Day: May 16, 2009

Korean Derby Weekend – Sunday Preview

Korean Derby / JRA Trophy
The twelth Korean Derby goes to post at 17:00 on Sunday afternoon. With 24 hours of persistent rain already having fallen and no signs of it stopping any time soon, track conditions are sure to be similar to last year when 90/1 outsider Ebony Storm pulled off a shock win.

Eight Seoul horses and six Busan horses will line up. Amongst them are two fillies, one of whom, Sangseung Ilro is, for now at least, on course to land the Triple Crown, having won the KRA Cup Mile at Busan in April. The one sour note that hovers above this Derby is that Eiki Nishimura, the jockey who guided her to that victory, will not be with her amid suspicions that the idea of an overseas rider landing a Triple Crown is too much to take for some on the backstretches of Seoul and Busan.

Nice Choice is the likely favourite but it is an open race, especially with the rain. Sangseung Ilro has obviously staked her claim, but cases can be made for a host of others, including Yeonseung Daero, Baengnyeonbong, Sky Star and Seokcheong. In jockey Martin Wepner and trainer Peter Wolsley, Namdo Jeap and Impeccable respectively offer an overseas angle even in Eiki’s absence.

Whatever the result and regardless of the weather, hopefully the Derby can provide a race that does justice to our wonderful sport’s biggest day.

Click here to download past performance information (Korean). Full list of post positions, runners, records and riders:

Korean Derby (GI) – Seoul Race Park – May 17 2009 – 1800M, 17:00

1. Sky Star [B] [Tahamkke – Blue Lark (Ravenwood)] – (10/5/1/0) – Kim Tae Kyoung
2. Khanui Huye [The Groom Is Red – Noble Michelle (Flow Technology)] – (7/2/2/0) – Han Sung Yeol
3. Nice Choice [Lost Mountain – Betty’s Rhapsody (Don’t Hesitate)] – (6/4/2/0) – Moon Se Young
4. Seokcheong [Fiercely – Miss Geology (Jade Hunter)] – (6/4/1/1) – Park Tae Jong
5. Namdo Jeap [B] [Ft. Stockton – Wandering Katie (Tejano)] – (6/3/2/1) – Martin Wepner
6. Khanui Jeguk [Sunday Well – Lucky Dip (Didyme)] – (7/3/1/1) – Lee Jung Sun
7. Yeonseung Daero [B] [Creek Cat – Sensationalkris (Cryptoclearance)] – (8/5/1/2) – Kim Eu Su
8. Baengnyeonbong [Al Naba – Sansovino Art (Mister C.)] – (9/4/1/1) – Kim Ok Sung
9. Pangpang [B] [Revere – Awishnotalark (Rio’s Lark)] – (11/3/0/1) – Kim Hong Il
10. Impeccable [B] [Distilled – Bellebreezy (Foolish Pleasure)] – (6/4/0/0) – Park Geum Man
11. Sangseung Ilro [B] (F) [Concept Win – Miss Whiskey (Whiskey Wisdom)] – (6/4/1/1) – Jo Sung Gon
12. Triple Canon [Tahamkke – Tamna Jeilbong (Lost Mountain)] – (7/4/2/0) – Cho Kyoung Ho
13. Money Teukgeup[Ft. Stockton – Headwork (Silveyville)] – (8/2/3/1) – Choi Beom Hyun
14. Red Ball [Lethal Instrument – Wildly Magic (Pieterhof)] – (8/4/0/1) – Yang Hee Jin

JRA Trophy – Class 2 (Foreign bred) – 1200M – Race 8

Just before the Derby, the final International Trophy race of the weekend will take place and it’s the big one as the undefeated Gangho faces his first real test in the JRA Trophy. While he will likely be the overwhelming favourite, if he has a bad day, there are one or two who could cause him problems. Bulpae Gisang has four wins from six outings and Free Hugs is a proven performer at this level.

There are eleven races at Seoul on Sunday with the first under orders at 11:20. Busan Race Park hosts six races with the first at 12:40. Jeju Race Park gets underway at 12:10.

Symphony Sonata Off Key in the Wet

Super Jet, Keungori, Giant Rose land Trophy races
In atrocious conditions at Seoul Race Park, the favourites went down in all three of the International Trophy races this afternoon. It had been raining for twelve hours before the horses went to post for the first race and continued throughout racing creating a saturated track and appalling visibility for the jockeys.

While all three Trophy races were of equal value, most eyes were on the HRI Trophy where Symphony Sonata was sent off favourite off the back of four wins in six starts. Brought to the front early by Park Tae Jong, the four year old seemed well placed coming off the last turn but when asked to sprint, had nothing to offer. Instead, it was second favourite Super Jet, under Kim Young Jin who edged out Natural Guy and Choi Beom Hyun on the line after the two duelled in the final furlong.

One race earlier, Bandoui Kkum was favourite going into the AJC Trophy race, but she never got going as Moon Se Young on Giant Rose scored a clear four length victory over Choi Won Jun on Yeonjikkot with Princess Ruby in third. Meanwhile, the STC Trophy went the way of three year old filly Keungori with favourite Soseono well down the field.

STC Trophy – Seoul Race Park – 16 May, 2009 – 1300M

1. Keungori (USA) [Essence of Dubai – Goldmakesmesmile (Mining) – Kim Ok Sung – 10.5
2. Kkumchaja (USA) [Orientate – Westerville (Gone West)] – Cho Kyoung Ho – 5.3
3. Storm For Lucky (JPN) [Mejiro Ryan – Dark Moon (Real Shadai)] – Yoon Tae Hyuk – 68.3
Distances: 0.75 lengths/7 lengths – 13 ran

AJC Trophy – Seoul Race Park – 16 May, 2009 – 1400M

1. Giant Rose [Pacific Bounty – Kiss My Goldie (Candi’s Gold)] – Moon Se Young – 5.0
2. Yeonjikkot [Al Naba – Sez Babble (Psychobabble)] – Choi Won Jun – 24.1
3. Forest River [Texas Glitter – Whosis (Trempolino)] – Park Tae Jong – 8.2
Distances: 4 lengths/2.5 lengths – 14 ran

HRI Trophy – Seoul Race Park – 16 May, 2009 – 1800M

1. Super Jet [Archer City Slew – Tae Eulbong (Road of War)] – Kim Young Jin – 5.3
2. Natural Guy [Social Charter – Rocky Stream (Reprimand)] – Choi Beom Hyun – 6.5
3. Yonggeol [Psychobabble – Uri Maeum (Glorify)] – Han Sung Yeol – 129.3
Distances: Neck/4 lengths – 14 ran