Second favourite takes fillies’ Cup / Namchonuijijon beaten again
Samsimnyeonsarang (4.4) won a hard fought home straight duel with favourite Daehyo (2.4) to land the KRW 63Million Sports Seoul Cup, one of the biggest fillies races of the season leading up to the Korean Oaks. Having disappointed in the two Colt’s Classics in her two previous outings, Samsimnyeonsarang, ridden by Lee Dong Kuk, set the early pace while Park Tae Jong on Daehyo sat towards the back of the twelve-strong field. Park made his move as they kicked for home and Daehyo looked to be best placed as they hit the furlong pole. Samsimnyeonsarang, however, had energy in reserve and regained the lead in the final 100 metres to win by a length with Daehyo just holding off the fast-finishing Baram Queen (6.5) for second.
Namchonuijijon was back in action in race 10 with connections looking to bounce back from the four year old’s shock defeat at the hands of Baekpa last month. That defeat is not looking so shocking anymore though as the 1.3 favourite never featured finishing a well beaten fifth behind six-year old mare Jeongtongseong (17.2). Second in the Oaks in 2005, Jeongtongseong had won just one of her five starts in 2008 up to today but she started quickly and kept on the shoulder of pace-setter Seocheon Yangban (53.3) until taking up the lead as they rounded the final turn. As Shin Hyoung Chul tried in vain to get a run out of Namchonuijijon, Nujindo (15.6) was the biggest danger, but Cho Kyoung Ho was able to keep Jeontongseong in front for a length and a half win with Northern Victor (11.5) in third. Namchonuijijon finished fifth. Being beaten by Baekpa was excused by virtue of Baekpa being a very fine horse – this time four old-stagers beat the horse many predicted to be the star-performer of 2008.
Cho Kyoung Ho and Moon Se Young both scored doubles but it was a tougher day for Chris Taylor. Following his debut win yesterday, he opened with a fifth placed finish on Jiljuyuhok (29.0) in race 1 but things went downhill from there with Silent Flirt (219.8 ) in race 3 finishing last and the horse later being banned form running for two months. This was followed by riding Balgeunhuimang (20.2) to ninth in race 4 and then, in race 7, the moderately fancied Gangcheonsan (22.1) refused to run when the stalls were opened. Eventually, the horse cantered round the track 30 seconds behind the field in a race which was won by Won Jung Il on 102.6 outsider Black Pumpkin. No fault was attached to Taylor for the performance of either Silent Flirt or Gangcheonsan which also received a two month ban for further schooling.
At Busan Race Park there was a first win for another new overseas jockey with Japanese rider Kazuyuki Watase guiding three year old Thor (3.5) to victory in race 1. Watase made his debut on Friday and he wasn’t the only Japanese jockey in the winner’s enclosure this afternoon as Toshio Uchida landed race 5 on Yongdu Baram (4,6). Feature race at Busan was won by second favourite Gongnopae (5.8 ), half a length in front of Storm Rider (82.3) and favourite Gamun Bobae (3.9).