Biwa Shinseiki, sire of three-time President’s Cup winner Dangdae Bulpae, has died aged 18. The Japanese-bred stallion was standing privately in Korea. Eagle Cafe, winner of the NHK Mile in 2000 and Japan Cup Dirt in 2002, also passed away on Jeju Island in September.
Bred by Hayata Farms, Biwa Shinseiki [Forty Niner – Oceana (Northern Dancer)] was a very good racehorse in Japan landing 10 wins, 7 places and 8 shows from a total of 33 starts in a career lasting from 2001 until 2004. Those wins included two big Stakes races as well as five consecutive victories between May and December in 2002.
That winning streak came to an end when he was 2nd in that year’s Tokyo Daishoten at Ohi, a race in which he would finish 3rd in 2003. Also in 2003, he was 2nd in the February Stakes, one of the few Grade 1 races in Japan to be run on dirt. Usually run over a mile at Tokyo Racecourse, in 2003 it was held at Nakayama over 1800M.
Due to its dirt and its distance, the February Stakes is a popular race among Korean breeders with past winners Meisei Opera (1999), Admire Don (2004) and most recently Testa Matta (2012) all going on to stand at stud in Korea. Following a racing career in which he earned in excess of 370 Million Japanese Yen, Biwa Shinseiki was purchased by Korean interests in 2005 to stand at Pureun Farm.
For a privately standing sire, he got plenty of mares but it was in his very first season at Stud, in 2006, when he covered the Alydeed mare Indeed My Dear. She had produced some very average racehorses beforehand but the resulting foal would become one of the best horses Korea has seen.
Dangdae Bulpae would win 19 of his 32 races between 2009 and 2013. He was quite a late-developer as a three-year-old only managing 3rd in the 2010 Korean Derby but he won the final leg of the Triple Crown, the Minister’s Cup, in October and a month later returned to Seoul the following month to claim Korea’s joint-richest race, the President’s Cup, something he would go on to do for the following two years.
Dangdae Bulpae’s exploits helped Biwa Shinseiki to 8th place on the Leading Sire list on 2010, to 10th in 2011 and 12th in 2012. None of his other foals would be anything like as good although he produced many winners even if few made it up to class 1 level. Biwa Shinseiki died on September 28. Cause of death is yet to be officially confirmed.
Also passing away in September was Nokwon Farm’s Eagle Cafe (Gulch), another horse who raced in Japan. He was the winner of just five races, however, they included the NHK Mile Cup at Tokyo in 2000 and then in 2002, the Japan Cup Dirt (now known as the Champion’s Cup) under Frankie Dettori.
Eagle Cafe [Gulch – Net Dancer (Nureyev)] was bred in the US but trained in Japan. He also raced in Dubai and France. He came to Korea to stand at Nokwon – a farm with close Japanese ties – in 2011 but covered few mares and was to all intents and purposes retired in 2014. His gelding Honey Butter Nino is the first Korea-based horse in training for Japanese owner Shigeo Kadono. Eagle Cafe died from colic aged 19 on September 30.
Clean Up Joy today showed why he’s the highest-rated horse at Seoul with an easy win in the KRA Cup Classic on a rainy afternoon in the Korean capital.
Jockey Ham Wan Sik departed from his normal tactics on Clean Up Joy and despite 5-year-old leaping rather awkwardly out of the gate opted to push forward to join the early leaders. On a wet track, it paid off handsomely. Clean Up Joy hit the front as the field entered the home straight and ran on to win by a comfortable seven-lengths on the line.
Clean Up Joy (Purge) was recording his 10th win on what was his 20th career start. He was 3rd behind Bold Kings in last year’s Grand Prix Stakes and 4th in this summer’s Busan Mayor’s Cup, beaten only by Beolmaui Kkum, Triple Nine and Success Story. Despite a reverse at the hands of Winning Andy – who also tried his luck here – when conceding 8kg in August, he fully vindicated punters who sent him off at long odds-on today.
Running 2nd was the ever-reliable Unbeatable (Eddington) while long-shot Cheonjeok (Shakespeare) got up for a very creditable 3rd place.
Clean Up Joy was a $14,000 purchase from the OBS two-year-old sale in Florida in June 2013. He’s now won in excess of $800,000 in prize-money.
