Month: October 2012

Tough Win Leaves It Too Late As Sing Sing Cat Pounces On KRA Cup Classic

Grand Prix Champion suffers rare defeat at Seoul while filly Pureun Energy wins Busan Juvenile Prize

Tough Win was given far too much to do in the home straight as Sing Sing Cat ran away with the KRA Cup Classic on a gorgeous autumn afternoon at Seoul Race Park today.

SIng Sing Cat and Lee Sang Hyeok in the KRA Cup Classic winner’s circle

Grand Prix champion, number one horse in Korea and long odds-on favourite, Tough Win (Yonaguska) was, as has been normal in his recent races, sent straight to the back of the field. Meanwhile Ace Galloper (Chapel Royal), winner of this race last year, made the running with Sing Sing Cat (D’Wildcat) close behind.

Generally Tough Win quickens at the end of the back straight, this time, however, jockey Cho Kyoung Ho didn’t ask the five-year old to begin improving his position until they came off the final corner meaning he had to go right around the field to get a run. While he made up 11 places and more than 25 lengths in the home straight, Sing Sing Cat was travelling too well to be caught and held on to win by a length.

Three-year old Nolbu Manse also managed to resist Tough Win, although had the race been a few metres longer – or had the favourite been asked to improve a little earlier – things could well have been very different.

Sing Sing Cat [D’Wildcat-Freddy Fenter (Fenter)], a four-year old colt, moves on to 9 wins from 20 starts and puts himself right into contention for the season ending Grand Prix in December. Tough Win will no doubt be back that day although different tactics will be needed if he is to avoid another ignominious defeat.

KRA Cup Classic (KOR G3) – Seoul Race Park – 2000M – Sunday October 21

1. Sing Sing Cat (USA) [D’Wildcat – Freddy Fenter (Fenter)] – Lee Sang Hyeok – 8.3, 1.8
2. Nolbu Manse (USA) [Simon Pure – Reason To Fear (Kris S)] – Ham Wan Sik – 1.6
3. Tough Win (USA) [Yonaguska – Maggie May’s Sword (Sword Dance)] – Cho Kyoung Ho – 1.1
Distances: 1 length/0.75 lengths – 14 ran

Down at Busan, the first of the year-end Juvenile championship races got underway in the form of the Gyeongnam Sinmun Cup. And there was a surprise as 14/1 shour Pureun Energy (Menifee), one of only two fillies in the race scored a narrow victory.

Last year’s winner Gyeongbudaero went on to win one Classic and finish second in another. Pureun Energy may or may not live up to that, however, in the short-term, she has won herself a spot in the Breeders’ Cup at Seoul next month where she will race for overall champion juvenile honours.

Gyeongnam Sinmun Cup – Busan Race Park – 1200M – October 21

1. Pureun Energy (KOR) [Menifee – Cheongsan Ilho (Nediym)] – Lim Sung Sil – 14.0, 3.0
2. Yapung (KOR) [Menifee – Wild Life (Wild Again)] – Park Geum Man – 2.7
3. Fantastic Jazz (KOR) [Menifee – Sorority Jazz (Dixieland Band)] – Kim Yong Geun – 1.3
Distances: Head / 1 length – 10 ran

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Weekend Preview: Tough Win Headlines KRA Cup Classic While Top Juveniles Face Off At Busan

Tough Win, Jumong, Haedongcheonwang in Cup Classic / Gyeongnam Sinmun Cup at Busan

It’s a big weekend of Stakes action in Seoul as Seoul’s best horses compete against one another in the KRA Cup Classic, while down at Busan, the end of season Juvenile championship races get underway in the shape of the Gyeongnam Sinmun Cup.

Tough Win heads the KRA Cup Classic (KRA)

In the Classic, current Grand Prix Stakes champion Tough Win will face arguably his two greatest rivals – at least from Seoul. He saw off both Jumong and Haedongcheonwang when the three of them met under handicap conditions in early September and, while the three-year old Haedongcheonwang can be expected to show improvement, an on-form Tough Win should still have too much for both of them again.

