K-Triple Crown 2014: KRA Cup Mile Full Preview

The Triple Crown is upon us. We’ve a long slog ahead with 6 months between the first leg and final legs. We begin at Busan Race Park this coming Sunday with the KRA Cup Mile – the Korean 2000 Guineas.

Cheongnyong Bisang stands to attention after becoming champion juvenile. He'll have plenty of supporters in the KRA Cup Mile

Cheongnyong Bisang stands to attention after becoming champion juvenile. He’ll have plenty of supporters in the KRA Cup Mile

A full field of 16 will line up for the big race – 7 of them fillies. It looks extremely open and hard to call. Here’s a run-down of the runners and riders:

KRA Cup Mile (KOR G2) – Busan Race Park – 1600M – Sunday April 6, 2014

1. Classic Cat [One Cool Cat – Deoksugung (Cherokee Run)] (6/3/1/0) – Park Hyun Woo (Seoul)
Faded badly in the final furlong of his last start which was his first try at 7 furlongs. Prior to that he’d recorded some very dominant wins and with plenty of speed, if he runs back to that form he could do feature at the buiness end of the race. Doing it at Busan is a big ask though.

2. Yeonggwanguichampion [Menifee – Manwang (Road Of War)] (7/4/1/1) – Lim Sung Sil (Busan)
Lim Sung Sil has been to be on in Stakes races recently although he’s not riding for trainer Kim Young Kwan this time. Finished 2nd on his only start over the distance to date. He’s a front-runner and will need to have come on since then if he is to hold on here. A chance.

3. Cheongnyong Bisang [Volponi – Miss Alwuhush (Alwuhush)] (7/4/0/0) – Seo Seung Un (Seoul)
Last year’s Champion Juvenile found himself exposed last time out against class 2 opposition. That was over 1800M and he already has a win at 1700M to his name. With the exception of his Breeders’ Cup, his wins have come from the front and he is going to face a lot of competition up there. If he can stay on in the long and tough Busan home straight, he’ll be among the contenders.

4. Pureun Geotap [Menifee – Charmin Strike (Smart Strike)] Filly (9/2/2/3) Lee Chan Ho (Seoul)
The filly was 3rd in the Breeders’ Cup and has gone on to show she can handle an extended trip, with a class 4 win over 1800M. She was hanging on a bit in a slowly run race but should appreciate the drop down to 1600M.

5. Gangchi [Volponi – Regal Heir (Regal Intention)] (9/3/1/1) – Darryll Holland (Busan)
Bart Rice saddles his first Korean Classic runner. Gangchi was a sharp-looking winner over 1300M last time out. Expect to see him just off the lead and if anyone can coax the best out of him, it’s Darryll Holland.

6. Nubi Queen [Menifee – Dream Runner (Our Poetic Prince)] Filly (9/3/1/2) – Oh Kyoung Hoan (Seoul)
Another who has won over 1800M at Seoul, Nubi Queen could only manage 6th when facing a lot of these rivals in the Breeders’ Cup last December and although she’s clearly gone on since, whether she has the pace to match them at the business end of the race is open to question.

7. Winner’s Marine [Volponi – Graceful Ballerina (Posse)] Filly (5/5/0/0) – You Hyun Myung (Busan)
The only unbeaten runner coming into the race, she’s going to have to work very hard to still be unbeaten come the end of Sunday afternoon though. She’s never tried further than 1300M and hasn’t beaten anything special but she is undeniably quick and jockey You Hyun Myung has been in sensational form of late.

8. Raon Morris [Yankee Victor – Thunder By Night (Thunder Gulch)] (6/3/1/1) – Moon Se Young (Seoul)
Seoul’s champion 2-year-old of last year has only made one competitive start in 2014, finishing 3rd over 1700M in January. He has race-trialed twice since though and Seoul’s top jockey Moon Se Young has seen fit to make the journey South – a tip in itself. On his day, he has the fastest sprint and must be respected.

9. Jungang Gongju [Menifee – Command And Hope (Commands)] Filly (7/2/2/0) – Choi Si Dae (Busan)
Winner of Busan’s biggest 2-year-old race last year, she’s been deeply unimpressive in her three starts since. Likes to come from off the pace with a very fast final three furlongs, if she runs to her best, she can win especially if the front-runners burn themselves out. However, she’s not been doing that lately, disappointing punters who’ve backed her into short odds each time. They won’t this time.

10. Queen’s Blade [Menifee – Harboring (Boston Harbor)] Filly (7/4/3/0) – Kim Yong Geun (Busan)
A Kim Young Kwan trained horse must always be in contention in a big race and his filly cones into this race with the most impressive recent form, winning a class 2 race over this distance. She’ll need to go quicker than she did that day to win this but she has the pace and the pedigree to excel here – she’s half-sister to 2008 Oaks winner Jeolho Chance – and could be hard to beat.

11. Gilbert [Yankee Victor – Wonderful Wanda (Fusaichi Pegasus)] (5/3/1/0) – Kim Dong Young (Busan)
One of the bigger colts in the race, Gilbert looks like a sprinter and so far has only run once over 6 furlongs – he finished 8th. Kim Dong Young, who won this race last year on Sting Ray, will be his 5th jockey in 6 races. He’s quick but others are quicker.

12. Namdo Trio [Didyme – Tapas (Sky Classic)] (9/2/4/0) – Kanichiro Fujii (Busan)
A very encouraging run over the distance in March and Joe Fujii on his back are two things that Namdo Trio has in his favour. Likes to close from just off the pace, he should find one or two quicker here but the Fujii-factor will mean he has his backers.

