It’s been an absolutely stunning week on the peninsula. Temperatures have been in the low twenties, the sun has been shining and the cherry blossoms have finally come out. Naturally as soon as the working week is done, it’s set to pour with rain on Saturday and Sunday. Hopefully that rain won’t put too much of a dampener on what is a double-header of big race action at Seoul Race Park this weekend.
On Saturday, it’s the Selangor Turf Club Trophy while Sunday sees the Group 3 Seoul Owners’ Association Trophy.
The STC Trophy is the latest edition of the exchange race that the KRA holds in partnership with Malaysia’s Selangor Turf Club. Two apprentice riders have joined the usual dignitaries in making the trip to Seoul this week and will ride in the race which sees fourteen class 2 Korean bred runners compete over 9 furlongs.
The main event of the weekend, however, is on Sunday. The Owners’ Trophy also has a full field of fourteen and is headed by former Ttukseom Cup winner Triple Seven (The Groom Is Red). Ilgan Sports Cup winner Geuma Champ (Vicar) makes his first appearance since finishing third in last year’s Minister’s Cup while in-form Real Victor (Biwa Shinseiki) and Suseong TX (Concept Win) also go along with the always dangerous Magnifique (Menifee) and Cheonun (Ft. Stockton). It is set to be an intriguing race.
Once the Owners’ Cup is done, Grand Prix champion Tough Win (Yonaguska) will make his second appearance of 2012. He’ll be carrying an unprecedented 63.5kg against eleven rivals in a 1900 metre handicap.
Down at Busan there are co-feature races on Sunday. Double President’s Cup winner Dangdae Bulpae (Biwa Shinseiki) is the star attraction.
Of the foreign jockeys at Busan, Gerrit Schlechter has eleven rides across the weekend, Narazaki Kosuke has twelve and Yukio Abe fourteen, which may be some kind of record for foreign jockeys in Korea. Here’s what’s happening when and where:
Friday April 20
Busan Race Park: 10 races from 12:00 to 18:00
Jeju Race Park: 9 races from 13:30 to 17:30
Saturday April 21
Seoul Race Park: 12 races from 11:00 to 17:40 including the Selangor Turf Club Trophy at 16:40
Jeju Race Park: 9 races from 12:20 to 17:20
Sunday April 22
Seoul Race Park: 10 races from 11:00 to 17:45 including the Owners’ Association Trophy at 16:15
Busan Race Park: 6 races from 12:15 to 16:45