Nine from Busan and Four from Seoul set for Korean Guineas
The first leg of the 2010 Korean Triple Crown is less than two weeks away and the field is taking shape for the KRA Cup Mile – “The Korean Guineas” – which will be run at Busan Race Park on Sunday April 4.
Four challengers will be travelling south from Seoul in a bid to overturn the capital’s recent dismal record in the Triple Crown. Busan horses have swept all three classic races for each of the past two years.
Money Car leads the Capital contingent. He’s won five of his six starts with dismissive ease and has looked equally at home going round one turn or two. How he takes to Busan’s punishingly long back straight could be key to this race.
He’s joined on the trip South by Silver Mon, who’ll have some supporters due to his being grey and the Seo Soon Bae owned pair of The Almighty and Forest Wind, both lightly raced and intriguing prospects.
On the home team, Cheonnyeon Daero is a prolific placer, if not winner, and has already qualified for the top tier of racing at Busan. Dangdae Bulpae, Saeroun Taeyang, Baekjeom Manjeom and Almighty Hit are not far behind. Meanwhile, Australian trainer Peter Wolsley saddles Mega Tough, who has won or placed in all his five races to date. Daewan, Udeumji and Glory Yeonggwang perhaps have less in their favour at this point. However, over the past couple of years, Korean classics have tended not to go to form.
KRA Cup Mile (KOR.G.II) – Busan Race Park – 1600M – Apr 4, 2010
Cheonnyeon Daero [Creek Cat – Doneitmyway (Northern Flagship)] (8/2/5/1)
Dangdae Bulpae [Biwa Shinseiki – Indeed My Dear (Alydeed)] (5/4/0/0/)
Almighty Hit [Concept Win – Dixie Snow (Dixie Brass)] (7/2/3/0)
Saeroun Taeyang [Volponi – Glorious Thunder (Thunder Gulch)] (7/3/1/0)
Baekjeom Manjeom [Fiercely – Mia Victoria (Flying Victor)] (5/3/1/0)
Mega Tough [Concept Win – Keu Roo (March Magic)] (5/1/2/2)
Daewan [The Groom Is Red – Greatgrama (Border Guard)] (8/2/2/0)
Udeumji [Yehudi – Lady Dignity (Nordico)] (7/1/0/2)
Glory Yeonggwang [Didyme – Lady Sandido (Sandrigo)] (7/2/1/2)
Money Car [Newsprint – Pinocchio (Big Sur)] (6/5/1/0)
Silver Mon [Distilled – Silver Fizz (Cee’s Tizzy)] (6/2/1/1)
The Almighty [Capital Spending – Dauntless Cat (Mountain Cat)] (4/2/1/0)
Forest Wind [Capital Spending – Coffee Royale (Sword Dance)] (3/2/0/0)
As always since the KRA Cup Mile assumed the role as the first leg of the Triple Crown, much focus will also be on who is not making the trip south from Seoul. Arguably the most exciting three-year old of the lot, Northern Ace is, like Nice Choice last year, being targeted 100% at the Korean Derby in May. This backfired on Nice Choice but with Northern Ace only just back from a long lay-off, there was never much prospect of him going to Busan.
There are no fillies to follow in the hoof-steps of last year’s heroine Sangseung Ilro, who went on to win the Derby. Both Manjeomhwanhui and the unbeaten Dongbang Rose will stay in their boxes in Seoul waiting for their day to come later in the year.
Whereas in the past two years, the KRA Cup Mile has been given Korean Group 3 status, this year it has been upgraded to Group 2.
We’ll take a closer look at all the runners as the race gets closer. For now, here’s Sangseung Ilro winning last year’s event: