Ttukseom Cup – Full Preview

It’s the biggest race of the season so far as the Queen’s Tour gets underway in the shape of the Ttukseom Cup at Seoul this Sunday.

Joy Lucky heads the Ttukseom Cup field (Pic: KRA)

Joy Lucky heads the Ttukseom Cup field (Pic: KRA)

While Fly Top Queen misses the race due to coming down with colic, 13 will line up for the 7-furlong test which is the first in a three-race series to determine the nation’s top filly or mare.

Chief among them is Joy Lucky, 2nd in the final leg of the Tour last yea, but she has plenty to do if she’s going to get this year’s campaign off to a winning start with 2012 Grand Prix Stakes winner Gamdonguibada among those out to stop her.

It’s quite a puzzle. Here’s a full run-down of the field:

The Ttukseom Cup (KOR G3) – Seoul Race Park – 1400M – March 16, 2014

1. Indian Blue (USA) [Henny Hughes – Gambler’s Passion (Prospector’s Gamble)] 4 (14/4/3/4) – Ikuyasu Kurakane
4th in the Grand Prix Stakes last December over 2300 metres, she dropped down to this distance to pull off a victory over Japan/Korea Challenge winner Watts Village last month. With good late speed, she is one of those best placed to take on Joy Lucky in the closing stages.

2. Gamdonguibada (USA) [Werblin – Radyla (Country Pine) 5 (17/9/3/3) – Lim Sung Sil (Busan)
The 2012 Grand Prix Stakes Champion drops down to 7 furlongs for the first time since finishing 2nd in this race a full two years ago. She had an indifferent 2013 but finished 2nd on her season debut in January. She’s race-trialed over 5 furlongs twice since then and must be considered one of the favourites.

3. Star Bolt (USA) [Fusaichi Pegasus – D’Oro Doll (Touch Gold)] 4 (16/3/5/0) – Park Geum Man
Has a great turn of pace as shown when she finished 2nd in the GCTC Trophy, having been 10th inside the home-straight. Has a tendency to leave herself just a little too much to do but drops down to 1400 metres for the first time in a year – the last time she tried this distance, she led from gate to wire – albeit against greatly inferior opposition

4. Xicar (AUS) [Written Tycoon – Grand Jewel (Brocco)] 5 (24/4/3/1) – Jang Chu Youl
Very promising when she first came onto the scene, Xicar has suffered a number of injury setbacks. She finally made her class 1 debut last month and finished a very good 3rd over this distance. It would be a big surprise if she could improve on that here but has an outside chance of matching it.

5. My Day (KOR) [Touch Gold – Smart Advice (Smart Strike)] 4 (18/8/3/1) – Ham Wan Sik
A three-time winner at class 1, this diminutive looking filly has to be given respect. Dropping down to this distance for the first time in over a year, she is one who could cause problems at the business end of the race.

6. Joy Lucky (KOR) [Vicar – Proper Gun (Prosper Fager)] 4 (11/8/1/0) – Seo Seung Un
The favourite and for good reason. If she runs to her potential it is hard to see her getting beaten. Second to Secret Whisper in the final leg of the Queen’s Tour last year in Busan, she has an excellent chance of going one better this time.

7. Seungbu Sinhwa (USA) [Bluegrass Cat – Island Rhythm (Skip Trial)] 4 (18/0/3/4) – Kim Ok Sung
Has never won a race. And won’t win this one. Shes not usually far off and has taken home a paycheck from 12 of her 18 starts but, never having run at a higher level than class 3, she’ll be hard pushed to do that here.

8. Sun Blade (NZ) [Coat’s Choice – Wella (Zabeel) 3 (8/4/1/1) – Kim Yong Geun
Trainer Kim Young Kwan usually brings two up for the big races and Sun Blade looks like his 2nd-string here after Gamdonguibada. However, while she is untried at this level, she is quick and has plenty of potential as well as a 2 kilo advantage on the rest. Could be seen toward the front early and jockey Kim Yong Geun is in very good form after returning from a lengthy suspension.

9. Grand Teukgeup (KOR) [Menifee – Saratoga Campaign (Mt. Livermore)] 5 (26/9/4/2) – Jeong Dong Cheol (Busan)
Regular jockey Darryll Holland has stayed back in Busan so Jeong Dong Cheol gets his chance on last year’s runner-up. She likes to be up with the pace and won handily over a class 1 field at this distance in January but was disappointing in the Busan Ilbo Cup last up which causes concern here. Can’t be ruled out but the question is whether she is fast enough to go past the likes of Joy Lucky in the final furlong. On form, she’s not.

10. Heba (USA) [Peace Rules – Sue’s Temper (Temperence Hill)] 4 (19/6/4/1) – Masakazu Tanaka (Busan)
Burst onto the class 1 scene with a pair of wins at the turn of the year including over Gamdonguibada – albeit with a 9kg weight advantage. She drops down to a distance that she’s never won at but if the favourites fail to perform, she could be one to take advantage.

