. (2) OKRYONG was well back in the same race but there was nothing wrong with his time and he can improve today. (6) MOVIECUS is the only one to have raced twice and he’s done well, registering a 2nd and a 3rd and looks good for at least another in the money finish today. It therefore won’t be easy for the newcomers although Daredevil colt (1) ECHO BILL and Street Boss filly (7) THANK YOU BOSS both looked competent enough in trials.

Selections (4) J.S. Gunju (6) Moviecus (1) Echo Bill (7) Thank You Boss
Next Best 2, 3
Fast Start 4, 6, 7

Race 6: Class 5 (1700M) Allowance / KRW 40 Million

(5) MUDO returned from five months off at the end of August to resume normal service of running 2nd, something he’s now done in three of five starts. He was only beaten less (more…)


Seoul Saturday: Race-By-Race Preview (October 12)

Saturday racing is at Seoul with 12 races from 10:45 to 18:00. Here are the previews:


Antonio Da Silva won the KRA Cup Classic on Dolkong last week and looks to have a decent book of rides at Seoul on Saturday

Race 1: Class 6 (1000M) Allowance / KRW 40 Million

Weak juvenile maiden, but something has got to win. That should be (6) P.K. HILL, who with a 2nd and two 5ths to her name so far has better form than anything else here and she has run faster times too. She should be on pace early and will take some beating. (10) BODY STAR ran 5th of 11 on debut back in June and while he struggled on his return in August, it was over 1300M and he weakened late on. Back at the minimum distance today, he can be close. (1) ROCK LINE didn’t go great on debut but should have come on for it, similarly (5) CHEON CHONG.

Selections (6) P.K. Hill (10) Body Star (1) Rock Line (5) Cheon Chong
Next Best 8, 7
Fast Start 1, 6, 9, 10

Race 2: Class 6 (1000M) Allowance / KRW 60 Million

Juveniles here with four of them racing for the first time. Of those, (5) NEW MOON WARRIOR won his trial in a fast time and while he was assisted by a muddy track, if he brings that form to the races, he has every chance of going very well first-up today. The other contenders all have experience. (4) POWER TOWER ran 4th on debut on September 1st and should have come on for it while (2) DAHAENGIDA was a little slow to get going on his first start at the end of August but ran on well for 6th and can improve today. (7) BLUE K and (10) BLUE KING are others to take into account.

Selections (5) New Moon Warrior (4) Power Tower (2) Dahaengida (7) Blue K
Next Best 10, 6
Fast Start 3, 4, 5, 10

Race 3: Class 6 (1300M) Allowance / KRW 60 Million

More juvenile maidens and (2) BEST TAP ran a good 3rd on debut on September 8th, coming from well off the pace over 1000M. The step up in trip today should give him more to work with and he’s the one to beat here. (11) WILD KINGDOM was a disappointing 9th behind Best Tap in that race but previously ran 3rd over 1200M and should also go better back up in trip today. (8) DYNAMIC PUNCH was a little one-paced when 6th on debut but should come on today while (7) MACH NEDAN and first-time starter (12) LUXURY CAPTAIN are others who should be in the hunt.

Selections (2) Best Tap (8) Dynamic Punch (11) Wild Kingdom (12) Luxury Captain
Next Best 7, 10
Fast Start 6, 8, 11

Race 4: Class 6 (1300M) Allowance / KRW 24 Million

Weak maiden here and the step up in trip could well be what (11) GOLD FIELD needs in order to make the breakthrough. She has some reasonable showings to her name at 1000M and in this company ought to be able to make it to the lead early. (1) KINGLY has also hinted at ability across ten starts so far and should go close here while (12) HYEONGMA PUBU has similarly managed to continually get beaten despite at times looking to have potential. Those three are likely to be the favourites with (2) NEOSEONG BYOKRYOK and (10) BEF K others with potential to improve.

Selections (11) Gold Field (1) Kingly (12) Hyeongma Pubu (2) Neoseong Byokryok
Next Best 10, 3
Fast Start 4, 8, 11

Race 5: Class 6 (1700M) Allowance / KRW 24 Million

(11) ANY SEON beat four of these on her way to a close 2nd place finish on a wet track at this distance on September 8th. It was her first try at 1700M and she seemed to thrive at it and she’ll be the one to beat today. (3) MACH SEUNGCHEON improved when tried at this distance for the first time last start and can build on that today. (5) SUPER VICTOR struggled in her latest two, both at 1300M, but has gone well at this trip in the past and should be in the placing frame here. (9) DAE YONGWANG steps up to two-turns for the first time and looks to be best of the rest.

