The second leg of the Sprint Series takes place at Busan on Sunday and it’s set to be a big one as New Legend, five-for-five in Korea, takes on Doraonpgyeongseon and a host of top sprinters in the Busan Ilbo Cup (KOR G3) over 1200M. It’s the first leg of the 2019 Sprint Series which concludes with the Korea Sprint International race in September. There are 6 races at Busan on Sunday from 12:40 to 17:10 as well as a full program at Seoul with 11 races from 10:45 to 18:00. Race-by-race is below along with horse-by-horse for the big race:
Seoul Race 1: Class 6 (1300M) Allowance / KRW 40 Million
Three-year-old maidens to kick things off and nice and competitive it is too. The pick is (9) ROYAL GHOST, 3rd in both her starts so far and only narrowly defeated in a tight three-way finish last time out. (2) GEUMSUNI STAR has a 3rd and a pair of 4ths from his latest three and while all three times he’s been quite far back, his times at this distance have been decent and he has potential for more. (10) MANSEOK JIGI ran a couple of times at the end of last year and hinted at ability. He looked very solid when trialling up two weeks ago and can be considered first-up. As can the solitary debut-maker (11) CHUNGDAM HORANGI. He impressed in his heat and should do well here.
|Selections||(9) Royal Ghost (11) Chungdam Horangi (2) Geumsuni Star (10) Manseok Jigi|
|Next Best||4, 7|
|Fast Start||4, 7, 9|
Seoul Race 2: Class 6 (1700M) Allowance / KRW 24 Million
(9) CHEONNYEONUI BI ran on well for an improved 3rd place over 1300M four weeks ago and steps up in trip to two-turns for the first time with solid claims to get her maiden win. She’ll go back at the start and the extra trip should suit. (1) LUCKY FACTORY, (11) INDIAN BOSS and (5) BINNANEUN RUBY filled out 3rd to 5th when they raced each other at this distance on March 23rd and all three will have placing designs here. (12) CHOEGANG PARTY looked good when trialling last week and is another who may appreciate the step up in trip.
|Selections||(9) Cheonnyeonui Bi (1) Lucky Factory (11) Indian Boss (12) Choegang Party|
|Next Best||5, 8|
|Fast Start||1, 11|
Seoul Race 3: Class 4 (1700M) Allowance / KRW 60 Million
Four of these raced each other at class and distance on March 23rd and they filled out the top four places. (8) CHANGE MAKER was the one who came out on top that day, finishing well to score by half a length and he must accordingly be respected here. (5) HWANSANG STAR was 2nd, registering his third consecutive runner-up finish and he too should be in the hunt again. Favourite that day though was (1) MIGHTY M. It was his first try at the distance and he should have come on for having run well in 3rd. He is given another chance as top pick here. (2) PALA STAY was 4th in that race and can aim to match or better that here while among the ones who didn’t go that day, (7) DAEGUNUI GIL looks best
|Selections||(1) Mighty M (5) Hwansang Star (8) Change Maker (2) Pala Stay|
|Next Best||7, 12|
|Fast Start||1, 4, 5|
Seoul Race 4: Class 5 (1300M) Handicap / KRW 40 Million
Having scored his maiden win over 1000M in February, (3) BUCKETFUL GOLD ran a good 2nd on his first try at class and distance on March 24th. He should have come on for that and can go one better today. It won’t be easy though. (8) DIXIE AGAIN was an eye-catching winner on debut last month, scoring by six-lengths over this distance. He’s up in class today but looks very competitive. (2) EX BLADE also steps up after a gutsy win, again at this trip on March 31st and should be in the hunt as well. (9) VICAR BRACING was a mildly disappointing 4th when favourite two weeks ago but gets another chance here with Moon Se Young keeping faith, while (11) MAPAEBONG comes in with his most recent form reading well and can go close too.