KRA Cup Classic (KOR G2) – Seoul Racecourse – 2000M – October 16, 2016
1. Clean Up Joy (USA) [Purge – Greta’s Joy (Joyeaux Danseur)] – Ham Wan Sik – 1.3, 1.1
2. Unbeatable (USA) [Eddington – Baxter Hall (Rahy)] – Song Jae Chul – 3.2
3. Cheonjeok (USA) [Shakespeare – Celtic Song (Giant’s Causeway)]
Distances: 7 lengths / 3 lengths
Also Ran: 4. Clean Up Cheonha (USA) 5. Dynamic Jilju (USA) 6. Bichui Wangja (USA) 7. Areumdaundonghaeng (USA) 8. Winning Andy (USA) 9. Chief Red Can (USA) 10. Damyang Chukje (USA)
KRA Cup Classic day has dawned overcast in Seoul. Ten runners will go to post this afternoon for the 400 Million Won race with Clean Up Joy, 4th in this summer’s Busan Mayor’s Cup likely to be the favourite.
The KRA Cup Classic is the highlight of an 11 race card at Seoul which runs from 10:40 to 18:00. There are also 6 races at Busan from 12:50 to 17:05. English racecards are here. Notes on the three Sky Racing races, including the Classic are below:
Race 8: Class 4 (1700M) Handicap: Horses which are imported to Korea have to start at class 4 whereas those bred domestically can begin at class 6. Therefore Korea-bred horses who have made it up to this level are generally proven winners. That’s the case with (4) SUBAEKYANG, who has a 2nd and a 3rd from her last two and is favoured to score here with a late run. On speed will be (2) GYODUBO and (11) FLY WING. Both have won at this distance already and they look the main dangers. Also on speed early should be (1) KKUMUI CLUB who tries this distance for the first time and can go well. Also attempting the 1700M for the first time is (7) WANGUI DAERO, who is yet to score in eleven but has often come close and can beat plenty of these.
Selections: 4, 2, 11, 1
Next Best: 7, 6, 12, 3
Rating: 12, 2=4, 11, 7
Fast Starters: 2, 9, 11, 12
Start-200M: 12, 10, 1, 9, 11
200M-Finish: 12, 2, 7, 4, 1
Race 9: Class Open – The KRA Cup Classic (KOR G2) (2000M) Weight for Age: Big prize money on offer here and (9) CLEAN UP JOY is favoured to take it home. He’s the top-rated horse at Seoul and won his first three races this year before refistering a by no-means disgraced 4th place in a very tough Mayor’s Cup at Busan in July. On his return to the capital in August he was somewhat surprisingly beaten by (6) WINNING ANDY over 1400M but he was giving 8kg away and should overturn that under weight for age today. Clean Up Joy is expected to drop right to the back of the field early and then close strongly. His stablemate (2) CLEAN UP CHEONHA is two races into a comeback following a lengthy spell. Neither suited and he is expected to improve today. (3) BICHUI WANGJA was a gate to wire winner over this distance in July and while he disappointed, he should get an uncontested lead here and can be considered to stay all the way. (1) DYNAMIC JILJU, an also-ran in the Korea Cup last month and (10) CHIEF RED CAN, winner of this race in 2015, are others to be respected.
Selections: 9, 3, 1, 2
Next Best: 6, 1, 7, 5, 8, 4
Rating: 9, 2, 1, 10, 5
Fast Starters: 3
Start-200M: 2, 3, 5, 1, 9
200M-Finish: 9, 6, 5, 2, 4
Race 10: Class 3 (1400M) Handicap: Competitive race to finish with. (4) GAIA THUNDER looks to be the pick, having been a class and distance winner in August before going on to beat four of his rivals here when running 2nd over 1700M a month ago. He’ll settle just behind any early leaders and has a strong finish. (3) CHOWONUI CHANGA was 4th in that race, just under a length behind (10) MIRACLE CAT – who was over-performing – and will be a danger today. (11) GEUMGANGJEGUK was a surprise winner over 1200M on August 27th beating (1) LAST CODIE and (9) BEST ROAD. All three of them find themselves up in class here and Last Codie especially, with three wins from five outings to date, looks set to overturn that form today.
Selections: 4, 1, 3, 9
Next Best: 2, 7, 11, 10
Rating: 4, 2, 5, 11, 7
Fast Starters: 1, 2, 6, 7
Start-200M: 1, 9, 6, 2, 7
200M-Finish: 4, 10, 3, 11, 9
Down in Australia on Saturday, only two showed up to face the phenom that is Winx. Korean Triple Crown winner Power Blade didn’t quite command that amount of respect on his return to his home track of Busan on Sunday but he came close with only four rivals venturing out against him – one of them a stablemate – in the Kookje Sinmun Cup.
