Month: March 2018

Sunday Seoul & Busan: Race-By-Race Preview (April 1)

Sunday sees 11 races at Seoul from 10:45 to 18:00 and 6 races at Busan from 12:40 to 17:05. Here are the previews (Busan selections at bottom):


Race 1: Class 6 (1300M) Allowance / KRW 24 Million

(3) RAON SIRIUS looked to be making all over 1200M on February 25th, only to be comfortably overhauled by a good favourite and ending up in 2nd. Johan Victoire rode the winner that day and this time he can guide Raon Sirius to the front once more and potentially all the way. (6) GONG SAN was a promising enough 6th of 11 over this distance on debut a month ago and can come on for that here. Antonio Da Silva had a good March and he can get April off to a positive start on (2) KHENDUM POWER, who drops back in trip following a couple of decent efforts around 1700M while (9) BIG AURORA, who tries this trip for the first time, and (12) MIDAS CHIEF, who is one start into a comeback following nine months out, are others to consider.

Selections (3) Raon Sirius (6) Gong San (2) Khendum Power (12) Midas Chief
Next Best 10, 9
Fast Start 3, 7, 7

Race 2: Class 6 (1200M) Allowance / KRW 40 Million

After exceeding expectations with 3rd place on debut, (4) HANYANG GONGJU came up short when favourite on reappearance at 1300M on March 3rd. However, her 2nd place that day warrants another chance and she really should be getting it right this time. She’ll be strong favourite ahead of (5) O.K. DAY and (6) GARA GARA GA, both of whom have shown promise across two start each so far with the latter slightly favoured at this point. (3) LEADER’S CAMP didn’t disgrace herself when finishing 6th of 12 on debut at the end of February and may benefit from an additional furlong today while (11) GOLD STREET was an improved 4th when tried at further than the minimum for the first time on March 4th and can match or better that here.

Selections (4) Hanyang Gongju (3) Leader’s Camp (6) Gara Gara Ga (5) O.K. Day
Next Best 11, 7
Fast Start 3, 5, 7

Race 3: Class 5 (1200M) Handicap / KRW 40 Million

(6) HAMBAK MISO was sent off as the odds-on favourite on debut on March 3rd and duly obliged, winning comfortably over 1000M. He is up in class and distance today and should be competitive. He won’t be favourite, however, because (5) DOKDO JIGI returns for the first time since Christmas Eve. Dokdo Jigi was a fast winner on debut over 1000M before running 2nd to the very good Gaon Champ on reappearance in November. He was 5th of 8 in a very strong juvenile race on Christmas Eve before being diagnosed with a fetlock joint disease. Back now, if he is anything like he was before, he should win. (3) ROYAL BOKSUNI enters having run 3rd and 4th in her latest two and can be close again. (4) MONEY ZIF is up in class following a good win over 1300M a month ago and should figure at some point while (9) STRONG MAN has also shown ability at this class and should get close.

Selections (5) Dokdo Jigi (6) Hambak Miso (9) Strong Man (3) Royal Boksuni
Next Best 4, 2, 1
Fast Start 3, 5

Race 4: Class 5 (1000M) Handicap / KRW 40 Million

(2) THE QUEEN GRACE was a touch disappointing running 6th of 12 when second-favourite over the distance on February 25th. That wasn’t a bad race though and she already has a 2d place to her name at class and distance and can go one better here. Speaking of 2nd place finishes, that’s fast becoming (3) CHEONJI BOBAE’s specialty, (more…)

Seoul Saturday: Race-By-Race Preview (March 31)

There are 11 races at Seoul on Saturday from 10:45 to 18:00:

Race 1: Class 6 (1000M) Allowance / KRW 40 Million

Maiden race in which four of the twelve are racing for the very first time and among them, there are a couple with the potential to win first-up. Both (2) MAGIC ROAD and (12) MYEONGJIN MAN looked very competent in trials. Magic Road is out of a dam who won seven of her fourteen races in Korea while Myeongjin Man is a Drosselmeyer colt who was imported in-utero. We are, however, going to come down on the side of racecourse experience and (11) HIN BYEOL ran on very nicely for 3rd on debut at the end of February and can come out on top today. The debut-makers look to be the main danger while (3) BROWN ROSE debuted in a stiffer contest than this and should improve for it. (9) SURFING POINT was bad on debut three weeks ago but trialled up well before that and can improve today.