|Selections||(3) Bucketful Gold (8) Dixie Again (9) Vicar Bracing (2) Ex Blade|
|Next Best||11, 5|
|Fast Start||1, 3, 6, 8, 10|
Busan Race 1 Selections: 1, 9, 2, 10
Seoul Race 5: Class 5 (1300M) Allowance / KRW 40 Million
(8) HORSE QUEEN led for much of the way around at class and distance on March 24th only to be denied by a nose on the line. The Testa Matta filly will be on pace again today and this time can get home in front. Joining her on the early pace is principal danger (5) SLING STONE. He too narrowly missed out last time but has won well at this distance before and should go close. (1) CHEON GOE SEONG remains a maiden but is up in class after a close 2nd place last start and should be competitive. (6) YEOKDAE CHOEGO, 4th behind Horse Queen last start, and (10) STRIDE UP, are others who should be in the frame.
|Selections||(8) Horse Queen (5) Sling Stone (1) Cheon Goe Seong (6) Yeokdae Choego|
|Next Best||10, 11|
|Fast Start||5, 8|
Busan Race 2: Class 5 (1300M) Handicap / KRW 60 Million
(5) SUCCESS PARTY won on debut at this distance the tail-end of last year but was disqualified when passing the line 1st on his second start in January. He ran 4th in Busan’s Classic trial in March and dropped back slightly in trip today, he’s going to be a strong favourite. (6) ROSA remains winless in six attempts but has plenty of near misses and should be aiming for at least a fourth runner-up finish today while (7) JUNGKKOT is an up and comer who should have progressed from a 4th place on her first try at this distance a month ago. (8) FOREVER NINE and (10) HAPPY KOREA are the others with serious placing claims.
|Selections||(5) Success Party (6) Rosa (8) Forever Nine (10) Happy Korea|
|Next Best||7, 3|
|Fast Start||5, 6|
Seoul Race 6: Class 5 (1000M) Handicap / KRW 40 Million
Really competitive race with lots coming off last start maiden wins. (5) YEONGHWAS FLYING was perhaps the most impressive of them, although both (7) DIA STORM and (9) WINNER CROWN also have solid cases in that regard. All three should be firmly in the frame today. Winner Crown will aim to lead from the gate as will (1) ROYAL BRONZE, who already has experience at this level and ran a good 3rd second-up on April 7th. On the subject of experience, (6) PARTY POWER races for the fiftieth time today and while a win looks unlikely, the mare is more than capable of finding the money in this company.
|Selections||(7) Dia Storm (5) Yeonghwas Flying (9) Winner Crown (1) Royal Bronze|
|Next Best||6, 3|
|Fast Start||1, 9, 10, 11|
Busan Race 3: Class 4 (1600M) Handicap / KRW 60 Million
(1) TOHAM ACE has finished no worse than 4th in six outings so far and is up in class having been on target over this distance last month. He made all that day and can do the same again here. (2) SANGSEUNG DAEHAN was a winner at this class and distance on March 24th. It was his maiden win on his twelfth start, and he is carrying an additional 3kg today, but he warrants respect. As does (11) EAST WIND, who was 2nd in that race, continuing a run of placing finishes. (6) VEGA KHAN and (9) MYEONGSIN POWER are others who can be expected to be close.
|Selections||(1) Toham Ace (2) Sangseung Daehan (11) East Wind (9) Myeongsin Power|
|Next Best||6, 7|
|Fast Start||1, 2, 11|
Seoul Race 7: Class 4 (1300M) Handicap / KRW 60 Million
Fillies and mares only here. (1) GONG SAN comes in off the back of two consecutive runner-up finishes, both at class and distance. She’s not a fast starter so she may need a little bit of luck in running, but she’s the class filly of the race and can win this time. (5) ACE SOLONGO beat a couple of these on her way to 2nd place at class and distance on March 30th and looks to be the main danger today although the up in class (8) MUNG CHI, a winner of two from four so far, was impressive when winning at this distance in a fast time last month and should be very competitive. (3) CLEAN FLOWER and (11) CHARON BLADE are others to take into consideration.
|Selections||(1) Gong San (5) Ace Solongo (8) Mung Chi (11) Charon Blade|
|Next Best||3, 9|
|Fast Start||3, 5, 11, 12|
Busan Race 4: Class 4 (1400M) Handicap / KRW 60 Million
(1) FRIDAY should have too much for this field. He was somewhat surprisingly beaten into 2nd over a mile three months ago but should be a different prospect back at 1400M today and looks head and shoulders above the rest. (3) JANGHAN JILJU was 3rd in that same mile race last time and at her best can be a threat while (4) JET SKY is better than her latest outing suggests and can get close too. (6) CEEYOUDOWNTHETRACK and (9) TIME SPEC are others capable of competing for at least places.