11. Shining Future (KOR) [Silver Train – Juliet’s Kiss (Kissin Kris)] 5 (23/4/3/2) – Kim Do Hyun (Busan)
Closed well to win over this distance in late December and was just beaten a nose last time out after also coming from off the pace. Likely to find the front-runners too quick and too resilient for her to repeat the feat here.

12. Kalma (USA) [Dehere – Leeward Passage (Captain Bodgit)] 5 (18/4/1/3) – Yang Young Nam (Busan)
That she has joined the stable of Bart Rice, who has had a great start to his training career at Busan, is the only thing in Kalma’s favour here. The South African trainer has won with 4 of his 18 starters to date but it would be a huge surprise if Kalma provided the fifth here.

13. Jangmi Eondeok (USA) [Midnight Lute – Sea Gift (A.P. Indy)] 4 (10/3/4/1) – Moon Se Young
Really struggled on her class 1 debut last month and she will appreciate the drop down in distance. Likely to be seen towards the front of the field, she’ll not be favourite but with moon Se Young up, she’ll not be without her backers and is not without a chance of placing.


  1. Excellent view!
    I guess among the shippers who got the early speed
    will desperately trying to interrupt the JoyLucky’s frontrunning,then she has to fight from start to the mid stretch.
    If pace shape scenario going to be like this,
    what will happen to JoyLucky?
    Maybe then ,such like deep closer Indian and closer
    Gamdong will get the edge.
    Shippers average early speed have shown that they are more faster than they were in Busan.
    3-5 seconds..faster
    You know ,JoyLucky’s average start furlong time are
    between 13.3-13.5sec.
    But when she went to the Busan track,as a shipper,
    her start furlong shown above14…

    This race a bit tricky to me..
    I’d like to go with IndianBlue..trio key

  2. Here’s the match-up
    pace line 13.4-37.4-12.6 running line 1 1 1 1 final;1:25.3
    4c time:54.4. 4ftime(in american term 2ndcall)47.9

    Pace line 14.4-35.9-12.4 running line 9 9 7 3 final;1:25.6
    4c time:55.6. 4f(2ndcall):49.7

    looking at this, Joylucky got absolutely superior early
    but problems are ..this superior energy might be eclipsed by the shippers
    and again one more factor…track condition …slower than before?
    then we cannot sure for her winning…

  3. Sat.race 12th 7F. class1 12Horses race card:
    There was a fierce hot pace battle..all earlies fighting each other to get lead and finally,at the top of the stretch,
    all of them collapsed…then closer and deep closer came
    in the money..
    Pace:4F(2nd call)46.7 track was a bit slow 6….
    Got it.

  4. you know thomas seoul is a kinda downhill track while the busan opposite……this explains joy lucky sectionals down in busan……

    whenever they run mixed races i play my tickets around busan nags çause they have the wood on seoul horses quite often….

    as you said if joy lucky gets a soft lead it might be hard to run her down but if one of the front runners take her early and set a hot pace then swoopers come into play….kim young kwan’s second string horse may present some value….if they trot early indian blue’s chances to win is out of equation…. good luck…

    1. As matter of factly saying,
      I don’t understand what you are saying.
      I never said Indianblue gonna be the solid winner.
      I simply saying I ‘d like go with a trio key..
      Of course, i know well difference track configurations between seoul and
      buasn,that’s why there will be need some adjustment in start furlong time
      for shippers…
      In this race card there are couple of earlies…
      We don’t know yet what the real pace shape would unfold.
      I was saying it based on the charts;
      There will not be only one
      Joylucky 13.3(fastest) avg:13.4(1time)
      Sunblade13.4. avg:13.8(3times)
      Grand. 13.4. avg:13.4(3 “)
      Jangmi. 13.5. avg:13.5(1 “)
      Above horses gonna be the front pack.
      Paper forms are telling us that
      For Joylucky’s sake it’s not gonna be a loose lead..
      There may be some hyper pace pressure almost at the end of the race.
      And according to you it sounds like race will unfold faster than Indianblue
      could handle..right?
      Indianblue,her last outing’s pace was48.1(frontrunner Wattsvillage’s)
      She demonstrated that she can handles fast pace..
      Maybe this time she cannot….according to you
      By the way,
      Did you watch todays race 12 suicidal hot pace?4f 46.7
      All earlies collapsed.top3 finishers are closer and deep closers even came from dead last.

      And i might be wrong about Indianblue
      It just a gussworks
      My guesswork just based on their past performance and figures
      So i said i’d like go with Indianblue as a key…
      I’m a full time handicapper
      It means horseplaying is for a living.
      I don’t care who’s gonna be the winner.
      Because i ‘m doing only trio player.
      I simply need top three…
      That’s all…understood?
      And let ‘s wait and see…who’s gonna come in the money

  5. Race unfolded completely different.
    As a handicapper this made me frustrating.
    I was right on Indianblue.
    But i was wrong about frontrunner.
    It’s a shame..
    Luckyly my foreign friends could hit the trio.
    They simply followed my opinion..
    so. 50..something payoffs are their rewards..