Selections (11) Hin Byeol (12) Myeongjin Man (2) Magic Road (9) Surfing Point
Next Best 3, 4
Fast Start 1, 3, 4, 8

Race 2: Class 5 (1000M) Handicap / KRW 40 Million

Hansen filly (11) GEOSEN MAPUNG got promoted to this level without a win but acquitted herself very nicely when finishing 3rd on February 25th at this distance with (5) GUREUM SONJITHAE some way back in 7th. She overcame gate 12 that day and can do similar again today. (4) CREMOA POWER is up in class following victory over 1300M all the way back in January. He’s had twelve weeks off since then and drops back to in trip but should be a threat. (7) DALDARI enters following 2nd and 3rd places in her two starts so far this year and may be considered while (12) HANIL MAGIC steps back in trip following two reasonably encouraging efforts at 1300M and can be in the placing frame.

Selections (11) Geosen Mapung (7) Daldari (4) Cremoa Power (12) Hanil Magic
Next Best 5, 3
Fast Start 1, 5, 6, 11

Race 3: Class 6 (1300M) Allowance / KRW 24 Million

Last weekend was a good one for David Breux and the French jockey can keep his winning form going here by riding (3) FLYING JOY to victory. The colt has been 3rd in each of his latest two and should be on the early speed here. (9) HADALRAE was an encouraging 4th on debut on March 3rd, making up a lot of ground in the closing stages. That was at 1000M and the step up in trip today should suit. (5) MORAN DONGBEAK has (more…)

Good Friday Busan: Race-By-Race Preview (March 30)

There are 10 Friday races at Busan from 11:30 to 18:00. Here is the full horse-by-horse and race-by-race guide:

Power Blade Owners

Jockey Franco Da Silva could be among the winners at Busan on Friday (Pic: KRA)

Race 1: Class 6 (1000M) Allowance / KRW 24 Million

1. GOLDUI INYEON – First-time starter. Trialed adequately and top jockey booking.
2. MUCHO – Won a trial at the end of December but offered little in two starts so far. Should be on pace early.
3. TANGO AND TANGO – Didn’t do much on debut but comes in off 2nd and 3rd in latest two and can match those today.
4. HARVEST GOLD – Last of 12 on debut three weeks ago. Not yet.
5. BUGYEONG STORY – Debut-maker. Trialed ok but won’t be favoured first-up.
6. HANGIL – Much improved 2nd on fourth start a month ago, just beaten half a length in all-filly contest and a leading contender here. Top Jockey.
7. BAENGNYEON DAERO – Solid 3rd on debut at this distance in January but struggled at 1300M last time. Should be better dropped back in trip today.
8. CHEONJI GOLD – Slow in both starts so far and hard to argue for here.
9. FASHION WANG – Showed a bit of improvement last time but still a way to go. Likely to be on early speed.
10. THE FACT – First-timer. Didn’t catch the eye when trialing.
11. ROYAL RIVER – Showed some glimpses of ability across six starts so far with a best of 2nd. Hasn’t raced since 5th behind Baengnyeon Daero in January. Don’t ignore.
12. HIGH VALLEY – Offered few clues on debut twelve weeks ago. Watching brief here.


Race 1 TANGO AND TANGO 20180309 R1 jumped awkwardly, shifted outwards and bumped

Verdict: Reasonably competitive maiden to open with. We’ll come down slightly on the side of (6) HANGIL, who showed significant improvement when 2nd last start and with a little more today can win. (3) TANGO AND TANGO overcame a poor start last time to run on well for 3rd and should be in the frame again while (7) BAENGNYEON DAERO showed some ability at this distance on debut and should be better today following a chastening experience in stiffer company over 1300M last month. (11) ROYAL RIVER returns for the first time in ten weeks having not been too far away in four of six starts and looks a contender too.

Selections (6) Hangil (7) Baengnyeon Daero (3) Tango And Tango (11) Royal River
Next Best 2, 1
Fast Start 2, 5, 9

Race 2: Class 6 (1200M) Allowance / KRW 40 Million

1. SAEROUN BOMUL – Two 3rd places, including last time when she led before weakening to 3rd. First try at further than the minimum.
2. SEUNGNI DAEJANG – Trained by South African Bart Rice, he had a 4th and 3rd in two starts so far. Up in trip for the first time and with strong claims.
3. SAKISAKI – Two 3rd places at 1000M and ran creditably in a good race at 1300M last start. In the frame.
4. TOP HERO – Last on debut in December in a slow time so sent back to trial. Looked much better when requalifying earlier this month but hard to recommend first up.
5. SIMON MAGIC – Decent 3rd of 7 at 1300M behind a couple of useful ones on debut on March 2nd. Not impossible here.
6. I’M YOUR STAR – Ran well on debut at this distance last October and he’s been closer than his results suggest in his three since. Back up to 1200M today, he has a chance.
7. AGUILENA – Stable-mate of Simon Magic. Debut-maker who trialed in acceptable fashion. Top jockey.
8. BAEKDU MYEONGWOL – A 5th and a pair of 4ths so far. Should get on the early speed here and can play a role in the finish. Stablemate of Top Hero.
9. FELICE – Stablemate of Seungni Daejang, he debuts here having looked useful in a trial two weeks ago. He led for much of it and will probably try to lead here too.
10. HUNTER PARK – A first-timer, it took him three trials to qualify and we’ll take a watching brief first-up.
11. WHIPLASH MARINE – Much improved on second start two weeks ago when 4th of 8 at this distance. 4th would be a realistic target again.


Race 2 NIL      

Verdict: This maiden race is restricted to three-year-olds hence the enhanced prize money. Bart Rice’s (2) SEUNGNI DAEJANG has run on well in both his two outings so far and the extra furlong today could suit him and accordingly we’ll make him the slight pick. (5) SIMON MAGIC looked competent when 3rd on debut earlier this month and can build on that here while (6) I’M YOUR STAR’s performances have been better than the raw form suggests. He returns to this trip for the first time since a strong showing on debut and can go close here. (3) SAKISAKI and (8) BAEKDU MYEONGWOL are others who should come under consideration.

Selections (2) Seungni Daejang (5) Simon Magic (3) Sakisaki (6) I’m Your Star
Next Best 8, 9, 1
Fast Start 1, 8, 9, 11

Race 3: Class 6 (1300M) Allowance / KRW 24 Million

1. GOLDEN AGE – Best of 2nd from fifteen outings to date. 3rd at 1000M in February but didn’t impress last start. Minor money hopes here.
2. GIPPEUM SARANG – Hasn’t been getting any closer in recent starts. First try at 1300M today.
3. VIP KING – Inconsistent but has shown ability. Top jockey gets on today and if he gets a first start – which he has drawn well to do – he has a chance.
4. HANEOLUI BIT – Not impressed in two efforts so far.
5. SERENDIPITER – Shown nothing at all from eight outings. Big outsider.
6. GANGHAN JILJU – Improved 3rd on first try at this trip last time. Likely 2nd-favourite here.
7. CHIEF LEADER – She’s been getting closer across three starts so far. The one who beat her last time went on to run a very good 2nd last week at a higher class and she should win.
8. SEORABEOL YEOJE – Best of 3rd from eleven starts came at this distance in January. Disappointed last time when favourite (see Stewards) but probably worth another chance.
9. GEODAEHAN WONSEOK – Bit of a wildcard. He’s not done much across an interrupted career to date but looked sharp in a trial two weeks ago. Watch the market.
10. GURI TOWER – Well back behind Chief Leader last time and came back lame. Lots to find.
11. YEONGGWANGUI CHIC – First start since last October. She’d run well prior to the layoff and trialed up well in a heat made much faster than normal by Triple Nine. In the placing hunt.
12. WIRE BAND – First start since last June. Trialed up alongside Yeonggwangui Chic but she can’t be backed first-up.


Race 3 GIPPEUM SARANG 20180309 R2 bumped near 350
HANEOLUI BIT 20180202 R3 buffeted between horse near 800
SERENDIPITER 20180309 R2 slow to begin and jumped awkwardly with its head up
CHIEF LEADER 20180302 R3 bumped at start – bumped 450
SEORABEOL YEOJE 20180223 R3 jumped awkwardly, shifted inwards and bumped the side of its barrier – When questioned about performance, rider said he was instructed to lead and had to work hard early in the race to obtain that position as a result when he applied pressure to the horse in the home straight, it failed to respond and proved disappointing
GURI TOWER 20180302 R3 hung outwards rounding the turn from the 900 metres WARNING – horse was sensitive in the mouth and when attempting to keep the horse straight, it got its head up on several occasions – post race vet lame left hind

Verdict: (7) CHIEF LEADER looks very much the one to beat here. She was 2nd behind Gemsuryeong, who went on to contend a photo-finish with Great Rock at class 5 last week. She’s shown progression across each of her three starts to date and it shouldn’t take much more to win this, probably leading all the way. (6) GANGHAN JILJU is also (more…)

Sunday Seoul & Busan: Race-By-Race Preview (March 25)

Silver Wolf headlines Seoul’s feature while Today, Doraonpogyeongseon and Perdido Pomeroy face off at Busan on a big Sunday of racing in Korea. There are 11 races at Seoul from 10:45 to 18:00 and 6 at Busan from 12:40 to 17:05.

Silver Wolf Donga

Last year’ Champion Filly/Mare Silver Wolf won February’s Donga Ilbo Cup (Pic: KRA)

Seoul Race 1: Class 6 (1000M) Allowance / KRW 40 Million

(2) JUNGLE BEAT ran very nicely for 2nd place on debut three weeks ago and Simon Foster’s filly looks hard to beat in this maiden for three-year-olds. She can set up camp just behind the early lead and if she runs like she did first-up, should be too strong late on. (9) HANSEN VOLT has shown some ability across two starts so far and should be looking to at least match the 3rd place he scored on his second outing a month ago. He’s another who perhaps won’t be the quickest out of the gate but can finish well. (12) FRENCH STAR looked competent enough on debut running 6th of 12 behind Hansen Volt and can improve today. (10) SANTOS and the solitary first-timer, (11) STAR LIST look to be others to follow.

Selections (2) Jungle Beat (9) Hansen Volt (12) French Star (10) Santos
Next Best 11, 4, 5
Fast Start 1, 4, 11, 12

Seoul Race 2: Class 6 (1200M) Allowance / KRW 40 Million

Three-year-old maidens again, this time with two debut-makers and both look to be in with a decent chance first-up. (7) MENI BLADE won a trial back in January ahead of (9) TAEWANG SINHWA, who went on to race encouragingly first-up. She should be on the early speed here and should be a threat. The other first-timer is (10) SMARTY BLUE, who showed at the front in his trial and ran on well enough to suggest he has a chance too. If racecourse experience is preferred, then (6) HAENGBOK STAR looks to be the pick. He was 4th on debut at 1000M a month ago but the margins were not huge, and he ran on nicely suggesting that the extra furlong today will be in his favour. (2) MERLIN and (8) ADELE JEONGSANG are others who may improve.

Selections (6) Haengbok Star (7) Meni Blade (10) Smarty Blue (8) Adele Jeongsang
Next Best 2, 11
Fast Start 3, 7, 8, 10

Seoul Race 3 Class 6 (1300M) Allowance / KRW 40 Million 

It’s about time (8) MIGHTY COOL won a race. She’s zero for thirteen but recent performances suggest she has one in her and it could well be today. She was a decent 3rd last time in what was by no means a good race, but it was stronger than this and so long as she doesn’t leave herself too much to do, she can finally get off the mark. (5) RUN AWAY was behind Mighty Cool that day and she too remains a maiden. She is inconsistent but, in this company, should be looking to at least place. (9) GANADORA looks the greater threat though. She’s only raced four times so far and has shown promise with a 2nd and 3rd place at 1300M and 1700M respectively in her latest two. She’s likely to be on the early speed here and can go very close. (7) SEOUL STAR and (11) MAJJABEUN SON are others in at least the hunt for places.

Selections (8) Mighty Cool (9) Ganadora (5) Run Away (11) Majjabeun Son
Next Best 7, 4
Fast Start 7, 9, 12

Seoul Race 4: Class 5 (1300M) Handicap / KRW 40 Million

(2) WONDERFUL JACKPOT was 3rd in both the Gyeonggi Govenor’s and Gwacheon Mayor’s Cups last autumn, Seoul’s top two juvenile races, before trying his luck in the Breeders’ Cup, the nation’s biggest race for two-year-olds, in December. That latter effort didn’t go well, and he’s not raced since but returns here with an excellent chance of making his way back to the winner’s circle. This is the distance at which he got his only win to date and he can settle behind the early speed and come through in the latter part (more…)

Seoul Saturday: Race-By-Race Preview (March 24)

Saturday racing at Seoul sees 11 races from 10:45 to 18:00. Here are the previews:

Race 1: Class 6 (1000M) Allowance / KRW 24 Million

Twelve maidens to kick us off. (2) SPEED YEOWANG registered her second career 3rd place finish last time out beating a couple of these in the process. It was a full eight-weeks ago so she comes in relatively fresh and has as good a chance as any of making the breakthrough here. (7) UN SEO was one of those beaten that day, but she ran well enough on reappearance at the end of February to suggest that she can come under consideration here. (5) GEOBOOGI MANSE and (6) HWANSANGUI BIT have both hinted at the potential to put in a good performance and can go well. The latter is likely to be on the early speed alongside (8) YOLO, who improved on his second start a month ago and can continue to make progress today.

Selections (2) Speed Yeowang (5) Geoboogi Manse (8) Yolo (7) Un Seo
Next Best 6, 10
Fast Start 2, 6, 8

Race 2: Class 6 (1300M) Allowance / KRW 40 Million

More maidens but this time it is restricted to three-year-olds. (6) BAEKDUUI JEONGSANG enters after back to back 3rd place finishes, both at this distance, and looks the one to beat here, most likely looking to lead all the way. (9) CLEAN UP SECRET ran a good 3rd back at the beginning of January, beating Baekduui Jeongsang, and was set to be well backed when scheduled to face that one again in February. He had to be scratched as some blood was found in his nostrils prior to the race but nothing else was wrong with him and he returns here for a stable that is having its horses come into form. (1) SEONGAM JEUNE was a decent 4th on debut on February 25th, beating four of these in the process and should beat plenty again, while (2) MASYA already has a 2nd place to his name at the distance and can at least aim to match today.

Selections (6) Baekduui Jeongsang (9) Clean Up Secret (2) Masya (1) Songam Jeune
Next Best 10, 5
Fast Start 4, 6, 8

Race 3: Class 5 (1300M) Handicap / KRW 40 Million

(10) WOOSEORA ICHEON ran well for 2nd at class and distance on February 25th, beating a couple of these along the way. His win came at this distance too and while he will want to get on speed early and will need to overcome the wide draw, he is capable of winning this. (12) SIMCHEONG SADAL was 5th in that race, about three lengths behind Wooseora Icheon, continuing a decent run of form and he can get closer today with the wide gate less of an issue than for the favourite. Another one draw wide, (11) MALAKAS can also go better than recent finishes suggest, facing slightly softer company today than in his latest couple of starts. Three horses step up in class today, two of them, (8) BANGGEUT BANGGEUT and (9) FIRST QUEEN, following maiden wins at this distance. Of the pair, (more…)

Busan Friday: Race-By-Race Preview (March 23)

The weekend’s Korean racing gets underway at Busan on Friday with 10 races from11:30 to 18:00. Here are the previews:

Race 1: Class 6 (1000M) Allowance / KRW 40 Million

Three-year-old maidens only here and ten of the are racing for the very first time. While we often value actual racing experience in these kinds of contests we’re going to make an exception here and focus on the newcomers. Fastest in trials was (8) TAEYANGUI CHUKJE. He looked very much like he knew what he was doing and with the champion jockey up is sure to be well-backed. (4) SUN DAY will have plenty of followers too. From Kim Young Kwan’s stable, she was no better than average in her trial but is a half-sister to Today, a stablemate who has won a remarkable nine of eleven starts so far. (7) USEUNG TICKET is also a half to a couple of very useful types and despite the unfashionable connections, trialled up competently and should come under consideration. (1) MIRACLE ALICE and (3) BICHUI HAENGJIN have also caught the eye in trials. As ever with so many first-timers, keep an eye on the market.