With the outstanding Smarty Moonhak’s career still hanging in the balance as he undergoes stem-cell treatment for tendonitis, his sire, Smarty Jones is represented in the Classic after all as four-year old Es Four, newly graduated to Class 1, takes his chance with the best.

Here is a full run-down of the runners and riders, with pedigree, age and race records:

KRA Cup Classic (KOR G3) – Seoul Race Park – 2000M – Sunday October 21, 16:20

1. Captain Cugat (AUS) [King Cugat – Shiva Angel (Marauding)] 8 (42/5/6/1) – Kim Ok SUng
2. Cheonnyeon Dolpung (NZ) [Sakura Seeking – Firenza (Val D’Arno)] 6 (24/2/5/2) – Lee Gi Woong
3. Tough Win (USA) [Yonaguska – Maggie May’s Sword (Sword Dance)] 5 (23/18/2/0) – Cho Kyoung Ho
4. Es Four (USA) [Smarty Jones – Golden Honor (Mr. Prospector)] 4 (21/4/2/3) – Yukio Abe
5. Gippeun Sesang (CAN) [Behrens – Bellus (Saint Ballado)] 6 (50/4/4/4) – Choi Bum Hyun
6. Sing Sing Cat (USA) [D’Wildcat – Freddy Fenter (Fenter)] 4 (19/8/3/1) – Lee Sang Hyeok
7. American Revival (USA) [Put It Back – American Saint (Saint Ballado)] 4 (28/3/3/1) – Jung Pyeong Soo
8. Berongi (USA) [Action This Day – Hot Match (Mr. Prospector)] 3 (12/3/4/0) – Lee Dong Kug
9. Ace Galloper (KOR) [Chapel Royal – Explicitly (Exploit)] 5 (27/17/6/1) – Shin Hyoung Chul
10. Tiger Wing (USA) [Repent – Tiger’s Missy (Tiger Ridge)] 4 (20/4/1/3) – Jamg Chuyoul
11. Haedongcheonwang (USA) [West Acre – Sienna’s Honor (Honor Grades)] 3 (9/6/3/0) – Park Tae Jong
12. Jumong (USA) [Johar – Foreign Aid (Danzig)] 5 (32/9/7/6) – Jo In Kwen
13. Nolbu Manse (USA) [Simon Pure – Reason To Fear (Kris S)] 3 (14/5/2/3) – Ham Wan Sik
14. Moby D (USA) [Unbridled Energy – Southern Breeze (General Royal)] 4 (9/2/3/1) – Lee Gi Hweoi

Meanwhile at Busan, the track’s top juveniles meet for the first time in the Gyeongnam Sinmun Cup. The best performers will qualify for the Korean Breeders’ Cup at Seoul next month when they will face the top two-year olds from the capital.

Last year’s winner Gyeongbudaero didn’t go on to win the Breeders’ Cup but he did train on as a three-year old, winning the KRA Cup Mile, the first leg of the Triple Crownn in April, and coming third in the final leg, the Minister’s Cup, just last week.

Menifee, who is streets ahead in the leading sire race this year, accounts for five of the ten entries. Fantastic Jazz, a half-brother of 2008 Korean Derby winner Ebony Storm (who, now a gelding, and still running at the top-level will be running a race later) goes into the race unbeaten from three starts.

Here are the runners and riders with pedigrees and race records. As per Triple Crown rules, all are Korean bred:

Gyeongnam Sinmun Cup – Busan Race Park – 1200M – October 21, 15:50

1. Rising Joy [Forest Camp – Joy Ride (Future Quest)] (4/1/2/0) – Jo Sung Gon
2. Long Speed [Commendable – Speed Bag (Abaginine)] (3/1/1/0) – Lee Hee Cheon
3. Choesin Mujeok [Forest Camp – Geumseong (Psychobabble)] (2/2/0/0) – Kim Young Min
4. Yapung [Menifee – Wild Life (Wild Again)] (4/2/1/0) – Park Geum Man
5. Pureun Energy (filly) [Menifee – Cheongsan Ilho (Nediym)] (3/1/2/0) – Lim Sung Sil
6. Fantastic Jazz [Menifee – Sorority Jazz (Dixieland Band)] (3/3/0/0) – Kim Yong Geun
7. Jeongsang Jeongbok [Menifee – Benbane Head (Giant’s Causeway)] (5/2/0/1) – Song Keong Yun
8. Gangjaui Miso [Volponi – Watch Me Raw (Encosta De Lago)] (2/1/0/1) – You Hyun Myung
9. Global Gangja [Pico Central – Gosokcheol (Big Sur)] (4/3/0/0) – Choi Si Dae
10. Miss Quick [Menifee – Regal Heir (Regal Intention)] (2/1/0/0) – Kanichiro Fujii

It’s going to be a busy weekend. Here’s what’s happening when and where:

Friday October 19

Busan Race Park: 11 races from 11:50 to 18:00
Jeju Race Park: 9 races from 13:45 to 17:40

Saturday October 20

Seoul Race Park: 12 races from 11:00 to 17:45
Jeju Race Park: 9 races from 12:20 to 17:10

Sunday October 21

Seoul Race Park: 11 races from 11:00 to 18:00 including the KRA Cup Classic at 16:20
Busan Race Park: 6 races from 12:15 to 16:45 including the Gyeongnam Sinmun Cup at 15:50

Stallion Social Charter Has Passed Away

Social Charter [Nureyev-Aunt Pearl (Seattle Slew)], who started his racing career in the UK before moving on to Canada and the USA has died at stud in South Korea aged 17.

Social Charter

As a racehorse, in 1999 he won two Group 3 race, the Eclipse Handicap at Woodbine and the Fayette Breeders’ Cup at Keeneland.

He was imported to Korea in October 2000 and was consistantly in the top 15 leading General sires for the next decade.

His progeny was known for being tough and durable and, while he didn’t sire any major race winners, he was responsible for a large number who had long careers with Southpaw, Natural Guy and Bada Jewang among his chief money-earners.

Still standing at the KRA Jeju Stud Farm, he passed away of an unspecified illness in late September.

Another Perfect Moment For Jigeum I Sungan

Derby Winner Beats Oaks And Cup Mile Winners To Land Third Leg Of Triple Crown

Jigeum I Sungan secured the final leg of the Korean Triple Crown in emphatic fashion at Seoul Race Park this afternoon and in doing so, assured himself of the title of Champion three-year old of 2012.

Their moment: Jigeum I Sungan and Moon Se Young return after winning the Minister’s Cup

The Korean Derby winner beat out the Oaks winning filly Rising Glory and KRA Cup mile winning colt Gyeongbudaero to win the Minister’s Cup by four lengths and become the first horse since the Triple Crown winning J.S.Hold in 2007 to win both the Derby and the Minister’s Cup.

Sent off as the 2/1 favourite, Jigeum I Sungan – “This is the Moment” in English – was kept in the middle of the pack for the first half of the 10 furlong race. Jockey Moon Se Young asked the Derby winner to improve around the home turn and as the entered the home straight, all the big contenders were massing.

Jigeum I Sungan and Moon Se Young in the winner’s circle

Gyeongbudaero was on the inside under Joe Fujii and Nobel Pokpung, a fast finishing second in the Derby looked poised to strike under Gerrit Schlechter on the outside.

They had nothing on Jigeum I Sungan though who accelerated away for an untroubled win. Oaks winner Rising Glory finished fast down the outside to grab second place, a neck in front of Gyeongbudaero.

So things ended as they should. The Derby winner finishing first, the Oaks winner second and the KRA Cup Mile winner third. Today, however, Jigeum I Sungan was best in all departments.

Further clashes look likely and it will be fascinating to see if he is ready to take on the likes of Dangdae Bulpae in the President’s Cup in a month’s time. Even with the weight advantage that he’ll have, it may be a little too early.