Selections (11) Any Seon (3) Mach Seungcheon (5) Super Victor (9) Dae Yongwang
Next Best 8, 7
Fast Start 3, 5, 9, 11

Race 6: Class 4 (1000M0 Allowance / KRW 75 Million

A maiden for imported juveniles with six of the ten racing for the very first time. And one of those first-timers is set to be hot favourite. (4) CUPID MISSION made all in is trial, (more…)

Busan Friday: Race-By-Race Preview (October 11)

The weekend’s racing gets underway on Friday at Busan with 11 races from 11:30 to 18:00. Here are the previews:

Busan World Sun

Race 1: Class 6 (1000M) Allowance / KRW 60 Million

Juvenile maiden with all but one racing for the very first time. That one, (7) JEONSEOULUI PUNCH didn’t make much impact on debut last month so it’s the first-timers who will be preferred. A few of them look quite handy. (1) TOUCH STAR MAN is the second foal out of Korean Oaks winner Useung Touch. The first, Power Touch, is a winner of three from eight so far and Touch Star Man trialled up nicely in September. (6) MAN OF THE WORLD trialled up slightly better and looks set to be favourite. He’s a half-brother to Brig, a winner of nine races and who is still going round as a nine-year-old now. (2) YEONGSEONG VICTORY and (3) GRAND YEOWANG are others who looked good when trialling up and who can go well first-up.

Selections (1) Touch Star Man (6) Man Of The World (3) Grand Yeowang (2) Yeongseong Victory
Next Best 7, 5
Fast Start 1, 2, 3, 6

Race 2: Class 6 (1000M) Allowance / KRW 60 Million

More juvenile maidens, this time with four of them having raced before. All four have shown a bit of ability. (2) CENTUM BEONGAE was an improved 4th on his second start at the beginning of last month. He’s drawn nicely to be on pace here and should improve again. (6) JEONSEOLUI BULKKOT and (7) FUTURE KING both did nothing wrong on their respective debuts and have firm foundations to build on here while (8) YEONGWON DYNAMO was well back on his second racecourse appearance in August but had previously run 3rd on debut and comes in here after ten weeks off with scope to go better. The one they will all need to beat, however, is a first-time starter. (3) MIRACLE DREAMING looked very sharp in two trials and if he brings that form to the races, could be hard to beat.

Selections (3) Miracle Dreaming (2) Centum Beongae (6) Jeonseolui Bulkkot (7) Future King
Next Best 8, 5
Fast Start 2, 3, 7

Race 3: Class 6 (1000M) Allowance / KRW 24 Million

(2) POWER WONDERFUL ran 3rd when sent off at long-odds on what was his second start on September 20th. He beat a couple of these in the process and if he runs similarly today, will take some beating. (8) YEONGSEONG BRAVO was 6th in that race, just under two-lengths in arrears, and could prove to be the biggest danger here, likely coming from off the pace. (6) TWO TWO WAY has shown ability in the past and can benefit from the eight weeks she’s had since her latest run. (11) MASEONG KWAEGEOL has shown slight but noticeable improvement over three outings so far and can continue it here.

Selections (2) Power Wonderful (8) Yeongseong Bravo (6) Two Two Way (11) Maseong Kwaegeol
Next Best 3, 5
Fast Start 2, 3, 6, 9

Race 4: Class 6 (1300M) Allowance / KRW 40 Million

(3) TWO TWO FAIRY beat two of these on her way to a good 2nd place over this distance in a similar all-filly race to this three weeks ago. She led for parts of that race and today can be leading when it counts. (5) CHEONNYEONUIHEUIMA ran 4th in that race and while she was a full nine-lengths behind Two Two Fairy. She may not overturn that form here but can get closer. (1) ARA MYUNGMA has a 2nd place to her name and comes in following 5th in a stronger race than this. That was back in July and the three months off may be to her benefit. (8) BARAMUI YEOSIN steps up in trip for the first time and could improve while of the two first-time starters, Thomas Gillespie’s (2) FASHION KEY looks the more likely to make an immediate impact.