In fairness, this has never been hugely supported race, despite its hefty prize money – boosted even further this year – but the whole day was very much billed as the Power Blade celebration day. This would be the first time the Busan-trained colt had races at his home track since winning the first jewel of the Triple Crown, the KRA Cup Mile, all the way back in April.
Since then, Power Blade has gone on to romp both the Derby and the Minister’s Cup, becoming the first horse to sweep the K-Triple Crown in its current format and then, despite looking as flat as a pancake in the build-up, registered a hugely creditable 4th place in the Korea Cup at Seoul last month.
A jaunt around seven furlongs at Busan was never going to be too taxing but Power Blade’s neighbour from a few boxes down in Kim Young Kwan’s barn is an interesting talent himself. As a juvenile, Seoul Bullet was part of the KRA’s “maybe the horse isn’t the problem” program, which involved sending Korean-bred horses overseas for early training and racing. He went to Florida where he actually managed to get claimed out of a race at Gulfstream Park (the KRA claimed him back the next time he was entered) and recorded one 3rd from 4 outings.
On his return from Korea Seoul Bullet joined some of the other returnees in proving that no, the Korean-bred horse isn’t the problem, winning 6 out 6 starts, including the 2015 Gold Circle Trophy ahead of a young Macheon Bolt, before injury intervened. He would be off for more than a year and finally returned in inauspicious fashion in August.
Today was expected to be better for Seoul Bullet. It was. Under Seo Seung Un, he hot the front three furlongs out to get first run in the straight. Kim Yong Geun quickly brought Power Blade alongside and for a moment the battle was joined. Power Blade quickly got the best of it and Kim’s whip use was sparing, the Triple Crown winner always in command but only winning by half a length on the line.
So Seoul Bullet is back as a force in the Busan ranks but Power Blade retains his star status. A good day all round. A journey back to Seoul for the President’s Cup next month is possible but his stable has an embarrassment of riches for that race including Triple Nine, who bested Power Blade to finish 3rd in the Korea Cup. By virtue of their in-the-money finishes in the Cup, both Power Blade and Triple Nine can receive international ratings enabling them to be considered for the Dubai World Cup Carnival and there is no denying it would be wonderful to see a fit Korean Triple Crown winner lining up at Meydan in the New Year.
For now though, Power Blade is back home.
While at Busan, Power Blade is the main attraction on Sunday, there’s a big card at Seoul too with 11 races from 10:40 to 18:00
English racecards can be found here. Notes on all Seoul races below:
|Rating||Top five official rated|
|Fast Starters||Expected to lead the race early|
|Start-200M||Fastest average time for the first 200M (up to 6 most recent races)|
|200M-Finish||Fastest average time for the final 200M (up to 6 most recent races)|
Race 1: Class 6 / 1200M / Allowance / KRW 60 Million / 10:40
(8) CLEAN UP SKY was 3rd in the valuable HKJC Trophy on September 10th and would probably have won had he not been one of two who shifted outwards abruptly away from the whip in the closing stages, losing a lot of ground. The other who did that was a winner last week and in Korea, Clean Up Sky will be odds-on to follow suit here. Next best is (3) YEOKDAE CHOESANG who closed strongly for 2nd last start and will appreciate the extra furlong today. (5) RULE OF SUM was an encouraging 5th on debut in August and can come on here while (4) PHILLANIKE and (12) JEULGEOUN HAMSEONG are perhaps best of the rest although (11) MEGA CHAMP won his trial and will have some backing.
|Selections||(8) Clean Up Sky (3) Yeokdae Choesang (5) Rule Of Sum (12) Jeulgeoun Hamseong|
|Next Best||11, 4, 9|
|Fast Starters||4, 6, 8|
|Start-200M||8, 4, 12, 2, 3|
|200M-Finish||5, 3, 12, 7, 9|
Race 2: Class 6 / 1300M / Allowance / KRW 20 Million / 11:05
The market will be slightly more balanced in this one with all except (5) HALO TIME likely to have at least some support. (2) QUEEN PRINCESS and (7) EUNBIT NARAE recorded 3rd places at 1200M and 1300M respectively in August and while both struggled on reappearance last month, they can return to some semblance of form here. It’s similar for (1) GANGJASEUNG, the most experienced one in the race, who failed to follow up on an August 2nd place. (3) YEONGUNG GEONMA’s best I three outings so far came at this distance and will benefit from the services of Djordje Perovic, while (6) GOLDIE EARTH finally showed some improvement in a weak race last month and carries the lightest weight here.
