Sunday Busan & Seoul: Kookje News Cup Day Race-By-Race Preview (November 18)

Doraonpogyeongseon faces off against Silver Wolf in a potentially electric renewal of the Kookje News Cup at Busan Racecourse on Sunday afternoon. The pair are joined by up and coming prospects Today, Ace Korea and King Of Ace in what could turn out to be one of the highlights of autumn. There are 6 Sunday races at Busan from 12:40 to 17:05 while at Seoul there are 11 from 10:45 from 18:00. Here are the previews with (unusually) Busan first. Horse by horse for the big race as well as for Seoul races 9-11:


Can Silver Wolf rise back to the top of the Sprint division on Sunday? (Pic: KRA)

Busan Race 1 Selections: 1, 3, 5, 7
Busan Race 2 Selections: 5, 12, 1, 3

Race 3: Class 4 (1600M) Handicap / KRW 60 Million

(1) PARK MINISTER only managed 6th of 8 last time at class and distance and was beaten by (8) WHITE POINT, among others. Nevertheless, it was his first try at this class and he didn’t run badly. He’s worth another go today. (4) YEONGGWANGUI SIDAE is up in class following two smart wins over 1300M. She’s up to a mile for the first time as well but she should be able to overcome both of those things and can be dangerous. (6) BUGYEONG BOLT moves up in class too, in his case following a very good 2nd over 1300M last month. It’s his first try at a mile as well but it could well suit. It’s been a long time since (7) DONGBANG BULPAE’s solitary win but he comes in following back to back 2nd places at this class over 1200M and 1400M and he has previously gone well at this distance. He won’t be far away.

Selections (1) Park Minister (4) Yeonggwangui Sidae (7) Dongbang Bulpae (6) Bugyeong Bolt
Next Best 8, 10
Fast Start 6, 7, 9

Race 4: Class 4 (1300M) Handicap / KRW 60 Million

(6) A PURE GOOD MAN ran out a three-length winner at class and distance on October 7th. He carries an additional 4.5kg today, and he has been a touch inconsistent, but he should have enough to see off this field. (4) MR. KOREA returned from four months off to pull off a somewhat unexpected win at the distance a month ago. His reward is to move up in class but he’s very nicely weighted and may challenge for the places. The favourite may face stiffer competition from (1) MYEONGSIN POWER and (3) GAMUNUI YEONGGWANG. The former ran well for 5th in a tougher race than this last time while the latter is second up after five months off and should improve. (8) CHIEF TIME was 6th behind A Pure Good Man last month but has since run a solid 3rd at 1000M and may get closer today.

Selections (6) A Pure Good Man (1) Myeongsin Power (3) Mr. Korea (3) Gamunui Yeonggwang
Next Best 8, 11
Fast Start 6, 7, 11