Selections (3) Two Two Fairy (5) Cheonnyeonuiheuima (2) Fashion Key (1) Ara Myungma
Next Best 8, 4
Fast Start 7, 8

Race 5: Class 6 (1600M) Allowance / KRW 24 Million

(3) WILD GERANIUM returned from five months out to run 4th at this distance on September 20th, beating a couple of these along the way. It took her a while to get going that day, but she should have come on for the run and can win here. (6) AFLEET YOUNG has run through the line well in both his two outings so far. Both times he’s been a long way back though so the additional furlong and a half today may well suit. (7) SAEROUN SEUNGJA raced twice without distinction around the turn of the year but looked much better when brought back last month. He too tries the distance for the first time and can benefit for it. (5) KING DOMBO and (8) TWO TWO DAY are others who should be aiming for improvement.

Selections (3) Wild Geranium (6) Afleet Young (7) Saeroun Seungja (5) King Dombo
Next Best 8, 1
Fast Start 7, 8

Race 6: Class 2 (1800M) Allowance / KRW 90 Million

After all those maidens suddenly a class 2 jumps out at us. (12) CAPTAIN GUY is up in class following a nine-length score over this distance on September 20th. He was 15/1 that day and it was a big uptick in form but he it was a really good performance in a fast time and a repeat can’t be ruled out. (6) YEONGGWANGUI CHAMP comes in having won at class and distance on June 30th, with two of these behind him. He’s been off since and he (more…)

KRA Cup Classic Sunday – Seoul & Busan Race-By-Race Preview (October 6)

September’s Keeneland Korea Cup and Sprint resulted in home wins for the very first time. While Sprint winner Blue Chipper seems set to make his next start in the USA, this Sunday at Seoul Racecourse, Cup winner Moonhak Chief headlines what is in effect, a re-match of the big race against domestic rivals Cheongdam Dokki and Dolkong, over 2000M in the KRA Cup Classic (KOR G2). There are 11 races at Seoul on Sunday from 10:45 to 18:00 and 6 at Busan from 12:40 to 17:10. Race-by-race is below with horse by horse for the Cup Classic. Busan selections at the bottom:

Moonhak Chief Moon Se Young Korea Cup

Moonhak Chief & Moon Se Young winning the Korea Cup last month (Pic: Ross Holburt/KRA)

Race 1: Class 6 (1000M) Allowance / KRW 60 Million

Juvenile filly maiden to kick things off with precisely half the field having raced before. Three of those did rather well. Both (6) DOKBO CHEONHA and (10) GEOSEN JILJU ran 2nd on their respective debuts last month, both in good times with the latter only beaten a nose. Both are likely to be on the early speed here and have serious claims. (3) QUIET ADELE ran 3rd on her debut back in August, coming from just behind the pace and running through the line well. She should have come on for the eight weeks off and should go close. Among the first-time starters, (8) STUNNING HANSEN was a trial winner at the end of August while (5) SHINY QUEEN also caught the eye in her heat. As ever with the newcomers, watch the market for additional clues.

Selections (10) Geoseon Jilju (3) Quiet Adele (6) Dokbo Cheonha (8) Stunning Hansen
Next Best 5, 2
Fast Start 6, 10

Race 2: Class 4 (1000M) Allowance / KRW 75 Million

More juvenile maidens here, this time with five of the twelve having raced before. Both (10) DYNAMIC COMING and (12) BRAVE QUEEN ran 2nd on their respective debuts, the former over 1300M and the latter over today’s distance. Despite their wide draws, both will be expected to head to the front here and both should be in the mix. (7) HWANGGEUM LUCKY was anything but lucky on his debut back in August. He had previously trialled well though so gets a chance today. It’s one of the debut-makers that they’ll need to beat tough. (2) UNCLE BELL looked extremely competent when winning a trial in a fast time – ahead of a couple of the other first-timers here – two weeks ago. He came from just behind the early pace and if he brings that kind of form to the races, he’ll be tough to beat. (4) MUNHAK TAP too won his trial and should go well first up.

