Last gasp effort makes it third time lucky
Jeolho Chance led for all but ten of the two thousand metres, but favourite Gaeseon Janggun was in front when it mattered in the Minister’s Cup at Seoul Race Park this afternoon. The final leg of the Korean Triple Crown saw all three of this season’s previous Classic winners line up and it was the filly Jeolho Chance who bolted out of the gate under Cho Kyoung Ho and into an early lead. Lucky Dancer and Derby Winner Ebony Storm followed as the Oaks winner continued to set the pace in the back straight.
Gaeseon Janggun bided his time under Park Tae Jong, while Toshio Uchida brought Cup Mile Winner Rainmaker around the outside of the field and into contention as they entered the third corner. It was at this point that there was drama at the back as Magic Victor veered wildly to the right taling Super Goliath with him and ending both horses’ outside chances.
None of this mattered at the front as Jeolho Chance entered the home straight, hugging the rail and with a three length lead. She was tiring though and Gaeseon Janggun was looming. Park Tae Jong shifted the colt outside and the chase was on. For a long while it looked as though the filly would do it with neither horse nor rider prepared to go quietly as the gap closed but then seemed to stabilise once more with 100 metres to go. It was then that Park Tae Jong was able to find a little more from Gaeseon Janggun and they finally swept past within touching distance of the line. A full eight lengths behind the leading pair, Namchon Party salvaged a small amount of pride for Seoul horses as he beat out Rainmaker in a photograph for third.
Having finished second in both the KRA Cup Classic and the Korean Derby, today was finally Gaeseon Janggun’s day. Jeolho Chance gave everything that could have been have been expected of her but Gaeseon Janggun is clearly a horse with both speed and stamina and once more, Park Tae Jong judged his run to perfection, the veteran winning this race for the second time in his career. With the win, Busan horses completed a clean sweep of the Triple Crown races through Rainmaker, Ebony Storm, Jeolho Chance in the Oaks and now Gaeseon Janggun. In one disappointing piece of news, however, after the race Rainmaker was found to be lame and will be out of action for six months.
Minister of Agriculture Cup (G.II) – Seoul Race Park – 2000M – Oct 12, 2008
1. Gaeseon Janggun (KOR) [Duality – Diamond Star (Dixieland Band)] – Park Tae Jong
2. Jeolho Chance (KOR) F [Didyme – Harboring (Boston Harbor)] – Cho Kyoung Ho
3. Namchon Party (KOR) [Fiercely – Cheulgeoun Party (Big Sur)] – Oh Kyoung Hoan
Distances: 0.5 lengths and 8 lengths.
Meanwhile at Busan, it was Gyeongnam Sinmun Cup Day, one of the biggest Busan races for fillies and mares and it was favourite Haneul Cheonsa who was the convincing winner coming from the back of the field to the front as they rounded the final turn and sprinting away for a six length victory from Mighty Angel:
Gyeongnam Sinmun Cup – Busan Race Park – 1600M – Oct 12, 2008
1. Haneul Cheonsa [Didyme – C’est Avie (Lord Avie)] – Han Sang Kyu
2. Mighty Angel [Revere – Almost Persuaded (Chillon)] – Chae Gyu Jun
3. Myeongpumjilju [Barfighter – Three Hearts (Defensive Play)] – Jo Chang Wook
Distances: 6 lengths and 2 lengths