It’s YTN Cup Day! Cheongdam Dokki takes on Clean Up Joy once more in the big race at Seoul but there’s a whole host of other action going on both in the capital and at Busan. Click here for an in depth preview of the big race. There are 11 races at Seoul from 10:45 to 18:00 and 6 at Busan from 12:40 to 17:05. Here is the race-by-race:
Seoul Race 1: Class 6 (1000M) Allowance / KRW 40 Million
(11) ROMAN BLADE has shown promise across two starts so far, leading for much of her latest outing on April 7th before just weakening a little late on and ending in 3rd. She’s had seven weeks off since then and should win this all-filly affair. (1) CULLINAN made a fresh start in April, several months after her debut and she ran well in 3rd in a similar race to this four weeks ago. (5) BAEKSAN FORCE was three-lengths behind in 4th that day and both can challenge today. (2) L CHOICE debuted in the same race but despite being well backed on the strength of winning a March trial, only beat two home and better will be expected here. There are three first-time starters and among them, (10) SAGWARANG will be best supported, having won a trial just last week.
|Selections||(11) Roman Blade (1) Cullinan (5) Baeksan Force (10) Sagwarang|
|Next Best||2, 9|
|Fast Start||1, 9, 10, 11|
Seoul Race 2: Class 6 (1200M) Allowance / KRW 40 Million
(5) HANIL DALBIT was just beaten a neck into 2nd place on his first try at this distance on April 29th, having made all until close to the line and he has as good a chance as any in what is not a strong, but very competitive race. (11) GANGHWA CHONGGAK registered his second consecutive 3rd place that day and can go close again. (3) GONG SAN has shown good progression across three outings so far, running a good 2nd last time and should be in the hunt. (4) STAR LIST too was an improved 2nd in what wasn’t an especially strong race last time and could go well once more. (7) BURUI GORI ran a creditable 4th on debut at the distance last month and he too has every chance of building on it today.
|Selections||(5) Hanil Dalbit (7) Burui Gori (3) Gong San (11) Ganghwa Chonggak|
|Next Best||4, 10|
|Fast Start||3, 5, 10, 11|
Seoul Race 3: Class 5 (1300M) Handicap / KRW 40 Million
(9) THE FINAL began her career with three consecutive 3rd place finishes, improving to 2nd on her first try at this class last time. Today, she can finally come out on top, most likely looking to lead from the gate. (8) SARYEONI DREAM actually beat The Final when registering his solitary win to date back in January. He finished 4th last start but hung out to the extent he was sent back to trial afterwards. He completed his trial in good-looking fashion and should be a factor here. Other factors include (2) DUSON WANGJA, who despite being yet to win, has never been too far away across seven efforts to date, and (11) HIN BYEOL, up in class and distance following a decent win over 1000M at the end of last month.
|Selections||(9) The Final (8) Saryeoni Dream (2) Duson Wangja (11) Hin Byeol|
|Next Best||4, 1|
|Fast Start||9, 10, 11|
Seoul Race 4: Class 5 (1200M) Handicap / KRW 40 Million
Small field and (7) HAMBAK MISO looks the one to beat. A winner on debut in March, he’s run well for 5th and 3rd in two subsequent starts at this class over 1200M and 1300M. He can take a sit behind the early lead and finish off strongly. (4) SOMETHING MYSTERY got his maiden win at the fourth time of asking in March and steps up in class here following a ten-week break. His stable is in great form at the moment and he should go close. (5) PENETRO showed some talent across four starts in the latter half of last year but hasn’t raced since running 3rd in a good race on December 17th. He romped home in a trial two weeks ago – with (1) JEONGSANG MANSE eight-lengths adrift in 2nd – and can be in the hunt first up. (2) HANIL MAGIC another one with a chance and likely to be on pace early.
|Selections||(7) Hambak Miso (4) Something Mystery (5) Penetro (2) Hanil Magic|
|Fast Start||2, 4, 5|
Busan Race 1 will not be on any international simulcast service but…selections…ok…(6) CLASSIC MATCH should win: 6-2-10-7.
Seoul Race 5: Class 4 (1200M) Handicap / KRW 60 Million
(9) GLOBAL QUEEN won on debut on Christmas Day 2016 and then didn’t race again until this March. She was runner-up on her return before winning at this distance at class 5 on April 28th. She is up in both class and distance today but should have too much for this field. (2) WING FLY is up in class following a good win at 1300M a month ago and should be competitive while (3) WELLBEING STORY can be respected having won at long odds on a muddy track last time out. (6) RAON ACE disappointed when favourite at class and distance on April 29th, being beaten by, among other, (7) GANGDAEGANG but can be better this time around. Similarly (8) SPEED CHEONGNYONG had a hard time at 1400M on a sloppy track two weeks ago but can be given another chance today.