Selections (2) Uncle Bell (10) Dynamic Coming (12) Brave Queen (4) Munhak Tap
Next Best 7, 8
Fast Start 10, 12

Race 3: Class 6 (1300M) Allowance / KRW 40 Million

More maidens and (10) MEOTJIN GEUMSEONG looks set to be hot favourite. He’s run 4th in both his starts so far, both times being defeated by very useful looking types, most recently at this distance. He hasn’t led in his races yet but expect him to be ridden forward here and he should win. (5) THE BEAST also enters with two 4ths from two starts. He steps up in trip for the first time here and is the main danger to the favourite. (8) CHOGANGGUK didn’t nothing much wrong when 5th on debut at this distance at the end of August and can build on it here. Similarly (9) J M FIGHTER has hinted ability across his two efforts so far. The more experienced (3) BAEKDU GEOPO looks best of the rest.

Selections (10) Meotjin Geumseong (5) The Beast (8) Chogangguk (9) J M Fighter
Next Best 3, 11
Fast Start 1, 6, 10

Race 4: Class 5 (1300M) Handicap / KRW 60 Million

Fillies (and one mare) only. (2) CHEONDUNG YEOUL led gate to wire for a five-length win over 1000M on debut on September 1st. She steps up in both class and distance today but the manner of that score suggests there is more to come. She looks to be the only real early speed here and she can win again. (8) QUEEN OF CAMP remains a maiden but has finished in the top four on no fewer than nine of her eleven starts and while she may have to settle for another near miss, she shouldn’t be far away. (3) PRIME QUEEN and (6) RAON MIRACLE should both improve on their respective last starts given the slightly softer company today. (7) MASYA is another capable of going close.

Selections (2) Cheondung Yeoul (8) Queen Of Camp (3) Prime Queen (6) Raon Miracle
Next Best 7, 4
Fast Start 2

Race 5: Class 4 (1000M) Handicap / KRW 60 Million

(2) SAGWARANG returned from almost a year out to pick up right where she left off and won over this distance on August 10th. That was at this class and while there are perhaps a few more dangers this time around, there’s no reason why she can’t win again. (7) JEONGSANG STAR was rapidly promoted to this class following back to back wins, one a dead-heat, in July and August. She ran a useful enough 5th on her first try at this level over 1200M last month but should be better dropped back to the minimum trip today. (4) ULTRA CHAMPION returns after eight months off and looked sharp in a trial a couple of weeks ago, (11) FIRENZE HILL and the up in class (12) GEUMSEONGHWANGJE are others to take into account.

Selections (2) Sagwarang (7) Jeongsang Star (4) Ultra Champion (12) Geumseonghwangje
Next Best 11, 9
Fast Start 2, 8, 12

Race 6: Class 5 (1700M) Allowance / KRW 40 Million

(5) CHUNGDAM HORANGI never really recovered from an early bump when well backed last start and ended up beating only two home. He’s better than that though and well worth another chance today. (10) RED SUN too had a hard time last start but steps up to this distance for the first time and can go better here. (1) ACE DONQUI and (12) GOLD LEVEL are both up in class having won at this distance on their respective latest starts. Both will need to improve significantly if they are to have a chance here though with (4) AMARONE and (11) COLORS KING perhaps more likely candidates.

Selections (5) Chungdam Horangi (10) Red Sun (11) Colors King (12) Gold Level
Next Best 4, 9
Fast Start 4, 8

Race 7: Class 4 (1200M) Handicap / KRW 60 Million

(2) GEUMSEONG YEOWANG ran out a five-length winner at class and distance on August 18th and while he carries an additional 3.5kg today, still looks very much the one they’ll need to beat here. He led gate to wire that day and is well drawn to do the same. (3) GEUMA ANNUITY remains a maiden following twelve attempts but has been consistently close and should be a danger here while (7) MUNHAKUI JEONSA is a class and distance winner already and still looks to have scope for further development. (4) GREAT LEE is (more…)

Seoul Saturday: Race-By-Race Preview (October 5)

There are 12 races at Seoul on Saturday from 10:45 to 18:00. The feature is the very last race on the card and Dia Socks, runner-up to Blue Chipper in the Korea Sprint last month, is set to be favourite. Here are the previews:

Dia Socks Sprint 2nd

Dia Socks got a great 2nd in the Korea Sprint (Pic: Ross Holburt/KRA)

Race 1: Class 6 (1000M) Allowance / KRW 60 Million

Twelve previously unraced juveniles go around here. The only trial winner among them is (4) CHEROKEE MARINE and that fact alone puts him firmly in contention. However, his heat wasn’t especially fast and (1) MINE HUNTER and (10) DAESEUNG QUEEN are more favoured. They both finished 2nd in their respective trials, both of them in decent times and with both looking competent. The pair of them are likely to join Cherokee Marine on pace early and it is Mine Hunter who is the slight pick. (8) GONGJAK WANG and (12) GRAND MASTER are two others who looked good in their trials and can go well first up.