|Selections||(3) Yeongung Geonma (2) Queen Princess (1) Gangjaseung (6) Goldie Earth|
|Next Best||7, 4|
|Start-200M||3, 2, 4, 6, 7|
|200M-Finish||5, 3, 1, 7, 2|
Race 3: Class 5 / 1000M / Handicap / KRW 40 Million / 11:30
Another competitive race. Slight pick and likely favourite is (6) MABEOP TANHWAN, a class and distance winner on September 3rd when not fancied at all. He came from just behind the early leaders that day and beat (5) GALKKOTBI in 3rd by almost two lengths. This race isn’t significantly stronger although (2) DONGHAE VICAR and (3) KING LIGHT, both of whom struggled on their first try at this class and both should welcome the step down in trip today. That’s true too of (10) GANGNAMGUL while (8) JEOMIPGASOK returns for the first time since May and looked lively enough in a trial last month.
|Selections||(6) Mabeop Tanhwan (3) King Light (2) Donghae Vicar (10) Gangnamgul|
|Next Best||8, 1, 5|
|Rating||3=10, 6, 1=2|
|Fast Starters||2, 3, 10|
|Start-200M||7, 3, 10, 2, 6|
|200M-Finish||8, 6, 4, 1, 9|
Race 4: Class 5 / 1300M / Handicap / KRW 40 Million / 12:10
After back to back 3rd places in all-filly races at this class and distance and prior to that a solid 2nd at 1400M, (11) BEST QUEEN looks ready to win again here. She’s usually steadily away so the outside gate shouldn’t be an issue. Finding one too quick once more may be an issue though and if that happens, the most likely is (8) NEULPUREUN KOKO. She was a well-beaten 2nd at this distance a month ago but is a winner at this distance and will be on speed early. (9) YONGDUSAN showed tentative signs of a return to form with a 4th place at class and distance in August and can go well here too while (6) EIGER and the oddly named (1) VET TIME look best of the rest.
|Selections||(11) Best Queen (8) Neulpureun Koko (9) Yongdusan (6) Eiger|
|Next Best||1, 10|
|Rating||5, 11, 7, 8, 6|
|Fast Starters||5, 8|
|Start-200M||8, 5, 1, 9, 6|
|200M-Finish||11, 3, 1, 2, 6|
Race 5: Class 4 / 1200M / Handicap / KRW 60 Million / 13:15
Another competitive race and we’ll make (1) LAKE LOUISE, 3rd on her first try at this level on September 11th, the pick to score. She led until the closing stages that day and with half a furlong less to worry about today, can go all the way this time. (6) SUN MASTER was 5th, a length and a half behind Lake Louise that day and can go closer here. (7) LA FENICE was a winner at this class over 1000M last month and while that seems to be his ideal distance, he should be able to be competitive at 1200M and will challenge for the lead early. (4) SILVER HERO is up in class having won two of his first three outings and is to be considered while (8) SO ARA YEOWANG drops back to this distance for the first time since beating Lake Louise over it in July. Trainer and jockey combination is bang in form right now.
|Selections||(1) Lake Louise (4) Silver Hero (6) Sun Master (8) So Ara Yeowang|
|Next Best||6, 2|
|Rating||2, 7, 5, 1, 8|
|Fast Starters||1, 3, 7|
|Start-200M||7, 3, 1, 5, 6|
|200M-Finish||9, 5, 8, 2, 4|
Race 6: Class 4 / 1400M / Handicap / KRW 60 Million / 14:05
Since beginning his career with a pair of wins, (11) SIDAEUIYEOWANG has never finished any worse than 4th but has always managed to find at least one too quick. He can put that right today. The main danger looks to be the up in class (6) GWACHEONUI HAMSEONG who’s won two from four and attempts 1400M for the first time. He’s likely to try to make all while Sidaeuiyeowang will be ridden more patiently. Also on speed will be (8) EOJJUGURI, who should be close at the end although the distance may be a slight concern. (2) PRETTY BOY and the up in class (10) DIXIE SMILE, who landed his 2nd win at the 26th time of asking last month, are others in contention.
|Selections||(11) Sidaeuiyeowang (6) Gwacheonui Hamseong (8) Eojjuguri (10) Dixie Smile|
|Next Best||2, 5, 12|
|Rating||11, 3, 1, 8, 2|
|Fast Starters||4, 5, 6, 8|
|Start-200M||5, 11, 8, 4, 6|
|200M-Finish||6, 9, 2, 12, 10|
Race 7: Class 4 / 1400M / Handicap / KRW 60 Million / 14:55
There are three stand-outs here in a very average looking race and among them (5) NEW CITADEL, 2nd on debut over 1300M on August 27th, is favoured to take the honours. (7) BANYA DONGHAENG was an encouraging 5th on debut last month and can build on it here while (1) GOOD TO YOU is yet to win in eighteen outings but beat three of these when running 3rd over this distance last start in August and should beat plenty again. It’s slim pickings beyond those so well give a chance to debut-maker (8) HWAGANG, who was 2nd in a trial just last week and also to (12) USEUNG GONGGAM who has a strong of recent 4th places that he should be looking to match or better in this company.