|Selections||(9) Global Queen (2) Wing Fly (6) Raon Ace (8) Speed Cheongnyong|
|Next Best||7, 3|
|Fast Start||2, 4, 9, 10|
Busan Race 2: Class 5 (1300M) Handicap / KRW 40 Million
(6) BAENGNYEON SIDAE has a 3rd and 4th from his two efforts at this class since getting his maiden win in January. He’s run on well both times and could get it properly right today. (2) NAMDO GEOSANG is more experienced and also enters with form reading well and should be involved. (3) WONDERFUL MEMORY is up in class having notched his maiden win at the fifth time of asking on April 20th. It was at this distance and he can compete at this level. (5) YOUARE THE CAPTAIN was an improved 3rd at class and distance last time and can have a say too. (7) ROYAL GOLD has only raced three times, winning on debut, and while he was a long way back behind Youare The Captain last time, can be given another chance here.
|Selections||(6) Baengnyeon Sidae (5) Youare The Captain (7) Royal Gold (3) Wonderful Memory|
|Next Best||8, 12, 11|
|Fast Start||2, 4, 7, 9|
Seoul Race 6: Class 4 (1300M) Handicap / KRW 60 Million
Another ultra-competitive race that could go one of many ways. (5) SUN START beat (6) ECHO GOLD and (4) HAENAEMA as the three of them came home 2nd, 3rd and 4th respectively at class and distance on April 29th. There was just a neck between the former two and while Sun Start is the slight pick again, the form could easily be overturned. (3) JANGSAN BEARS was just beaten a head into 2nd place over 1200M last time and returns after ten weeks off with claims to at least match that today. He should be on pace early and can go all the way. (7) MENI PARK won an all-filly race at this distance on April 29th and while she carries an extra 4kg today, must be respected. There is one debut-maker, Kitten’s Joy colt (8) MUNHAK JOY. He looked very sound in trials, winning his latest just last week and can run well first-up – as ever with debut-makers in races such as this, watch the market.
|Selections||(5) Sun Start (3) Jangsan Bears (8) Munhak Joy (6) Echo Gold|
|Next Best||7, 4|
|Fast Start||3, 8, 9, 10|
Busan Race 3: Class 4 (1600M) Allowance / KRW 60 Million
(6) SUN DAY, half-sister to class 1 sprint star Today, won her first two with ease but suffered her first reverse when put up to this trip three weeks ago. That was a good race though, stronger than this and she was beaten less than a length. She’s fancied to have learned from that and to get it right today. (5) CHEONHA GAMDONG looks a prospect too. He’s up in class having won his latest two, the most recent of which was at this distance and he can be a threat. (7) VIVA VICTORY enters following two very useful 2nd places, both at class and distance and a repeat is highly possible. Another one with talent is (2) MABEOPUI JILJU, a winner of a good race at the distance last month and with the services of Fergus Sweeney today. (9) EUNGNIBYEOSU best of the rest.
|Selections||(6) Sun Day (5) Cheonha Gamdong (2) Mabeopui Jilju (7) Viva Victory|
|Next Best||9, 1, 10|
|Fast Start||5, 6|
Seoul Race 7: Class 4 (1400M) Handicap / KRW 60 Million
(3) GANGTOMA has won two from three so far (and was disqualified after being 1st across the line in another). He’s up in class today but looks to be headed for better things and should comfortably dispose of this opposition. (1) WONDERFUL CHAMPION was a good winner over 1700M a month ago and finds himself up in class with every chance of going well while it’s a similar story with (10) JUNGDONG JIJON although his win last time was at 1300M (4) JIGONG BULPAE is a recent winner at this class and should challenge for a place while (7) CHOROK JILJU looks best of the rest.
|Selections||(3) Gangtoma (1) Wonderful Champion (10) Jungdong Jijon (7) Chorok Jilju|
|Next Best||4, 9|
|Fast Start||3, 5, 8, 11|
Busan Race 4: Class 3 (1600M) Handicap / KRW 75 Million
(9) BONUS II returned from five months off to win at his class over 1800M in February with three of his rivals here back down the track. He’s had another few months off since and drops back in trip but could win again. (6) DYNAMIC ROOKIE also steps back to a mile after a good 3rd at 1800M just three weeks ago and should be firmly in the hunt from the front. Also on pace early will be (5) JUSTINE MAGIC. He’s a bit of a wildcard here, having only raced twice and running out a three-length winner over 1000M four weeks ago. She looks to have potential. As indeed does (3) POTENTIAL. Thomas Gillespie’s filly remains a maiden after six attempts but has rarely been far away and tries a mile for the first time. (2) MORNING KOREA is a couple of races into a comeback ad could improve.
|Selections||(3) Potential (5) Justine Magic (9) Bonus II (6) Dynamic Rookie|
|Next Best||2, 7|
|Fast Start||1, 5, 6, 10|
Seoul Race 8: Class 5 (1700M) Handicap / KRW 40 Million
(7) MENI BLADE was 2nd on debut in March and then followed up with a very comfortable win at the end of April over 1300M. He is up in both class and distance here, but neither should be a concern and he’ll take some beating. (9) DREAM INDY is yet to win in four starts but has never been worse than 3rd and can at least match the 2nd he registered at this distance on April 14th. (1) CITY CHAMP too comes in off back to back runner-up finishes and can aim for a repeat today. (3) EAST KINGDOM was a touch disappointing last time but the increase in trip today may benefit. (12) MAMKKEOT DALYEO has certainly taken well to two turns with a 4th and a 2nd from two attempts so far and he should be in the mix as well.