Selections (8) Taeyangui Chukje (4) Sun Day (1) Miracle Alice (7) Useung Ticket
Next Best 3, 2
Fast Start 1, 7, 8

Race 2: Class 6 (1300M) Allowance / KRW 40 Million

Another maiden for three-year-olds although this time all of them have raced at least once before. With a 2nd and a 3rd from two outings to date, (7) CHEONHA GAMDONG looks the one to beat here. Both have been at this distance and he ran on very nicely for 2nd a month ago in what really looks like stiffer company than this and it shouldn’t take much improvement to see him home on top today. (1) BAEKDU BAEKHO races for the first time in 21 weeks. While he finished 2nd in that latest start in October, he raced extremely ungenerously and was banned for three months with a requirement to pass two consecutive trials before being allowed to race again. It took him no fewer than seven trials to satisfy that requirement and today we’ll see if it was worth it. He really should get a quite easy early lead today and if he behaves himself, we know he has the talent. (6) WINNING AGAIN also raced rather greenly on what was his 3rd start three weeks ago but ran well enough in 2nd and should improve here. (2) CHEOLBI and (8) GRAY STORM both have a little more experience and both have proven themselves competitive in this company at least.

Selections (7) Cheonha Gamdong (1) Baekdu Baekho (6) Winning Again (2) Cheolbi
Next Best 8, 11
Fast Start 1

Race 3: Class 6 (1300M) Allowance / KRW 24 Million

Another maiden although this time it isn’t restricted to three-year-olds. (6) USEUNG TEN already has a pair of 3rd places at this distance to his name. He perhaps would have finished a little better than he did last time had he not hung outwards rounding the turn and if Kim Cheol Ho can keep him focused here, he has a good chance of ending his spell at class 6 with a win. (4) MAJOR ALPHA overcame a tardy start to run a much improved 2nd at 1000M on March 2nd. He’s up in trip for the first time today and based on that evidence, it may suit. (2) MY TIME hasn’t been too far away in his latest couple and should get close again while (7) TESTA MAGIC and (8) BELLAMY GONGJU have both hinted at some ability so far and can improve today.

Selections (6) Useung Ten (4) Major Alpha (2) My Time (8) Bellamy Gongju
Next Best 7, 10
Fast Start 4, 5

Race 4: Class 6 (1600M) Allowance / KRW 24 Million

Small field here and (4) TEXAS SIDAE stepped up to this distance on February 23rd and ran a very solid race, showing at the front before eventually finishing in 4th. He can get to the front again today and this time can hold on. (5) BIG RED IJI has been improving (more…)

Triple Nine & Clean Up Joy Are Winners Again at Busan & Seoul

Two of Korea’s most popular horses returned to the winner’s circles at Busan and Seoul yesterday with Triple Nine and Clean Up Joy prevailing in valuable Sunday handicaps.

Three-time President’s Cup winner Triple Nine had put in a strong effort in December’s Grand Prix Stakes, trying to counter early leader Cheongdam Dokki but ultimately finished 3rd behind stablemate and rival Power Blade. Following three months off, he returned to action on Sunday in the 2000M “Road To Group 1” feature on the south coast.

The race attracted a strong line-up and Triple Nine had to work for his win, with You Hyun Myung sitting towards the back of the field as the early pace was set, inevitably, by Success Story. Although he had plenty of traffic to negotiate in the home straight, the gap did open up and Triple Nine, carrying 60kg, ran on nicely to win by two lengths. Buhwarui Banseok, who also ran so well in the Grand Prix, came home in 2nd place ahead of Good Casting who, a disappointing effort over 2200M last month aside, has been a revelation in recent months.

It’s a good start to the season for the now 6-year-old Triple Nine which will likely have a bid an unprecedented fourth President’s Cup and another tilt at the so-far elusive Grand Prix as its ultimate targets.

Clean Up Joy has already won a Grand Prix, having been victorious in 2016’s season finale when he beat Triple Nine by just over a length. Although his 2017 started strongly with three consecutive wins, including in the YTN Cup, he lose his way a little in the second half of the year.

A chastening experience when not looking 100% in the Busan Mayor’s Cup in the summer was followed by 3rd place for Clean Up Joy in the KRA Cup Classic, a race he’d won in each of the two previous seasons as three-year-olds Cheongdam Dokki and New Citadel announced their arrival on the elite scene. He could then only run 7th in the Grand Prix before beginning 2018 with another defeat at the hands of Cheongdam Dokki.

Clean Up joy had a significantly simpler task then Triple Nine, facing only six rivals in Seoul’s “Road To G1” event. Such was his rating superiority that all of them were out of the handicap and accordingly carried 52kg to Clean Up Joy’s 60kg. Under Park Tae Jong, he hit top gear at the two furlong pole and cruised away for a visually impressive seven-length score.

There will be tougher tests to come.