|Selections||(5) New Citadel (7) Banya Donghaeng (1) Good To You (8) Hwagang|
|Next Best||12, 3|
|Rating||5, 3=7=8, 1|
|Fast Starters||3, 5|
|Start-200M||3, 5, 10, 6, 7|
|200M-Finish||7, 5, 1, 12, 2|
Race 8: Class 3 / 1400M / Handicap / KRW 75 Million / 15:45
(4) SPIRIT OF HANSEN has been 2nd on each of his three outings so far and he should be close by once more. It’s possible though that he might have to settle for 2nd – or worse – as he finds himself up in class today in what is a competitive race. (9) DAEBAKIDA and (5) HWANGGEUM DEULPAN have both shown they can be contenders at this level and should go close while (2) DAEMA JIJON has already won at class and distance and can be dangerous. (10) EUNBIT HWANHUI has won two of her last three and is accordingly up in class here. She tries the distance for the first time and it should suit.
|Selections||(4) Spirit Of Hansen (9) Daebakida (10) Eunbit Hwanhui (5) Hwanggeum Deulpan|
|Next Best||2, 6, 3|
|Rating||3, 12, 1=2=5|
|Fast Starters||1, 2, 11|
|Start-200M||1, 3, 4, 11, 2|
|200M-Finish||6, 10, 4, 2, 9|
Race 9: Class 3 / 1700M / Handicap / KRW 75 Million / 16:40
Both (1) CHEONHABI and (7) IGWANGSASEOK enter here having won their last two starts, the latest for each of them being at this class and accordingly both must be respected here. We’re going to make (2) SIMBA the pick though. His two latest defeats have been in tougher company than this and he looks very nicely in here. (8) LITTLE BROWN was 2nd, just over a length behind Igwangsaseok, at class and distance on August 28th and can go close again while (6) VALLEY STAR, last behind Cheonhabi last time out, can improve today.
|Selections||(2) Simba (1) Cheonhabi (7) Igwangsaseok (8) Little Brown|
|Next Best||6, 3|
|Fast Starters||1, 8|
|Start-200M||8, 1, 7, 2, 4|
|200M-Finish||3, 1, 2, 7, 8|
Race 10: Class 1 / 1800M / Handicap / KRW 110 Million / 17:30
Seven of these raced each other at class and distance on August 28th and it was old-stager (8) GUMANSEOK who surprisingly got the best of them. He hasn’t been respected by punters in either of his last two races but has defied his odds both times to finish 2nd. He’ll be much shorter today. (1) SPACE PORT was just a neck behind Gumanseok in that race and may well start favourite here but the other likely fancies here didn’t go that day. (12) BRIG returned to form with a solid 2nd place over 2000M at the beginning of September and should be strong here while (9) MENI MONEY was 3rd over this distance in June’s SLTC Trophy and enters in good form. (10) HALLA CHUKJE, who will most likely set the early pace and (7) WOLRD JJANG are others to look out for.
|Selections||(12) Brig (1) Space Port (8) Gumanseok (9) Meni Money|
|Next Best||10, 7, 2|
|Rating||1, 3, 4, 10, 2|
|Fast Starters||3, 4, 10|
|Start-200M||3, 1, 7, 9, 6|
|200M-Finish||7, 2, 10, 8, 5|
Race 11: Class 2 / 1200M / Handicap / KRW 90 Million / 18:00
Two who are up in class look to be the ones to beat in the finale. (1) MENI MUSIC and (3) SNOW CHARISMA were class 3 winners at the start of September over 1200M and 1400M respectively, both of them making all and they will fight it out early in the race with one of them having the potential to go all the way. (4) SINGGEUREOUNBOM and (8) CUPID CHONGAL, have the best chance of stopping them with (10) KEUNBADA a longer shot in what is another competitive race.
|Selections||(3) Snow Charisma (1) Meni Music (4) Singgeureounbom (8) Cupid Chongal|
|Next Best||10, 11,|
|Rating||10, 1, 8, 2, 11|
|Fast Starters||1, 3|
|Start-200M||10, 4, 3, 8, 12|
|200M-Finish||1, 12, 2, 7, 6|