For jockey Moon Se Young, it was another golden day following his win in the Singapore Turf Club Trophy yesterday. It was his second Minister’s Cup, having won the 2004 edition on Mupae Gangja.

Jigeum I Sungan is the first Seoul-based horse to win the Minister’s Cup since J.S. Hold in 2007. Gaeson Janggun in 2008, Namdo Jeap in 2009, Dangdae Bulpae in 2010 and Dongseo Jeongbeol in 2011 were all trained at Busan.

Jigeum I Sungan is the first of his until now unfashonable Japanese bred sire Ingrandire (White Muzzle) to become a big star on the track. Ingrandire was imported to Korea in 2006. The winner’s dam, Solmaru (Mujaazif) finished third in the Korean Oaks in 2003. Her four previous foals all went onto win.

The 2007 edition turned out to be J.S. Hold’s last race. Jigeum I Sungan isn’t in his class just yet, but on today’s evidence, he’s going to be a lot of fun to watch in future.

Minister of FAFF Stakes (KOR G2) – Seoul Race Park – 2000M – Sunday October 14, 2012

1. Jigeum I Sungan (KOR) [Ingrandire – Solmaru (Mujaazif)] – Moon Se Young – 2.9, 1.3
2. Rising Glory (KOR) [Menifee – Straight Cash (Straight Man)] – Jo Sung Gon – 4.3
3. Gyeongbudaero (KOR) [Menifee – Princess Lanique (Cherokee Run)] – Kanichiro Fujii – 1.5

Distances: 4 lengths/Neck
Also ran: 4. Naejangsan 5. Wonderful Namhae 6. Fine Fine 7. Nobel Pokpung 8. Myeongun Jewang 9. Royal Galloper 10. Alpha Myeongjang 11. Chowon Yeoje 12. Tongjesa 13. Himchan Jilju 14. Gumanseok

Canadian Filly Dangdae Jeonseung Wins Singapore Turf Club Trophy

Dangdae Jeonseung cruised to a comfortble victory in the Singapore Turf Club Trophy At Seoul Race Park this afternoon.

Dangdae Jeonseung stands tall after the Singapore Turf Club Trophy

Always well-placed, the Canadian bred filly reeled in and overtook favourite and long-time leader Chowonuibyeol in the home straight to win, going away, by a length and a half at the end of the 7 furlong race, which was the second time Singapore’s racing authority has sponsored a race in Korea.

It was only Dangdae Jeonseung’s fourth career win, however, she rewarded punters who had kept enough faith with her to back her into second favourite, despite disappointing recent showings in the KNN and YTN Cups. She hadn’t run since but the two months off clearly benefitted her and it will be interesting to see how she performs next time.

Foaled in Canada but purchased out of a US sale, Dangdae Jeonseung is one of very few Canadian bred racehorses in Korea. Another one, Sufficientevidence (Pleasant Tap), was also a winner at Seoul today. The two-year old colt broke his maiden in race 6.

Singapore Turf Club Trophy – Seoul Race Park – 1400M – October 13, 2012

1. Dangdae Jeonseung (CAN) [Put It Back – Diamond-Heirloom (Pembroke)] – Moon Se Young – 2.5, 1.4
2. Chowonuibyeol (USA) [Rockport Harbor – Arctic’s Angel (Artax)] – Choi Bum Hyun – 1.4
3. Dashing Platinum (USA) [Macho Uno – Forbidden Kiss (Touch Gold)] – Yoo Seung Wan – 3.3
Distances: 1.5 lengths / 2.5 lengths
Also Ran: 4. Big Power (USA) 5. Xicar (AUS) 6. Indian Cherokee (USA) 7. Raonjena (USA) 8. Winner Trophy (USA) 9. Baekduachim (USA) 10. New Terracan (USA) 11. Fortunata (USA) 12. A Wanted Affair (USA) 13. Golden Socks (USA) 14. Yongsan Hwangnyong (USA)

Dangdae Jeonseung was one of three winners today for Moon Se Young and the champion jockey will be looking to make a quick return to the winner’s circle tomorrow when he partners Korean Derby winner Jigeum I Sungan in the Minister’s Cup, the final leg of the 2012 Korean Triple Crown.