    But to me’s an unhonorable….
    I didn’t play..
    It’s a shame….
    Shame is my rewards….
    Kim young kwan is a real tricky stratedigist..

  6. luckily i had exacta 2 units and one unit trifecta…but i really wished either number 10 or 9 run second….would have got better dividends…..todays track was good for strong finishers….simply indian blue gave too much start but still would have been hard to pin down the winner but cut down the margin…….day in day out joy lucky beats inferior opposition in seoul once she faces a decent opposition can’t handle the pressure i suppose….anyway good luck with your handicapping job…if you are making a living out of it good on ya and i really mean it…..unfortunately about 70 percent of the time the top ranked horses on timeform don’t win…there are too many variables to consider and i think that’s the muse of this game…i’m a small time player and i take racing as a recreational activity…if i was depending on it for living i had been starved to death ages ago…..

    1. Oh. .got it? Congrats…
      Usually i don’t trust typical frontrunners as much as they’ve shown in past performances.
      They’re not real fighters
      Whenever they face another a bit stronger frontrunners
      They easily give up the competing.
      Before race begins…
      I always check the horse’s weight change.
      Sunblade,Grand and heva lost their weight -29, -19, -20 each.
      Generally speaking,when earlies lose their weights
      They lose their earliy speed, on the other hand short closers(pace pressers) who got the tactical speed
      sometimes show improved performance ability.
      So i was quite sure this is not the spot for Sunblade.
      Couple of days ago,Alastair and me talked about
      who’s gonna be the real contenders …
      We could have narrow down ;Indianblue,Joylucky,Gamdong,Grand..
      But as i mentioned before i doubted about thisJoylucky.
      You know frontrunned fashion winning is always vulnerable when they meet another bit more stronger frontrunners..because that kinda simply steal the race not by fierce fighting..real stronger horses winning
      always earned by fighting…
      Upon by this reason ..i don’t trust much and i don’t rating
      much about Gamdong’s next outing.
      Her winning is stratedgic win.
      Another race ..anothe race dynamics…
      Let’s talk about this next Queen’s tour…

      1. And one more …i got no reason to differentiate between seoul and busan.. to me it’s just horses
        That kinda differentiation..none of my business.

  7. i believe training and racing regime makes difference…as we both said there are a lot of variables to be covered up and speaking from experience from australia tracks makes differences so seoul horses running mostly in seoul and busan horses doing their trade in busan is one important variable to consider for me……seoul races tend to favor more front runners and the ones on the pace on the other hand busan favors closers more than seoul. downhill, flat and undulating tracks leaves some traits on the horses……

  8. got me wrong.
    Simply i don’t use the regional name.
    Did you not notice that i use “shipper”instead of busan or seoul?
    I hate that kinda words
    That’s a bias.
    I got almost 20 different nationlties friends
    They are blacks,whites orientals..catholics,muslims,hinduists,shamanist,buddists, even voodoo..etc…
    I always trying to avoid any kinda biased words.
    To me there are only two kinda races which i can make money or not
    I’m not the owner nor the trainer,jockey
    No reason to have the pride to be the winner
    That,s not got to do with me.

    And next time you ‘d better prepare the figures
    not words …
    peoples will believe the maths.

  9. as i said numbers leads u to the winners only 30 percent of the time in this game in korea… astute punter a korean friend said to me and i highly esteem his local knowledge the most important thing in korean racing is intention….whether they try to win or not….unfortunately regardless of the numbers game a lot of runners just make the numbers but without giving their best shot to win….i’m not lost in the maze of numbers and after all any literate person can see them on face value since they are written all over the every form guide…if they really meant a lot the horses with the best numbers next to their names should have win most of the time but as i said it’s about only 30 percent roughly….better read between the lines and figure out some cheeky trainers intentions…..

    1. Well ive been doing this for 33years.
      I m come from school of Sartin-Bradshaw-Brohamer and Quirin
      Need more..?
      Let’s stop arguement.
      Next time how about you proceed the preview?

  10. my guess is you hanging in racecourse in seoul but i’m not a regular visitor…..i’m planning to visit it on derby day in may…it would be nice to meet and exchange few ideas…good luck till then….

    1. If you think you have something to prove for yourself to the public,
      then you’d better prepare the figures and the logic.
      People will judge by the results what you maintained
      Not by “hearsay,rumors,heard from grapevines.or according to
      heard from someone,
      abstract numbers ,statistics which you never know,understand, and experienced.

      This blog is for the public.
      For foreigners who have interested in korean horse racing.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s