Selections (1) Mine Hunter (10) Daeseung Queen (4) Cherokee Marine (12) Grand Master
Next Best 8, 7
Fast Start 1, 4, 10, 11

Race 2: Class 6 (1300M) Allowance / KRW 40 Million

Juvenile maidens with all but one having raced before. That solitary debut-maker has a chance though. (12) SUNWOO ENTHEUS has been through a few trials, winning one and coming second in another, that latter 2nd in an especially fast time. If she can bring that form to the races, she’ll be right in the mix. The one she needs to beat though is (7) HWANGGEUM HAE. Also a trial winner, he ran 2nd on debut on August 31st and while he was beaten seven-lengths by good winner Raon Best Man, he showed enough to suggest a win of his own shouldn’t be too far away and it could well be here. (1) LUCKY SANGUN did nothing wrong when 4th on his August debut. (3) GEOMPO and (9) RISING VICTORY are others who ran well first-up and can build on those promising debuts today.

Selections (7) Hwanggeum Hae (12) Sunwoo Entheus (1) Lucky Sangun (3) Geompo
Next Best 9, 4
Fast Start 1, 3, 7

Race 3: Class 6 (1300M) Allowance / KRW 40 Million

Maiden for fillies and (10) CHOEGANG CAMP comes in having run 2nd over 1000M on her third career start on September 7th. She ran through the line well and the additional furlong and half today could see her home on top. (7) BLUE BAND was beaten by Choegang Camp on her most recent start in August. She’s had eight weeks off since then and should be better. (8) BEST GOLD was a much improved 2nd at this distance a month ago and can build on that today. (4) ALL MY QUEEN and (5) HWARYEO are others to consider.

Selections (10) Choegang Camp (8) Best Gold (7) Blue Band (5) Hwaryeo
Next Best 4, 11
Fast Start 6, 7, 10, 11

Race 4: Class 6 (1300M) Allowance / KRW 24 Million

(2) MASEONG JILJU looked a much better prospect on his return from four months out – and with a handful of additional trials under his belt – when 2nd over 1000M on September 1st. That wasn’t a strong race and he is up in trip today but looks the one to beat. (8) SEOUL MAGIC was 5th behind Maseong Jilju last time and he can get closer today, but the main danger will be (4) BE ZENITH. He’s run 5th in both outings so far and coming from off the pace, he should be in the mix today. (3) WONDERFUL DANCER and (12) ARASHI are others capable of at least a place.

Selections (2) Maseong Jilju (4) Be Zenith (12) Arashi (8) Seoul Magic
Next Best 3, 1
Fast Start 2, 6, 8, 11

Race 5: Class 5 (1000M) Handicap / KRW 40 Million

(11) BLADE STORM is up in class having been a five-length winner (ahead of Choegang Camp from race 3) over this distance on September 7th. That was his first race back after almost six months off and while he has another wide draw to overcome here, he is the one to beat. (1) HANEUL GONGWON is also up in class after her maiden win. It was back in July, so she’s had ten weeks off, but she’s drawn nicely on the inside and looks a big danger here. (2) SENTOSA remains a maiden but has been knocking on the door in recent starts and looks good for a place again. (6) GYEONGGUKJIMA is another up in class who can be competitive while (9) DALLINEUN ACE looks best of the rest.

