Nuriyeongung beaten but Ace Galloper finds it easy / Shock from Nujindo
Ace Galloper sauntered around one circuit of the Seoul Race Park track this afternoon to claim his fifth straight win and his first as a three-year old.
Although his mount was more than capable of leading this field from wire-to-wire, jockey Cho Kyoung Ho was happy to allow outsider Ganghannara to assist with the early pace under Kim Ok Sung. Turning into the home straight, Cho asked Ace Galloper to move up a gear and the colt sped away from the rest to win to win by an eased down twelve lengths.
On making his début last summer, Ace Galloper was a little overlooked as he did so in the same race that Northern Ace broke J. S. Hold’s five furlong track record. Since then, Northern Ace has been blighted by setbacks while Ace Galloper has made great strides since breaking his maiden at the third attempt and is himself the Korean record holder over six and a half furlongs.
Ace Galloper [Chapel Royal – Explicitly (Exploit)] was conceived overseas so he won’t play any part in the Classics this year. Nevertheless, he’ll be likely to be mixing it with the very best Seoul can offer by the end of the year.
While Ace Galloper was sent off as long-odds on, there was a shock in the feature handicap as Nujindo – an old-stager who hadn’t won for almost two years and hadn’t even picked up any prize money for all of one year came through late to pull off a two length win. Left in the seven-year old’s wake as he pulled off his 90/1 upset were big names Gi Ra Seong and Hwangnyongsaji.
Nujindo capped a very good day for jockey Lee Sang Hyeok who two races earlier had partnered The Sea God as they overhauled hot favourite Nuriyeongung in the final furlong of the class 4 race 8. Though four years old, Nuriyeongung was making just his third start and, having won both his previous outings with ease, was expected to add to winnings here.
Indeed for much of the way round he was in charge but, going over eight and a half furlongs for the first time, he faltered in the last 100 metres to allow Lee and The Sea God to take the honours.
Though temperatures remained below zero, the lack of wind made for more pleasant conditions than those faced by everyone last weekend and this looks set to continue tomorrow. Seonbongbulpae will be the latest to put his unbeaten record on the line as Seoul’s Champion Two-Year Old of 2009 lines up in race 7.