Day: April 1, 2011

Friday Night Wine & Wagering

Busan Friday Round-Up / Saturday’s Punts

Well before we get stuck into that, it’s worth catching up a little with some action from the first day of the KRA Cup Mile meeting at Busan this afternoon. Three weeks ago, American trainer Joe Murphy scored his first ever Korean winner after several months of trying. Today he got his second. And it was a big one as 17/1 shot Udeumji took out the afternoon’s feature race by a length and a half from odds-on favourite Winning Perfect.

Murphy has thirteen horses in his barn at the moment. Udeumji is one of two who compete at class 1 level – the other being Isidore Farm’s Ganghan Yeoja, formerly trained by fellow foreigner Peter Wolsley. Speaking of foreigners, Japanese pair Toshio Uchida and Yoshi Aoki both scored victories in the saddle today. Aoki won race 8 on Isidae Yeongung while Uchida took race 7 on US gelding Viva Ace (Macho Uno); the three-year old now has four wins from his seven starts, finishing second on the other three occasions.

Back to the matter in hand. Gyongmaman’s picks actually made a little profit last week – and to clarify, it was the picks that made the profit, not Gyongmaman as he had long since left the track by the time Victory Camp scored an unlikely third place at long odds in race 13 to push us well into positive territory.

This Saturday sees just eleven races at Seoul – there are three pony races simulcasted from Jeju compared to the usual two. Again we’ll mostly look for value and recommend a small win bet (2000 won) and a larger place bet (4000 won). However, look at the tote board as the place may be a bit of a waste of time on some of them:

Race 1: Haengbok Party (8)
Race 2: Value Pride (3)
Race 3: Daeseongcheonha (8)
Race 4: Kkumuichukje (7)
Race 5: Pyeongchangolympic (9)
Race 6: Prete Ingran (6)
Race 7: Songdoteukgeup (12)
Race 8: I ppeun Jit (10)
Race 9: Taewangseong (2)
Race 10: Baekjeonmupae (3)
Race 11: Baekbongnyeong (6)

Value Pride and Baekjeonmupae will most likely be odds-on while Gyongmaman always bets on Pyeongchangolympic in support of Pyeongchang City’s rather touching continual bids to host the Winter Olympic Games (and, Yu Na notwithstanding, the next disappointment is due in less than 100 days). Likewise he finds himself betting on Songdoteukgeup as he has become intimately acquainted with Songdo – “The Dubai of Korea” (without the racing) – recently. Scientific handicapping this isn’t.

Remember it’s the KRA Cup Mile, the first leg of the 2011 Korean Triple Crown Challenge Series this Sunday at Busan. Here’s what’s happening when and where for the rest of the weekend:

Saturday April 2

Seoul Race Park: 11 races from 11:10 to 17:30
Jeju Race Park: 9 races from 12:30 to 17:20

Sunday April 3

Seoul Race Park: 11 races from 11:10 to 18:10
Busan Race Park: 6 races from 12:30 to 17:10