Selections (11) Blade Storm (1) Haneul Gongwon (2) Sentosa (6) Gyeonggukjima
Next Best 9, 8
Fast Start 1, 5, 7, 11

Race 6: Class 5 (1300M) Handicap / KRW 40 Million

Competitive race. (6) HANSEN BAROWS is the slight pick following strong showings in his latest two efforts. He goes well for Alan Munro and today could be their day. (5) WINNER BLUE steps up in both class and distance following a tight win over 1000M last month. He’s drawn well to get on the early speed, and he will be a danger. So too will (7) (more…)

Busan Friday: Race-By-Race Preview (October 4)

The weekend’s racing gets underway at Busan on Friday with 11 races from 11:30 to 18:00. Here are the previews:


Race 1: Class 6 (1000M) Allowance / KRW 60 Million

Juvenile maiden fillies to kick things off with and three of the eight have raced before. Of those three, (7) BEST HAPPY was the best running 3rd of 9 at this distance at odds approaching 70/1 and she’ll be a leading contender here. Of the first-time starters, (1) QUEEN OF THE YEAR won her trial in good fashion two weeks ago and should go well first up while (6) HALLA BIHO ran 2nd in the same heat and she too can begin positively. (8) TRIPLE TIARA is another who caught the eye in her trial, albeit all the way back in June. As ever look for clues from the betting market.

Selections (1) Queen Of The Year (7) Best Happy (6) Halla Biho (8) Triple Tiara
Next Best 2, 4
Fast Start 1, 6, 8

Race 2: Class 6 (1000M) Allowance / KRW 40 Million

Maidens again although this time all but one of them have raced before. (9) DAEJI JARANG is the only one of them to have finished on the board so far, running 2nd at this distance back in August. He couldn’t follow up on his reappearance on September 6th, but he got a significant bump at the start which did him no favours at all. He can win this. (3) KKEUTPAN CLOSER races for the first time since July and has hinted at ability in the past, while (4) HANBIT TAEYANG hasn’t done much wrong in two starts so far and could well improve here. (1) DAESAN GAPBU and (6) CENTER FORWARD are others with scope to improve.

Selections (9) Daeji Jarang (3) Kkeutpan Closer (4) Hanbit Taeyang (1) Daesan Gapbu
Next Best 6, 5
Fast Start 3, 4, 5, 9

Race 3: Class 4 (1000M) Allowance / KRW 75 Million

The second division of this split maiden. (8) GEUMA CAVALRY ran 2nd on debut on August 4th and the Kim Young-kwan trainee looks set to go one better here. He didn’t begin especially well that day but should have come on for the run and is probably the banker favourite of the day. (2) YES FAIR and (4) TWO TWO LEADS have both offered some evidence of ability, with the latter looking the biggest threat to the favourite here. There are five first time starters. Both (5) SUPER SANTA and (7) SO MUCH GO caught the eye in trials and should go well first-up.

Selections (8) Geuma Cavalry (4) Two Two Leads (7) So Much Go (2) Yes Fair
Next Best 5, 1
Fast Start 2, 5, 7

Race 4: Class 6 (1300M) Allowance / KRW 24 Million

(8) ECTON STEALTH disappointed last time but steps back up to 1300M today and should get the better of this relatively weak field. He’ll settle behind the pace and should be too strong late on. (7) SUPER GREAT showed significant improvement when 2nd over this distance on September 6th. That was his first start for brand new trainer Son Byoung Jig and he can potentially follow up today. (3) WORLD SLAM ran 5th in the same race and should be aiming to get closer here. (2) DALGI and (9) BORYEONG JILJU are both likely to be on pace from the start and both have claims on at least a place.

Selections (8) Ecton Stealth (7) Super Great (3) World Slam (2) Dalgi
Next Best 9, 6
Fast Start 2, 6, 9, 10

Race 5: Class 6 (1300M) Allowance / KRW 24 Million

Nothing enters here in anything resembling form. (5) WONDERFUL HEAT demonstrated some improvement when 6th in his second start back in August. He won’t need to improve too much to be right in this. (10) WILD GUY too has done nothing in his latest two but both races were better than this and he should be much closer here. (4) WONDERFU EI has raced just the once and can build on the midfield finish he achieved. (1) MACH STORM and (6) MAX POWER are others who are capable of beating a few.

Selections (5) Wonderful Heat (10) Wild Guy (4) Wonderfu Ei (6) Max Power
Next Best 1, 2
Fast Start 1, 6, 10

Race 6: Class 5 (1600M) Handicap / KRW 40 Million

(9) TIZBE looks to have a bit of class about her and ran a good 2nd on her first try at this class over 1800M in August. She drops back to a mile today, should be close to the speed from the start and she could go all the way. (3) URANUS J and (10) PEACE RIDER also (more…)

Weekend Round-Up: Juvenile Series, Wonderful Fly Beaten, Foreign Successes

The 2019 Juvenile Series got underway on Sunday with Seoul and Busan both hosting their opening legs. The two tracks have separate 1st and 2nd legs before coming together for the finale at Busan on the first Sunday in December.

Both the Gold Circle Trophy at Busan and the Munhwa Ilbo Cup at Seoul had heavy pre-race favourites, but only one of those obliged with Save The World cruising to an easy victory on the South Coast. The Menifee colt moved onto three wins from three starts with an untroubled six-length score.

At Seoul, however, odds-on chance Choegang Team came up short as Roller Blade (Officer), who Choegang Team beat by six-lengths the last time they met, responding the better under pressure under jockey Kim Yong Geun, and running on to win by almost three lengths.

But never mind about next year’s three-year-olds, we still don’t have a clear picture about who’s the best of the current crop. Things were no clearer by the end of Sunday when Korean Derby winner Wonderful Fly and runner-up Myeongpum Chukje faced each other again over the Derby distance of 1800M at class 2 level in the concluding race 11.

At the top of the stretch, the pair of them were four-lengths clear of the rest and looked set to duel to the line. Could we finally get some idea as to who was the best locally bred three-year-old, at least in Seoul? No. Both capitulated in the stretch run leaving filly Clear Geom (Clear Attempt) to run through and claim the spoils.

Clear Geom was the surprise winner of the Gyeonggi Governor’s Cup, the final leg of the “Triple Tiara” to decide Champion filly back in June. In that race, she ran down the previously unbeaten Dia Road, who finally returned to the track for the first time since that day in a successful effort over 1400M on Saturday. In a division with no standout, Clear Geom perhaps now has as much claim as any to be considered the best of them.

As for the foreign contingent, Richard Oliver partnered Hwaranguichampion to victory in race 4 at Busan on Friday, while Bart Rice’s talented Adios Charlie colt Ssonsal registered his third victory from seven starts in race 10. The Rice Stable followed up on Sunday with another promising one, Good Dancer, who registered his fourth win from eight attempts, in race 2.

Ioannis Poullis was also among the winners on Sunday, keeping his partnership with top trainer Kim Young-kwan going for at least another week by winning race 3 on Power Touch. The Nokwon Farm bred colt is the first foal to make the track out of former Champion filly Useung Touch. One race later it wasn’t such a good result for Peter Wolsley’s Mr. Afleet, with the colt, stepped up to 1800M as he sought a fifth win on his sixth start, unable to run down B.K. Gambol – a filly he was giving 5kg to – coming up short by a head.

Possibly the biggest foreign success of the weekend though belonged to Richard Oliver, who closed out Sunday’s card riding Core Blade to a battling win over 1400M at class 1. The filly – who back in January was the British jockey’s first ride at Busan – held off a resurgent Hello Venus to take the line by a head. Core Blade’s dam Soseono is half-sister to Subsidy, who was one of the top horses in Seoul in the early 2000s.

Alan Munro and Antonio Da Silva both rode winners at Seoul over the weekend while new French trainer Tony Castenheira saw his first Korean runner, Choegang Singi, run a good 2nd in Sunday’s race 5. Castenheira opened his stable last month and currently has nine horses under his charge.

Finally, it’s well done to Lee Dong-jin, who is the latest jockey to shed his apprentice claim. Lee rode two winners on Saturday’s Seoul card to take his career tally to 40 and in the process lose his final kilogram allowance. Lee, who debuted in 2017 has a strike rate of approximately 7% from 560 mounts. He’s proven adept at positioning horses and is strong in the finish so a promising career could beckon.

Coming up this weekend, it’s a Korea Cup rematch as Moonhak Chief makes a quick return to the track to once again face Cheongdam Dokki and Dolkong in Sunday’s KRA Cup Classic.

We also expect to get confirmation of whether Korea Sprint winner Blue Chipper is going to ship to Santa Anita for a potential tilt at the Breeders’ Cup Mile – he’s already listed as a potential starter, along with Ambassadorial – the UK-trained runner who performed so well for 3rd in the Korea Cup. Right now, the odds are that he will.