 Busan Race 5: Kookje Shinmun Cup (Listed) 1400M Weight for Age / KRW 350 Million

  1. WINNER RED – Recent form doesn’t read well although he should go better than he did when here for the Mayor’s Cup in July. Only start since 7th of 12 in class 1 handicap at Seoul and 7th would be an excellent result here.
  2. DROP THE BEAT – A winner at this distance in March before injuries kept him out for six months. Returned with 7th of 9 behind Ace Korea, Morning Daero and Perdido Pomeroy at 1200M on October 21st. Needed that run and distance should suit more here but more to find.
  3. SPEED MARK – Returned from six months off to run a good if unexpected 3rd behind King of Ace at this distance on September 16th. Top jockey gets on but plenty more is going to be needed here.
  4. TODAY – Looked set to become Korea’s top sprinter before being beaten by Doraonpogyeongseon in the SBS Sports Sprint in Seoul in June. Ran well for 3rd at Kranji a month later before struggling in the Korea Sprint in September. Don’t rule out a return to form and looked very fast in a trial last week.
  5. RICH YEOJANGGUN – Won five of her first six starts but has stalled since reaching class 2. Last ran here in August when 10th of 16 in the KNN Cup over a mile and it would be a surprise if she finished much higher than that today.
  6. DORAONPOGYEONGSEON – The top sprinter in Korea. A two-time winner of the SBS Sports Srpint and twice placed in the Korea Sprint. 2000M was an ask too much on last month’s KRA Cup Classic at Seoul but back at one turn today, if he runs to his best, he may be too good.
  7. ACE KOREA – 5th place-getter in the Korea Sprint and with the potential to usurp Doraonpogyeongseon at the top of the sprinting ranks. Didn’t get off to the best of starts on return to Busan last month but still overcame it to run a fast time in victory at 1200M. That looks to be his best trip with his only prior try at 1400M ending in 2nd place at class 3. He’s come on since then and he’ll be on pace here, that final furlong is going to be testing though.
  8. CITY STAR – Began the year with back to back runner-up finishes in Listed and Graded company but didn’t race again until last month when he completely blew the start and finished last over 1200M. Evident talent but hard to back.
  9. SILVER WOLF – Swept all before her last year but it’s been harder this term. Ran 3rd here to Doraonpogyeongseon at a mile in the Owners’ Cup before running a good 4th behind Cheongdam Dokki and Triple Nine in the KRA Cup Classic last month over 2000M. First run at 1400M in over a year, she gets a couple of kilos from most, is reasonably well drawn and with luck in running she can win.
  10. SINGIPARANG – Still at class 2 and yet to win at that level. This will be very challenging for him.
  11. KING OF ACE – Won at class 1 over this distance in September and then repeated the feat when pushed up to 1800M three weeks ago. Both times he was getting weight from rivals and he hasn’t got the ideal draw here. This is a big test for him but he looks to be getting better and better. If he gets to the front early, he has a chance.
  12. CHEONJEOK – Always takes his chance in listed or graded races but does tend to find himself overmatched. That will be the case here too.
  13. MORNING DAERO – Ran 2nd to Ace Korea at 1200M on October 21st which was a big uptick in form for him. Plenty more to find here though and he won’t be among the fancies.
  14. PERDIDO POMEROY – At one time set to become the top sprinter around, he just seems to have lost a little bit of pace recently. Always races in tough company and comes in having been 3rd to Ace Korea last month.
  15. BAEDARI BOBAE – Comes in off the longest losing streak of any of these at nineteen starts since his last win and that looks sure to be extended. Was dropped out of class 1 and despite one or two creditable recent performances, shows few signs of returning.

Verdict: 3rd in the Korea Sprint at 1200M and winner of the Owners’ Cup at a mile earlier this year, (6) DORAONPOGYEONGSEON has marked himself at as the Gold-Standard for horses in Korea over one-turn. A line can be drawn through the KRA Cup Classic last month as it can be for (9) SILVER WOLF too, although she ran rather well for 4th. Up until then, Doraonpogyeongseon had her number this year but she remains a fine sprinter and can’t be ruled out. The presence of those two makes this race a big litmus test for the up and comers. Peter Wolsley’s pair of (7) ACE KOREA and (11) KING OF ACE especially. If the race was at 1200M, Ace Korea could well be favourite but the extra furlong will be the big test here. The distance will suit King Of Ace very well and he could well pull off a surprise. The other main contender is (4) TODAY. Earlier this year he looked set to wrest the sprinting crown away from Doraonpogyeongseon but the older horse has since bested him twice at 1200M. Don’t rule him out here though.

Selections (6) Doraonpogyeongseon (7) Ace Korea (11) King Of Ace (9) Silver Wolf
Next Best 4, 2
Fast Start 2, 4, 11, 14

Race 6: Class 3 (1800M) Handicap / KRW 75 Million

It didn’t happen for (1) SUN DAY when sent to Seoul for the Jeju Governor’s Cup last month where she suffered her second defeat in six starts. Her previous one came on her only foray up to a mile and it’s interesting to see her sent up to 1800M for her Busan return. She has plenty of talent though and shouldn’t be ignored. It may be safer though to side with a couple who have already demonstrated ability at this class over at least a mile. (4) WONDERFUL MEMORY fits the bill having run a very good 2nd in a tough race on October 19th, beating a couple of decent ones along the way. It will be interesting to see how his front-running style works for him at 1800M, but he looks to have potential for more. (3) MORNING KOREA beat a couple of these on his way to 4th place at class and distance on October 14th. He’s only won one of nineteen but is rarely far from the money. (2) I’M YOUR MOTHER and (10) DAEHO MYEONGGA are others who could come into play.

Selections (4) Wonderful Memory (1) Sun Day (3) Morning Korea (10) Daeho Myeongga
Next Best 2, 7
Fast Start 1, 4, 5

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

(2) CHONGAL GACHI returned from eight months off to run 5th over this distance on October 21st, running after a slow start to finish ahead of three of his rivals here. His manners were poor that day but he should have come on for that run and could well prevail here. (9) RAON BULPAE finished 6th in that race, less than a length behind Chongal Gachi and can challenge again today. (7) AQUA STROM makes a comeback of his own today following five months out. He was going well before the layoff and trialled competently in October. (3) BINNANEUN RUBY and (8) TONGHAP SIDAE are others capable of running at least a place.