|Selections||(1) Friday (3) Janghan Jilju (4) Jet Sky (6) Ceeudownthetrack|
|Next Best||9, 8|
|Fast Start||1, 9|
Seoul Race 8: Class 3 (1400M) Handicap / KRW 75 Million
(9) NEUNGRYEOK SIDAE beat (8) PRIMO as the pair came home 1st and 2nd at class and distance on March 31st. There was less than a length between them that day and Neungryeok Sidae carries an additional 3.5kg today. With Primo in a good run of form, that result can be overturned today. (1) HEUNG OREUM ran poorly last start in February but was eventually found slightly lame. She’s had a couple of months off and should be a much different prospect today, likely leading from the start. (3) BIG EAR has held her own in decent company recently and shouldn’t be too far away here while (4) MAMBO KHAN drops back in trip after recent efforts at 1700M and should enter the picture too. (10) BEST BULLET is up in class after a good win at 1200M a month ago and is another who can be competitive.
|Selections||(8) Primo (1) Heung Oreum (3) Big Ear (10) Best Bullet|
|Next Best||4, 9|
|Fast Start||1, 2, 4, 9|
Busan Race 5: Class 2 (2000M) Allowance / KRW 90 Million
Small field here and while (6) CHIEF ACE was beaten into 3rd when odds-on favourite at this class over 1800M on March 17th, he is a winner at this distance already and will be strongly fancied to put things right today. (1) WORLD NUMBER ONE is a deep closer and will finish strongly. It’s been a long time since the latest of his four career wins, but he shouldn’t be too far away today. (3) HEUMUT and (5) MABEOPUI JILJU ran 3rd and 4th respectively at class and distance in March and can be competitive again while (2) MUHAN YEOLJEONG is another who may improve.
|Selections||(6) Chief Ace (1) World Number One (3) Heumut (5) Mabeopui Jilju|
|Next Best||2, 7|
|Fast Start||2, 6|
Seoul Race 9: Class 4 (1700M) Handicap / KRW 60 Million
After a string of near-misses (9) JEWANGUI BYEOL really should be returning to the winner’s circle today. He’s had a mixture of bad luck, bad starts and simply running into a couple of better horses. If he gets a good start today, the other two shouldn’t apply and he should win. (7) BRANDON returned from eight months out to run a very solid 2nd at class and distance on February 24th. He’s had another couple of months off since and should be dangerous here. (2) BEST EVER is a winner of two from five and steps up to this distance for the first time with no reason why it shouldn’t suit. (1) ONLY BARAM was a slightly unexpected winner at class and distance last time and while he is carrying an additional 3.5kg today, he must be respected. (8) EAST KINGDOM another firmly in the hunt.
|Selections||(9) Jewangui Byeol (7) Brandon (8) East Kingdom (2) Best Ever|
|Next Best||1, 10|
|Fast Start||2, 8, 9|
Busan Race 6: Class Open (1200M) Busan Ilbo Cup (KOR G3) / KRW 400 Million
- PARANG JUUIBO – Nine-years-old now. 8th in the Seoul Owners’ Cup and while he is well drawn to get on pace, others are favoured here.
- GOOD CASTING – Comes in off back to back class 1 wins over 1800M and 1400M so must be respected. Pace may be a little hot here but not without a chance.
- FINEST WARRIOR – 2nd to King of Glory in fast time at this trip in February before scoring another 2nd last time, again at today’s distance. More weight today but stable can never be ruled out. He’ll have backers.
- PANORAMA SHOW – Ran a big 3rd in the Owners’ Cup at Seoul beating Gaon Champ and has already won at class 1 in the capital at 1400M. Well drawn to get on pace and placing hopes at his best.
- SOJUNGHAN SOMANG – First start since running 3rd in the Donga Ilbo Cup over 1800M at Seoul in February. Previously won at 1400M at class 2. This looks a bit hot.
