Dangdae Bulpae Stuns Smarty Moonhak, Tough Win in Busan Metropolitan

Dangdae Bulpae (Biwa Shinseiki), the two-time President’s Cup winner, stunned favourites Smarty Moonhak (Smarty Jones) and Tough Win (Yonaguska), to win the Busan Metropolitan City Mayor’s Cup on a hot and humid night under the floodlights at Busan Race Park this evening.

Smarty Moonhak ran second but Tough Win was a disappointing fourth.

Busan Metropolitan City Mayor’s Cup (K.G3) – Busan Race Park – 2000M – July 22, 2012

1. Dangdae Bulpae (KOR) [Biwa Shinseiki – Indeed My Dear (Alydeed)] – Jo Sung Gon – 9.7, 1.7
2. Smarty Moonhak (USA) [Smarty Jones – Madeira M’Dear (Black Tie Affair)] – Park Tae Jong – 1.1
3. Jumong (USA) [Johar – Foreign Aid (Danzig)] – Ham Wan Sik – 5.1

Distances: 2 lengths / 0.5 lengths
Also Ran: 4. Tough Win (USA) 5. Smoking Gun (USA) 6. Jeonseong Sidae (AUS) 7. Sangseung Geotap (USA) 8. Yeonseung Daero (KOR) 9. Lion Santa (USA) 10. Cheonjidolpung (USA) 11. Adam One (USA) PU. Ghost Whisper (KOR)

Punters sent off Smarty Moonhak as the 1/2 favourite with Tough Win second in the betting market at 3/1 against. Dangdae Bulpae was the next fancied at 9/1.

It was Dangdae Bulpae who was quickest out of the gate, jockey Jo Sung Gon harrying him over to the rail and into the lead heading into the first corner. Smarty Moonhak went with him. A year ago it was Tough Win who followed Dangdae Bulpae into the corner and the two began racing each other far too early and ended up taking themselves out of the race.

This time they settled into a much more sensible – bordering on the slow – pace as they entered the back straight. It was then that things got interesting. As expected, Cho Kyoung Ho asked Tough Win to improve his position and as he did so, everyone else tried too. Entering the home straight, Dangdae Bulpae still had the lead with Smarty Moonhak on the rail and Tough Win coming down the centre.

In the penultimate furlong Cho on Tough Win made his move and looked set to go past everyone. On the rail, Park Tae Jong did likewise on Smarty Moonhak. But Dangdae Bulpae was not for catching. Tough Win’s challenge stalled in the final furlong and he couldn’t improve his position while Smarty Moonhak, while faster than the winner just couldn’t make up the ground, Jumong finishing quickly to split the two favourites.

Jo Sung Gon reacts as Dangdae Bulpae crosses the finish line (Pic: Newsis)

It was a 15th career win for five-year old Korean bred Dangdae Bulpae, and his 7th Stakes victory, a Korean record. While everyone knew he could beat the best Korean bred horses, today for the first time, he beat the imported ones too. Dangdae Bulpae is now a true champion.

Tough Win doesn’t like Busan. He won narrowly two years ago and was badly beaten last year. How much his bleeding attack in his last outing took of him is still unclear but he wasn’t at his best today.

Then there is Smarty Moonhak. He ran well but, when chased after by his jockey for the first time in his career, he couldn’t quite do it. He was well placed in the home straight but surprisingly was found wanting. He will come back to Seoul and will be aimed at the season ending Grand Prix.

So is Smarty Moonhak not as good as we thought or is Dangdae Bulpae better than we thought? Maybe both but a few months ago, most observers had Smarty Moonhak gradually improving throughout the year before winning the Grand Prix in December.

He is ahead of schedule in that regard and is only three years old which in Korea, unlike in other parts of the world where the breeding shed is more important than the racecourse, is still very young. He has a long career ahead of him. With that in mind it is better for us, as fans of Korean racing to celebrate a great performance by an excellent Korean bred horse, Dangdae Bulpae.

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6 comments

  1. obviously smarty moonhak has a lot of potential but i got a feeling that they pushing him a bit too quick….they will burn him out…..putting him against the best far too soon and often…the horse might need a time to fully muture and get seasoned…..dongdae bulpae is a tough seasoned galloper and used his 3 kilo advantage to the best…well deserved winner….

  2. Good point about the weight, though he was carrying exactly the same as Smarty Moonhak who got the allowance for being a three-year-old. He definitely deserved the win. Good ride by Jo Sung Gon too.

    I’m not sure about Smarty Moonhak burning out, this was only his second hard race and he was carrying only 55kg which is much less than he’ll be carrying in the handicaps at Seoul. The problem is going to be finding races for him, they don’t want him to have to carry too much but that just leaves the big races open.

    Either way, hopefully they’ll take care of him.

  3. you are right about finding the suitable races….it’s limited here in korea not a lot of options…..only 2 hard races yes but started when he was 2 years old (even not stretched out)….i think it was early

  4. Hi Kathleen, yes it was, I am not sure why I didn’t post that result as I remember the race well. It was won for the second year in a row by High Point (Silent Warrior). Here is the full result:

    SBS Cup – Seoul Race Park – 1900M – July 22, 2012

    1. High Point (KOR) [Silent Warrior – Fran’s Express (Expressman)] – Jun Duck Yong
    2. Magnifique (KOR) [Menifee – Miss Beauty (Miswaki)] – Moon Se Young
    3. Cheonun (KOR) [Ft. Stockton – Resltess Patricia (Born Restless)] – Jang Chu Youl

    Distances: 2 lengths/1.5 lengths – 14 ran

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