Selections (2) Chongal Gachi (7) Aqua Strom (9) Raon Bulpae (3) Binnaneun Ruby
Next Best 8, 12
Fast Start 4, 8

Seoul Race 2: Class 6 (1300M) Allowance / KRW 60 Million

Juvenile maidens here with all of them having raced at least once before and it’s Simon Foster’s (5) NIMUI HYANGGI who raced the best of them, just being beaten a nose on debut at this distance three weeks ago having previous come out on top in a trial. He can sit behind the lead and this time go one better. (1) TOUR BROTHER has raced twice and was a much improved 2nd on the latest of those on October 20th. He led for much of the 1000M ultimately beaten only by the favourite and he can go well on his first try at 1300M today. (10) DADDY GLORY ran competently for 4th at this distance a month ago and can look to improve while both (7) PRIVATE MAN and (11) JANGSAN FLY showed some promise at the minimum trip and step up for the first time today.

Selections (5) Nimui Hyanggi (1) Tour Brother (11) Jangsan Fly (10) Daddy Glory
Next Best 7, 3
Fast Start 1, 10, 12

Seoul Race 3: Class 5 (1000M) Handicap / KRW 40 Million

Having finished 3rd on debut, (3) EIFFEL was an eight-length winner on his second start on October 14th, making all. He’s up in class here but is well drawn to get on pace again and can go all the way. His main competitors are up in class too. (5) BAKCHAOREUM remains a maiden after two attempts but both times has run 2nd to highly thought-of juveniles and looks very nicely in this. (8) CHANGSEONG HERO was a somewhat unexpected maiden winner last time and while he will need to find a bit of improvement, should be involved too. (6) DIA PUNCH unseated his rider only a furlong from home a month ago. That was his first start since getting his maiden win in September when he actually beat Eiffel. He can be competitive here. (4) BEST MAID does have experience at this level and enters with her recent form reading well. She rarely misses by much and can go close again.

Selections (3) Eiffel (5) Bakcheoreum (8) Changseong Hero (6) Dia Punch
Next Best 4, 7
Fast Start 1, 3, 5

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

(7) RAPIDOCUS ran out a three-length winner over this distance on debut on October 13th and the colt steps up in class here with every chance of a repeat. There are a couple of big dangers though. (10) RULE BREAKER was even more eye-catching when securing his maiden win with an eight-length score at this distance four weeks ago. He’d been beaten by some nice-looking horses in his previous two and the win had been coming. (9) TAEPUNG EYES is another up in class after a maiden win of his own, in his case by five-lengths and he too will be competitive here. Of those with experience at this level, (1) CHILJONG CHILGEUM should be on pace from the start and can at least match the 4th he achieved last time out. (4) MONEY ZIF too has plenty of experience at this level and should be competitive in this field.

Selections (10) Rule Breaker (7) Rapidocus (9) Taepung Eyes (1) Chiljong Chilgeum
Next Best 4, 6
Fast Start 1, 3

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

Fillies (and one mare) only here and (4) YEOWOORI is the one to beat. She may still be a maiden after fourteen attempts, but she’s been getting closer and her latest two outings at this trip, ending in 3rd and 4th have looked very competent. She can get a good start here and can make the breakthrough. If she does fall short once more, (10) LUCAS could be the filly to take advantage. She was 2nd on her first try at this trip a month ago and looks to have scope for further improvement. (3) VICTORY STAR was 4th behind Lucas that day and can aim to match although (1) WANY K and (9) HUIMANG STAR should both be challenging for at least the places as well.

Selections (4) Yeowoori (10) Lucas (1) Wany K (3) Victory Star
Next Best 9, 6
Fast Start 1, 2, 4

Seoul Race 6: Class 4 (1300M) Allowance / KRW 75 Million

A juvenile race for imported horses and five of the twelve make their racecourse debuts. We’ll start with the experienced ones though and (1) DAEGUN ILGAL will be favourite. He’s raced twice so far with a 2nd on debut followed by 3rd on his reappearance last month. That 2nd came at this distance and while he’s not a fast starter, he can drop in behind the early leaders here and should be too strong late on. (7) MUNHAK TIGER has raced three times showing good progression and can build on the 2nd he landed over 1200M last time. He is probably the biggest threat. (5) INCHEON SPEED did nothing wrong in 5th on debut and can come on for that run. Among the first-timer starters, (8) PRO HAMSEONG and (12) DAEGUN JEPAE both won trials and can go well first-up.