13. Power Champion [Perfect Champion – Perfect Vision (Psychobabble)] (8/4/1/0) – Jo In Kwen (Seoul)
Enters the race in great form, having won his past 4 starts and with Jo In Kwen on board, he’ll have plenty of support from punters. It’s his first try at this distance which could be a concern but he will be among the favourites.

14. Cupid Girl [Vicar – Sheza Hot Dish (Rubiano)] Filly (8/4/0/1) – Park Byung Yun (Seoul)
Another who comes into the race on a winning streak, her’s currently stands at 3, her most recent coming over 1800M. The distance therefore isn’t a concern and she has won both from the front and from off the pace. Should be a good price with an unfashionable jockey on board but likely to find a few too quick here though.

15. Hwanggeumbitjijung [Menifee – Firstclasscat (Catienus)] Filly (6/4/0/1) – Masakazu Tanaka (Busan)
Got squeezed out in a very tight four-way finish over 1500M last time out and the fact that she was passed by 3 class 3 horses in the final few strides of that race is a worry. If she can stay the distance, she should have plenty of speed in store.

16. Royal Impact [Cielo Gold – Skeemo (Meadowlake)] (7/2/0/3) – Song Keong Yun (Busan)
A closer who could well appreciate stepping up a further half-furlong than he’s run before. Although he comes in looking in good form, he hasn’t beaten very much and only has one start at class 3 to his name so he’ll be one of the outsiders. Bet him if you think the pace-setters will sprint each other out the race.

The KRA Cup Mile is race 5 of a 6-race program at Busan on Sunday. The race will also be broadcast live to Seoul Racecourse for simulcast betting.


  1. Seems to me it’s one of the toughest races ive ever met recent race days.
    Because most of all horses are now under developping..
    Another reason why this race seems so difficult is there are buncha early speeds..
    Let’s take a look at their start furlong times.
    This means there will be certain type of cut throat competitions in the front pack.
    Then who is the real figher among the earlies?
    Can’t say for sure…because they are all under developping 3year olders…
    So now that there are buncha earlies , my views enevitably turning to the closers and deep closers…
    Here are closers and deep closers’s late speed
    #12:14.9-38.5-13.3(Namdo Trio;only this horse has experienced heavy track
    and finished 2nd which means he got the strong stamina)

    Among them…personally i like strong late speed horse
    #12 NamdoTrio(jockey Fujii)
    and secondly #11Gilbert(jockey Kimdongyoung)..and #4(Leechanho)

    I’d like to go with the#12 as a key (again…im not a win or exacta bettor… so not necessarily means win or exacta win

  2. i ll stand out 10 for the multiples…kim young kwan’s horses always grow an extra leg when it comes to big races and she’s the only one won at class 2 and at the distance…
    for value number 9 run sub12secs 5 or starts ago…if there is a hot pace she might eat the ground in the final furlong…..but i ll try to find out if she had any injury causing her losing her form lately.

  3. First of all,before I go further..
    and before do some postmortem,I’d like to thank to my teachers…
    Sartin,Bradshaw,Brohamer,specially great mathmatics proffessor Quirin.
    Although Ive never met them personally I’ll consider them my teachers forever…
    They enlighten my views on horse race.
    Before i knew them i was just one of the desperate suckers who can’t
    tell the real contenders..
    They taught me “Do not see the forest for the trees”
    which means we gonna analyze the race, our primary concerns should understand the race dynamics.
    That is to predict how this race will unfold?
    What sorta pace will unfold..?
    Eventually,who will get the edge?

    That is the core thing to do.

  4. i hope thomas you added number 3 in your tickets…..you were great to find out 12 and 11….

    dont know why but i thought number 3’s win in the breeders was a fluke and can’t repeat that performance in busan….altough i got 1 unit quinella place 11-12 (thanks for your tips) and profited 54.000 won so upset about leaving number 3 altough he’ve already beat them in the last years juvenile championship (breeders cup they call it i think)…11-12 running quinella /exacta would have been my biggest win in korean horse racing…..number 10 disapointed me….focusing on busan nags only was my big mistake.

    1. I tell you why i did’t mention 10.
      That horse is..”.she”….people call…filly.
      and as i mentioned before frontrunners always vulnerable when they
      meet other frontrunners….this is the race dynamics
      They always fight for the lead and burn themselves….out due to hot pace battle.
      Filly should be 4 YO IF she really to be fully competitive..

      You have much to learn.
      And i tell you the truth .
      Every. Industry has it’s own dark side of the moon.
      If you intentionally believe what you want to belive in horse race.
      Your horse racing life eventually gonna be miserable.
      95%races are for real….90%Races can decipher by the handicapping theory and skill..you’d better stick with that90%.

  5. thomas tell me something that i don’t know…believe me i can differentiate a filly and colt and when the fillies get better of the colts. i don’t make my living from horseracing but so far from being miserable…..actually you didn’t answer my question did you pick number 3 as well…if you did good on ya…..

    1. Of course..i played. 3
      his breeder win also i got it.
      At that time..trio payoffs was 1500.
      But that’s not the point.that’s the secondary.
      On top of that im not the big money bettor rather say small money to the big odds…type.because retired couple of years ago.
      The most important thing is always trying to be accurate.
      Always trying to be cool…this is very tough job to to
      So you ‘ll understand this game is a sorta mental game..like to solve the difficult 3dimensional puzzle.

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