Seoul Vs Busan Part 6
It’s the race that brings the curtain down on the racing season at Seoul – in theory anyway, in practice they’re racing again next weekend – and Dongbanui Gangja is set to become only the third horse to retain the prestigious Grand Prix at Seoul Race Park on Sunday afternoon.
The four-year old is unbeaten this year having won the Owners’ Cup as well as a selection of cherry-picked handicaps and goes in the odds-on favourite. He’ll have nine horses out to stop him, four from Seoul and five from Busan as the season long rivalry between the two tracks also reaches its conclusion.
Busan dominated the Classics, but Seoul won the only race open to older foreign bred horses, the Metropolitan at Busan last month. That winner, Bulpae Gisang, will likely be the biggest threat to his stablemate Dongbanui Gangja.
Bally Brae is back for his fourth Grand Prix having been second in 2006 and 2008 and a winner in 2007. The ever-popular gelding has struggled in his last two races but is re-united with champion jockey Moon Se Young for another assault on his favourite race.
The pick of Busan’s five entrants is Gaeseon Janggun, winner of the Minister’s Cup at Seoul last year and the only Korean bred horse in the race likely to be able to challenge the big guns from overseas.
The race will be off at 4:45pm. Click here for past performance information (in Korean). Here is a full run down of runners, pedigrees, records, track and riders:
Grand Prix (KOR. G.I) – Seoul Race Park – 2300M – Dec 13, 2009, 16:45
1. Yaho TS (USA) [Roar Of The Tiger – Propeller (Lear Fan)] C – 3 (15/4/1/1) – Seoul – Yoo Sang Wan
A first attempt at class 1, let alone a Grand Prix. Has potential, but shouldn’t trouble the placings.
2. Haengbok Dream (JPN) [Lammtarra – Sister Slew (Slew The Dragon)] C – 3 (11/4/4/2) – Busan – Hitomi Miyashita
Consistent and with an in-form jockey but would have to run better than ever before to place.
3. Bulpae Gisang (USA) [Lightnin N Thunder – Neat Trick (Clever Trick)] C – 3 (12/7/2/0) – Seoul – Park Tae Jong
Could be the one to challenge Dongbanui Gangja. Beat Busan’s finest last month and may have a surprise in store for his stablemate.
4. Bally Brae (USA) [Yarrow Brae – Political Bluff (Unaccounted For)] G – 7 (31/15/10/1) – Seoul – Moon Se Young
The grand old statesman of the Grand Prix, a Bally Brae victory would bring the house down. Hasn’t been right in his last two outings. If he’s better, he’ll challenge for a place.
5. King Kephalos (JPN) [King Glorious – Western Edge (Woodman)] G – 4 (19/8/3/3) – Busan – Yoo Hyun Myoung
A consistent winner and may enjoy the Seoul track. A chance of a place.
6. Ugildongja (KOR) [Dixie Dot Com – May Roses (Incinderator)] H – 5 (32/10/5/1) – Seoul – Ham Wan Sik
Third behind Baekgwang in October, Seoul’s only Korean representative looks outclassed here.
7. Rolling On Strong (USA) [Werblin – Gracie Gale (Opening Verse)] F – 3 (12/4/1/3) – Busan – Cho Kyoung Ho
The only filly in the race, this will be her first outing in top class company.
8. Gaeseon Janggun (KOR) [Duality – Diamond Star (Dixieland Band)] C – 4 (18/9/4/1) – Busan – Jo Chan Hoon
Last year’s Champion three-year old was second to Bulpae Gisang in the Metropolitan. He’s Korea’s best chance.
9. Crafty Louis (USA) [Louis Quatorze – Crafty Atlantic (Crafty Prospector)] G – 6 (34/13/4/2) – Busan – Jo Chang Wook
Has won three out of his last four and is one of Busan’s top handicappers.
10. Dongbanui Gangja (USA) [Broken Vow – Maremaid (Storm Bird)] C – 4 (21/14/4/2) – Seoul – Choi Beom Hyun
The odds-on favourite, Dongbanui Gangja is unbeaten since his Grand Prix win last year.