Selections (1) Daegun Ilgal (7) Munhak Tiger (8) Pro Hamseong (12) Daegun Jepae
Next Best 5, 9
Fast Start 7, 8, 12

Seoul Race 7: Class 4 (1300M) Handicap / KRW 60 Million

(6) ALL THAT CHASE was a class and distance winner in September and while he came up short when favourite on his reappearance on October 13th, finishing 6th, he didn’t run badly and can be given another chance here. (10) SOL PARANG has won two from four so far and looked set for a third last month when in front close to home. She ultimately weakened (and didn’t change leads) ending up in 2nd place on what was her first try at further than the minimum distance. She goes up further in trip today but if she can get to the front from the wide draw, she has a chance. (2) CHO ORONG MA is a proven money winner at this level and should get close while (8) TAP MAGIC MASTER has shown promise across three outings so far with two 4th places to his name and he can continue his development here. (9) BENEDICT looks best of the rest.

Selections (6) All That Chase (10) Sol Parang (8) Tap Magic Master (2) Cho Orong Ma
Next Best 9, 7
Fast Start 3, 8, 10

Seoul Race 8: Class 4 (1700M) Handicap / KRW 60 Million

(3) WITH FRIENDSHIP has taken to this distance well with a win and a 2nd place finish from two starts since being stepped up to it in September. He was favourite when runner-up last month but ran well and he is in with a chance of winning here, most likely trying to lead all the way. (12) EAST KINGDOM also likes this distance and is up in class having made all to win by five-lengths on October 21st. It won’t be so easy for him today, especially from the widest gate, but he can certainly go close. (5) KING POSE ran a good 3rd at class and distance last time out and looks well in here to at least repeat. (4) HAWK EYES and the up in class (7) NEUNGRYEOK SIDAE are others who should be competitive.

Selections (3) With Friendship (12) East Kingdom (5) King Pose (4) Hawk Eyes
Next Best 7, 9
Fast Start 3, 5, 6, 7

Race 9: Class 2 (1700M) Handicap / KRW 90 Million

  1. JOEUN INYEON – First start since June. Fast when winning a trial in September but hard to back here.
  2. HWANGGEUM BISANG – 4th over 1800M on first try at this level after back to back wins at this distance in August and September. A chance.
  3. NASCA PRINCE – Ran well in in tough company on his latest three. Should be on the early pace and a big chance.
  4. NEW WHY FI – Struggled in two starts at this class. Well back behind Hwanggeum Bisang and Conservative last time. Better drawn today to get forward early.
  5. ALPHAKAN – Up in class following 3rd last time out at the distance. Nice light weight but plenty to find.
  6. THUNDER LIGHT – 2nd in JRA Trophy in September. Apprentice takes 4kg off the weight and he looks right in the hunt.
  7. EAST PALOS – Up in weight but enters in great form. Handles all track conditions and the one to beat.
  8. CONSERVATIVE – Decent 5th behind Hwanggeum Bisang last time on first start back since January. Could build on that here.
  9. GOOD HENNY – First start since June. Trialled adequately last month but big ask first-up here.
  10. DAEJANGBAK – Beaten by Nasca Prince in each of his latest two and plenty to fin today.
  11. NEW PARTNER – 5th in both starts at this level so far. 5th a realistic target today.
  12. CLEAN UP TEUKGEUP – Up in class after five-length score at the distance six weeks ago. Draw doesn’t favour this front-runner but not impossible.

Verdict: (7) EAST PALOS is up in weight and back up in distance, but he is very consistent and despite being 3rd behind (6) THUNDER LIGHT in the JRA Trophy back in September, he should be the one to beat here. He’ll settle behind the early lead and looks the class act of this field. Thunder Light races for the first time since running 2nd in that competitive JRA Trophy. He gets a nice weight here with an apprentice on board and could go close. (3) NASCA PRINCE ‘s latest three have all been in tough company but he’s acquitted himself well and will be a danger from the front. (2) HWANGGEUM BISANG won back to back races in August and September to get promoted to this level and ran well for 4th on his first attempt at it last month. (12) CLEAN UP TEUKGEUP is up in class having scored by a full five-lengths in a very fast time at this distance on October 6th. He’s in at a nice weight here and could be dangerous.