Sunday October 13:

Seoul Race Park: 11 races from 11:00 to 17:55 including the Minister’s cup at 16:15
Busan Race Park: 6 races from 12:15 to 16:40

Weekend Preview: 2012 K-Triple Crown Concludes With Minister’s Cup

Cup Mile, Derby And Oaks Winners Set To Clash

Even though there are only two tracks, it’s not easy to win a Triple Crown in Korea and there isn’t one on the line as a full field of fourteen line-up for the final three-year old Classic of the season, the Minister’s Cup at Seoul Racecourse this Sunday.

Jigeum I Sungan in the Korean Derby winner’s circle

The winners of all three Classics run so far this year will be there. Gyeongbudaero, who won the KRA Cup Mile (the Korean 2000 Guineas) way back in April will be joined in the starting gate by Derby winner Jigeum I Sungan and Oaks victress Rising Glory. However, these three will be up against a number of new challengers who weren’t ready for the early season classics but have been coming into form since.

It is a big weekend of racing on the peninsula with Seoul playing host on Saturday to the Singapore Turf Club Trophy.

Here is a full run down of the runners and riders for Sunday’s big race, along with pedigrees and race records (Starts/1st/2nd/3rd):

Minister of FAFF Stakes (KOR G2) – Seoul Race Park – 2000M – Sunday October 14, 2012, 16:15

1. Chowon Yeoje [Forest Camp – Navigation (Big Sur)] (11/3/3/3) – Lee Sang Hyeok (Seoul)
One of only two fillies in the race, she didn’t start showing her quality until this summer and finished second to Yeouiju in the Donga Ilbo Stakes three weeks ago. Will need to find plenty more to win here but the extra furlong could suit.

2. Wonderful Namhae [Vicar – Make That Call (Glow)] (12/7/1/0) – Narazaki Kosuke (Busan)
BOunced back from a disappointing ninth in the Cup Mile to have a good summer. Finished ahead of some good horses when running second in a class 1 handicap last time out.

3. Gumanseok [Vicar – Perfect Storm (Didyme)] (7/3/3/1) – Park Tae Jong (Seoul)
Broke his maiden in April and lightly raced since. Likely to be one of the outsiders but has never finished out of the placings and appears to be improving with each run.

4. Myeongun Jewang [Forest Camp – Fully Approved (With Approval)] (7/3/3/1) – Gu Young Jun (Busan)
The most expensive horse of his crop at the two-year old sales last year, he was comfortably beaten by stablemate Fine Fine last time out. However, that was at 1400M, He;s never been tested around two turns so is something of an unknown quantity but has plenty of talent.

5. Naejangsan [Menifee Miss Merit (Old Trieste)] (7/4/3/0) – Kim Hae Sun (Seoul)
Hasn’t competed at higher than class 3 although was a comfortable winner last time out. Distance should suit but he won’t be one of the favourites.

6. Alpha Myeongjang [Pico Central – Lend (Coronado’s Quest)] – Song Keong Yun (Busan)
A Class 1 winner on his last start, he has a lot of quality. However, while he has won a class 4 race at 1500M, he looks a pure sprinter and may struggle to get the distance here.

7. Royal Galloper [Commendable – Explicitly (Exploit)] (12/3/2/2) – Shin Hyung Chul (Seoul)
Inconsistent and yet to win at higher than class 4. While he will most likely appreciate the distance, it would be a surprise if he was to rectify that here.

8. Rising Glory [Menifee – Straight Cash (Straight Man)] (9/4/3/1) – Jo Sung Gon (Busan)
The Korean Oaks winner hasn’t run since her victory in the fillies’ classic in August. However, Union rules prevent jockeys who are riding at Seoul on a Sunday from riding at Busan on a Friday and it is unlike Jo Sung Gon to give up the prospect of a lucrative weekend at home unless he thought he had a chance.