- KING OF GLORY – Won at this distance in a fast time in February and followed up with another win over Dynamic Star and Morning Daero three weeks later. Doesn’t necessarily need to lead here and looks to have a big chance.
- SINBIHAN BARAM – A winner of four from nine but has never raced at higher than class 3. Fast starter but up against it here.
- MORNING DAERO – 3rd behind King Of Glory in February before beating Drop The Beat on his way to a half length win over this distance on March 24th. Settles behind the leaders and could run into a place.
- DROP THE BEAT – Beaten by Morning Daero and Finest Warrior in his latest two outings and plenty to find here.
- NEW LEGEND – Unbeaten in five starts since returning to Korea, he races at this distance for the first time ever. Nevertheless, he is quick, and this could be the launchpad to a tilt at the Korea Sprint. Class could see him through.
- DORAONPOGYEONGSEON – Returns to action for the first-time since last November. A two-time SBS Sports Sprint winner and 3rd in the Korea Sprint last year, he’s looked well in trials and if he’s halfway right, he has a chance.
- DYNAMIC STAR – Beaten by King Of Glory and Good Casting in his latest two. Solid class 1 performer but perhaps not quite at the elite level.
- GAON CHAMP – Winner of seven from ten including big race at this distance just before Christmas. 4th in the Owners’ Cup last month, the draw does him no favours as he needs to be on or very close to the pace, but he has plenty of talent and it’s not impossible.
- WINNER RED – Well back in the Owners’ Cup, it’s his first try at this trip in a long time and others are favoured here.
Verdict: One of the hottest races of the year. (10) NEW LEGEND will probably be favourite, and his class may well see him through although he does seem more suited to longer distances. He’s never run at as short as this before, even in his six starts in the USA. He’s been untouchable at home so far though and we’ll stick with him. (11) DORAONPOGYEONGSEON returns to action. He’s a fine sprinter and at anywhere near his best, he’ll be a big danger while (6) KING OF GLORY and (13) GAON CHAMP are the picks of the up and coming four-year-olds. (2) GOOD CASTING has run into form recently and shouldn’t be overlooked while (3) FINEST WARRIOR is bound to have backers too.
|Selections||(10) New Legend (11) Doraonpogyeongseon (6) King Of Glory (13) Gaon Champ|
|Next Best||2, 3, 8|
|Fast Start||3, 4, 7, 13|
Seoul Race 10: Class 1 (1800M) Handicap / KRW 110 Million
(3) GANGTOMA is a winner of eight of his fourteen starts so far. He was a beaten favourite last time at class and distance, but he still beat three of these in the process and it’s hard to see him making any mistakes this time. (4) WINNER GOLD was 5th behind Gangtoma last time out and also has a similar resume. He’ likely the main danger if the favourite makes any mistakes here. (9) DOKDO JIGI comes in off the back of five straight wins and seven from nine in total. He’s up to class 1 for the first time today and while this is by far his stiffest test to date, he may still have improvement in him. (5) MORFHIS and (6) OP SEVEN are others who should be close while there is a return to action for (10) NEW CITADEL. The one-time rival of Cheongdam Dokki and Dolkong has seen his career ravaged by injury and hopes won’t be high today although he did look fit in a trial earlier this month.
|Selections||(3) Gangtoma (4) Winner Gold (9) Dokdo Jigi (5) Morfhis|
|Next Best||6, 1|
|Fast Start||3, 6, 9|
Seoul Race 11: Class 2 (1200M) Handicap / KRW 90 Million
The lightly-raced six-year-old (4) PHOENIX SUN is a winner of four from seven and made his 2019 debut last month with a five-length score at this distance. He’s up in class but should be winning again. Main danger is (7) OKAY QUEEN, who comes in following a 3rd and a 4th in her latest two, both at class and distance, and should be bettering those today. (1) STAR CAT and (2) JANGSAN WILD are both better than their respective latest starts suggest, while (9) GAMGYEOGUI SUNGAN is another in at least the hunt for places.
|Selections||(4) Phoenix Sun (7) Okay Queen (2) Jangsan Wild (9) Gamgyeogui Sungan|
|Next Best||1, 8|
|Fast Start||1, 2, 3|