Myeongmun Gamun back winning / Miss Ecton returns with defeat / Supernatural maintains record
Yeongung Manse once again got the better of classic winners Rainmaker and Ebony Storm with a classy win in this afternoon’s feature handicap at Busan Race Park. The gelding went off 4.1 third favourite and from the gate vied for the lead with Ebony Storm (3.1). It proved to be a straight battle between these two in the stretch and having hit the front for the final time two furlongs out, Jo Chang Wook kept Yeongung Manse ahead for a half length victory. Mirae Cheonsa (8.5) came home third.
Punters had kept faith with Rainmaker despite his disappointing form since his KRA Cup Mile win and he was sent off 2.9 favourite. However, coming from the back of the field, Toshio Uchida wasn’t able to find a clear run quick enough to put in a challenge, Rainmaker eventually a fast finishing fourth. It’s four runs now without victory for Rainmaker although the quick finish would suggest that if he is better placed coming off the final turn, he may have some more in him. Conversely, Yeongung Manse how has four wins on the spin and, depending on how the handicapper treats him, will surely be favourite next time out. It was another good run by Ebony Storm, the Derby winner may even have just nicked it if given a few more metres.
Earlier at Busan, Miss Ecton made her first appearance since winning the Busan Ilbo Cup all the way back in March. Lining up in race 5, the filly finished strongly but was unable to catch wire to wire winner Passing Gear (9.8 ) and second placed Ima Firecracker (8.6). In finishing third, she did, however, manage to beat favourite White Bull (2.1). Meanwhile Kazuyuki Watase scored his second double of the weekend while compatriot Toshio Uchida suffered his first winless raceday since early July.
Fifteen handlers were required to get favourite Myeongmun Gamun into the stalls in the feature at Seoul Race Park. The recalcitrant gelding lapsed back into his bad habits on his first outing since finishing second to Baekpa in the SBS Cup. As so often in his career, connections had reason to be grateful to the handlers, however, as the seven year old went on to convincingly defeat a field of nine with 71 previous wins between them in the 1900 metre race. Jung Ki Young brought Myeongmun Gamun into contention in the back straight and the rest had no answer as he made his move on the final turn. Dashing Champ, who set the course record at this distance in June, got closest but the 2.6 favourite never looked in danger. Baengnokjeong, third in the SBS Cup, took the same position today.
It looked as though Dixie Vicar was going to end Supernatural’s 100% win record as the two battled it out in the final furlong of the 1400 metre race 9. However, Park Soo Hong asked the New Zealand bred gelding to find something more and Supernatural responded at the right time to get up by a length. The four year old Supernatural [Danske – Dance On Deck (Yachtie)] now goes three for three. Although unable to hold on, it was another good performance from the filly Dixie Vicar who was coming off the back of two consecutive wins.
The beautiful weather at both tracks ensured good attendances and although field size was disappointing in a number of races, overall both Seoul and Busan provided a good afternoon’s sport.