9. Gyeongbudaero [Menifee – Princess Lanique (Cherokee Run)] (13/5/3/3) – Joe Fujii (Busan)
Hasn’t won since the KRA Cup Mile in April. He was third in the Derby and a very creditable second behind five-year old multiple STakes winner – and winner of thsi race two years ago – Dangdae Bulpae, in the Busan Owners’ Cup last month. If he repeats that form, he has to be taken seriously. Should benefit from Joe Fujii being in the saddle.

10. Fine Fine [Forest Camp – Dream Fantasy (Manlove)] (13/6/2/0) – Lim Sung Sil (Busan)
An interesting one. Although he has recently been running in sprints, he has a victory over 1800M to his name and should be capable of competing here. A placing chance at possibly good odds.

11. Jigeum I Sungan [Ingrandire – Solmaru (Mujaazif)] (13/5/5/1) – Moon Se Young (Seoul)
The Derby winner won at the distance in a class 1 handicap last time out and that could be enough to make him favourite here. That was only his second start since the Derby so he shouldn’t be burned out and he has every chance of winning his second Classic.

12. Himchan Jilju [Kwaedo Nanma – Wild Triple (Military)] (14/6/0/1) – Chae Gyu Jun (Busan)
The only horse in the race by a Korean born sire (although all the others are Korean bred), he was fourth behind Dangdae Bulpae and Gyeongbudaero in the Busan Owners’ Cup. Outside chance of a place.

13. Tongjesa [Creek Cat – Namdoui Gangja (Greenwood Lake)] (9/6/0/2) – Oh Kyoung Hoan (Seoul)
Roared into form this summer and comes into the race on a run of five consecutive wins. He’ll have to find a little bit more to win here but he has every chance of doing so.

14. Nobel Pokpung [Didyme – Shar Baby (Talinum)] (11/4/3/2) – Gerrit Schlechter (Busan)
An unexpected second in the Korean Derby, he may have won had the race been an extra furlong. He’s got that extra furlong and, while he was well-beaten by talented US import Smoking Gun in his last start, he should relish this company. South African Gerrit Schlechter rides at Seoul for the first time since winning the International Jockey Challenge in 2007. He’s ridden Nobel Pokpung just once before and they won.

The Minister’s Cup is the highlight of a busy weekend of racing in Korea. Here’s what’s happening when and where:

Friday October 12

Busan Race Park: 11 races from 11:50 to 18:00
Jeju Race Park: 9 races from 13:45 to 17:40

Saturday April 13

Seoul Race Park: 12 races from 11:00 to 17:40 including the Singapore Turf Club Trophy at 16:40
Jeju Race Park: 9 races from 12:20 to 17:20

Sunday April 14

Seoul Race Park: 11 races from 11:00 to 17:55 including the Minister’s Cup at 16:15.
Busan Race Park: 6 races from 12:15 to 16:40

Seungniuihamseong Steals The Governor’s Cup

13/1 chance Seungniuihamseong produced a fine late run to win the Gyeonggi Governor’s Cup, one of the top races of the autumn for Korean bred fillies and mares, at Seoul Race Park yesterday.

The four-year old overcame leader Golden Rose in the final strides to take the prize with odds-on favourite Cheonun only managing third.

Gyeonggi Governor’s Stakes – Seoul Race Park – 2000M (fillies & mares only – October 7, 2012

1. Seungniuihamseong (KOR) [VIcar – Hug And Kiss (Commander In Chief)]- Cho Kyoung Ho – 13.0, 2.6
2. Golden Rose (KOR) [Buster’s Daydream – Pop’s Apple (Digangi’s Grinder)] – Ham Wan Sik – 3.1
3. Cheonun (KOR) [Ft. Stockton – Restless Patricia (Born Restless)] – Jang Chu Yeol – 1.1
Distances: 0.5 lengths/1.75 lengths – 10 ran