Selections (7) East Palos (3) Nasca Prince (6) Thunder Light (12) Clean Up Teukgeup
Next Best 2, 4
Fast Start 1, 3, 4, 11

Race 10: Class 3 (1400M) Handicap / KRW 75 Million

  1. PENETRO – Won HRI Trophy at the distance in September and 2nd in good race over 1300M last month. The one to beat.
  2. HAE HU – Super run last up beaten a neck by good horse on October 13th at 1300M. Slightly more weight and extra half furlong but should lead early and could win.
  3. HAETBINNA – Encouraging 5th of 9 at the distance two weeks ago but more improvement needed.
  4. CHOEGO BISEUL – Drops back in trip after recent work at 1700M. Light weight but plenty to find.
  5. BINGO STAR – Dropped back from class 2 earlier this year and not showed much improvement at this level. First start since August and not much to recommend.
  6. KING PLUCKY – 5th of 8 behind Penetro last time possibly a sign of form picking up. Interesting outsider.
  7. HYEONMU – Creditable 4th and 5th from latest two in similar company. Could have a chance of a place.
  8. BOLD SHINING – Won back to back races in May and June to get to this level. Only one start since and was 7th of 11. Minor money hope.
  9. STRONG SHINE – Drops back in trip but a 2nd place in August aside, recent form isn’t encouraging.
  10. CALLIOPE – Beaten by Penetro and Hae Hu in latest two but is a class and distance winner and capable of running competitive times. Front-runner and 3rd favourite here.
  11. BEST YEJI – Ran well for 5th over 1900M three weeks ago but found it hard over class and distance in September.
  12. SWEETLY HUMOR – Useful 4th in competitive race over 1300M last month. Placing chances here.

Verdict: (1) PENETRO won a competitive HRI Trophy at the distance in September before finishing 2nd to the very good Global Bank at 1300M five weeks ago. He looks very nicely in here and should be hard to beat. (2) HAE HU put in a super run when only beaten a neck by Dokdo Jigi over 1300M on October 13th. He’s up a couple of kilos and also half a furlong but he’s won at this trip before and is the main danger. He’ll be on speed from the start and could go all the way. Both Penetro and Hae Hu have beaten (10) CALLIOPE recently but the gelding, who is a winner of five from eleven so far, is better than those two races suggests and is the clear third-choice here. (7) HYEONMU and (12) SWEETLY HUMOR look best of the rest.

Selections (1) Penetro (2) Hae Hu (10) Calliope (7) Hyeonmu
Next Best 12, 6
Fast Start 2, 10

Race 11: Class 1 (1200M) Handicap / KRW 150 Million

  1. BRIGHT CAT – Slow away and sent back to trial after last start in August. Very fast in that trial two weeks ago and fresh start today. Could place.
  2. ALWAYS WINNER – Not quite at his previous Stakes winning level but with a fast start he’ll have a chance of holding on for some money
  3. ANOTHER SMART ONE – Lost his way a little lately and made a poor start three weeks ago in his first race in four months. Can improve today but hard to recommend.
  4. NEON GAMDONGIYA – 4th behind Igwangsaseok on first class 1 start in September but had a harder time when beaten by three of these last month.
  5. GOLD MUSIC – 2nd to Cheonjiga on October 21st. Has a much better draw today and may even start as favourite to overturn the form.
  6. JANGSANJEWANG – 2nd to Zentenary at 1200M in July but also ran on October 21st behind Cheonjiga in better race. Should be on pace early.
  7. ZENTENARY – Pulls off the occasional surprise and was a good 4th behind Cheonjiga on October 21st. Placing chance.
  8. MUNHAK PRINCESS – Up and coming filly she’s made all to win her last two in very good times. Low weight and big prospect.
  9. HAEMARU – Poor manners last time when 3rd over 1800M saw him sent back to trial. He completed that last week in fine fashion and could be an interesting outsider here.
  10. IGWANGSASEOK – 2nd on his first try at class 1 over 1400M nine weeks ago, beating three of these including an out of sorts Gold Music. First start since and not impossible.
  11. CHEONJIGA – Winner of three of his last four including over four of these on October 21st. Extra weight today a concern but still a real chance.

Verdict: Really competitive sprint handicap here. (11) CHEONJIGA is a multiple class 1 winner and threaded his way through a tough field – which included four of his rivals here – for his second consecutive success at the highest-level last time out. He could well do it again but is carrying an extra 4.5kg today. (5) GOLD MUSIC was 2nd that day but beat Cheonjiga on his way to victory at class and distance in July and could take advantage of the weight difference and a much better draw this time. The up and comer is (8) MUNHAK PRINCESS. A winner of three from seven so far, she’s run some class 1 quality times in winning her latest two, both at the distance, and there looks to be much more to come from her. (1) BRIGHT CAT was slow to begin on his last start all the way back in August but looked sharp when winning a trial earlier this month and could be an interesting outsider. (10) IGWANGSASEOK the best of the rest.

Selections (8) Munhak Princess (5) Gold Music (11) Cheonjiga (1) Bright Cat
Next Best 10, 2
Fast Start 1, 2, 6, 8

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