Globe-trotting jockey Alan Munro will finally make his Korea bow on Saturday. The English Classic winning rider begins an initial four-month license at Seoul Racecourse with five rides across the weekend.
Alan Munro rode his first winner in 1985, aged 18 at Yarmouth, serving his apprenticeship under Barry Hills and Mel Brittain becoming a fully-fledged rider in 1990. A year later, shortly after becoming retained jockey for Prince Fahd Salman he won the Epsom Derby on Generous, trained by Paul Cole. The pair would go on to win the Irish Derby and then the King George VI and Queen Elizabeth Stakes at Royal Ascot.
Munro continued to meet with success throughout the early and mid-1990’s, winning Group races on two continents with Zoman in 1992 before relocating to Hong Kong. There he would win both the Hong Kong Gold Cup and Queen Elizabeth II Cup on Industrialist in 2000.
After taking four years away from the sport, Munro returned to action in the UK in 2005 where he won the Northumberland Plate, Ebor and Cesarewitch on the popular Sergeant Cecil. Since leaving the UK permanently in 2010, Munro has plied his trade around Asia with stints on the NAR circuit in Japan, in Mauritius and most recently in Singapore.
Munro kicks off his Seoul stint on previously unraced three-year-old filly Daegun OK in race 1 on Saturday and also has rides for trainer Kim Hak Soo and Song Moon Gil later in the day. Here’s the race-by-race:
Race 1: Class 6 (1000M) Allowance / KRW 40 Million
Three-year-old maiden fillies to begin with. Only two have raced before and for one of those, it was eight months ago. The other one, (4) BEST SINHWA didn’t do too much wrong on debut and can match the 4th place she achieved that day. (7) GEUM STAR performed very nicely in her trial, getting out of the gate well and leading for much of it. She should go well first-up. (3) TAP LINE was just a couple of lengths behind in the same heat and can also be competitive. That was Tap Line’s second trial having previously run 2nd to (6) COMPLETE SHOCK, who is another who looks to potentially have some talent. (1) WINNER SAY and (2) CHOWON MARU are others who may be backed first-up here.
|Selections||(7) Geum Star (3) Tap Line (2) Chowon Maru (1) Winner Say|
|Next Best||6, 4|
|Fast Start||2, 7, 10|
Race 2: Class 6 (1300M) Allowance / KRW 24 Million
(9) BINNANEUN RUBY is the likely favourite here. She’s a fifteen-race maiden but recent form reads well, and she beat a couple of these on her way to a close 3rd place at the distance a month ago. She can settle behind a pace that will probably be set by (1) BULUI QUEEN, who steps up in trip following a couple of encouraging performances at 1000M. (3) SPECIAL BIRD is another who will aim for a fast start. She ran 4th at this distance last time and should be looking to better it here. (8) BAEKDU GEOPO and (12) A ONE HAMMER are others in the hunt.
|Selections||(9) Binnaneun Ruby (1) Bului Queen (3) Special Bird (8) Baekdu Geopo|
|Next Best||12, 7|
|Fast Start||1, 3, 6, 12|
Race 3: Class 6 (1300M) Allowance / KRW 40 Million
A competitive maiden for three-year-olds. Both (2) SIMJANGUI GODONG and (6) JEONGSANG STAR come in having finished 3rd on their respective debuts. Both are firmly in the hunt here with Simjangui Godong marginally favoured. (1) HEUK JEONSA was an improved 2nd behind Jeongsang Star last time and can continue his progress today. (3) EX BLADE similarly ran pleasingly enough for 5th on his debut last month and may appreciate the extra distance here. There are four first-timers and among them, (10) SPADE MASHIE looks the pick. He showed promise on a trail at the beginning of this month looks nicely placed here.
|Selections||(2) Simjangui Godong (6) Jeongsang Star (10) Spade Mashie (1) Heuk Jeonsa|
|Next Best||3, 9|
|Fast Start||1, 9|
Race 4: Class 6 (1700M) Allowance / KRW 24 Million
Maidens with seven of the twelve trying two-turns for the first time. (4) MYEONGMA JILU has a best of 3rd from three starts so far. That was at 1000M, but she ran well enough over 1300M last time to suggest she can be a factor here. (3) SINUI CHUKBOK has also only appeared three times, all of them at 1000M. She too has shown a little bit of promise and may suit the big step up in trip. (11) EVERYTHING WIN beat a couple of these on her way to 4th place at 1300M on January 26th and could be ready to give two-turns another shot here. Similarly (7) CHA MARU, who has a 4th place to his name at this distance – albeit almost a year ago – enters with recent form reading positively and can go close. (10) LUCKY FACTORY looks best of a very mediocre rest.
|Selections||(4) Myeongma Jilju (11) Everything Win (7) Cha Maru (3) Sinui Chukbok|
|Next Best||10, 2|
|Fast Start||3, 6, 7|
Race 5: Class 5 (1700M) Allowance / KRW 40 Million
Two standouts here and they’ll be coming out of the widest gates. (11) BULHUUI MYEONGGOG got his maiden win at the 21st time of asking on January 12th at this distance. The time before he was just beaten a nose. He does carry an additional 4kg today, but he can repeat. (12) MASYA remains a maiden following ten attempts but has come close in her latest two, just going down by half a length over 1300M last time. She tries two-turns for the first time here and it may well suit. (6) BAEKDUI TAEYANG and (9) FIRST QUEEN, the latter 5th behind Bulhuui Myeonggog last month, should both be (more…)