|Selections||(7) Meni Blade (12) Mamkkeot Dalyeo (1) City Champ (9) Dream Indy|
|Next Best||3, 10, 5|
|Fast Start||7, 9|
Busan Race 5: Class 3 (1400M) Handicap / KRW 75 Million
(9) YEONGCHEON DERBY won his first three races including Busan’s top juvenile race last November before taking his chance in the KRA Cup Mile, the first leg of the Korean Triple Crown, at Busan in April. He ran well enough in 5th, suffering his first defeat. His trainer opted to take other horses to the Korean Derby two weeks ago, so Yeongcheon Derby returns here and will surely be too good for class 3. (2) FIVEFOLD and (7) RED YOUNG MYEONGUN, the latter up in class today, look most likely to battle it out for second-place honours although good runs from (3) MR. SPENDING and (8) ROYAL HEART can’t be ruled out.
|Selections||(9) Yeongcheon Derby (2) Fivefold (3) Mr. Spending (7) Red Young Myeongun|
|Next Best||8, 6|
|Fast Start||2, 4, 9|
Seoul Race 9: Class Open (2000M) The YTN Cup Allowance / KRW 250 Million
(6) CHEONGDAM DOKKI has bested his main rivals here more than once and surely will again. He’s the most exciting horse on the peninsula right now and he should make all to win. He will need to make a mistake to lose. Last year’s winner (12) CLEAN UP JOY has seen Cheongdam Dokki take over as Seoul’s top horse over the past few months but still has the best chance of giving him a fright. He got to within two and a half lengths of him in the Herald Business last month and should be targeting a narrower margin today. His stablemate (2) SHAMROCKER was 3rd in that race and is third pick here too. (5) PLACES TO GO will be a final Stakes runner for trainer Ha Jae Heung, who retires this weekend. The four-year-old gelding has won his latest three at class 1 and can compete for the money here. (11) MOONHAK CHIEF is an up and comer and while taking on the top line of favourite here may be a bit much too soon, he can still beat plenty.
|Selections||(6) Cheongdam Dokki (12) Clean Up Joy (2) Shamrocker (5) Places To Go|
|Next Best||11, 9|
|Fast Start||3, 6, 8|
Busan Race 6: Class 1 (2000M) Handicap / KRW 110 Million
(4) BUHWARUI BANSEOK beat five of these as he got back to winning ways at class and distance on April 22nd. It was just reward for a very good horse who is always raced against the best and always runs well (his 5th in the Grand Prix Stakes last December was terrific run). He carries an extra 3.5kg today but is good enough to overcome it. (8) DYNAMIC DASH and Grand Prix 2nd place-getter (3) DONGBANG DAERO came home 2nd and 3rd behind Buhwarui Banseok last time and both should be a danger again. (1) SUCCESS STORY will lead early and it’s just a matter of how many he can hold off in the closing stages – he should come home with at least some money. (2) CHAMP LINE is another very solid campaigner and can be involved in the finish.
|Selections||(4) Buhwarui Banseok (1) Success Story (3) Dongbang Daero (8) Dynamic Dash|
|Next Best||2, 5|
|Fast Start||1, 5|
Seoul Race 10: Class 3 (1700M) Allowance / KRW 75 Million
(1) EAST PALOS beat three of these on his way to a class and distance triumph on April 15th. He came from well off the pace that day and while he carries an additional 4.5kg today, a repeat can’t be ruled out. (2) YEOKJEONUI USEUNG steps up significantly in trip following a narrow win in a good race at 1200M four weeks ago and looks to have solid claims, likely trying to lead from gate to wire. (3) TOTAL WALKER has only won once in thirty-five attempts but is rarely far away and has a good chance of getting in the places again. (5) DAEGUNHAM was a battling winner over 1800M last time and just like East Palos, can overcome the additional weight imposition here. (8) CHUKACHUKA dead-heated for 3rd with Total Walker last start and can get close once more.
|Selections||(2) Yeokjeonui Usueng (1) East Palos (3) Total Walker (5) Daegunham|
|Next Best||8, 4|
|Fast Start||2, 6, 8|
Seoul Race 11: Class 3 (1400M) Handicap / KRW 75 Million
He’s been 2nd and 3rd in his latest two outings, at 1800M and 1900M respectively, beating a few of these along the way and dropping back to a sprint distance, (11) GEUMTUSA is going to be hard to beat today. The rest look a little bit average with up-turns on recent form required almost all round. (8) VALLEY STAR finished two-and-a-half lengths behind Geumtusa last time in 4th place and can challenge again. (4) MR. FORTUNE and (7) RISING FUTURE both have ability and can give the favourite a race while (3) DAONMARI races for the first time since last November and trialled up in encouraging fashion. (10) SUPER CAPTAIN is inconsistent but is another who is better than recent form suggests and who can be more competitive today.
|Selections||(11) Geumtusa (8) Valley Star (4) Mr. Fortune (10) Super Captain|
|Next Best||3, 6, 7|
|Fast Start||2, 3, 10|