Day: September 7, 2019

2019 Keeneland Korea Cup & Sprint Day: Race-By-Race Preview (September 8)

Seoul Racecourse got off quite lightly from Typhoon Lingling which swept up the coast of Korea on Saturday. No races on the 13-race card were affected and everything is now set for the running of the 2019 Keeneland Korea Cup and Korea Sprint on Sunday. There are 10 races at Seoul on Sunday from 10:45 to 18:00 while there are also 6 at Busan from 12:35 to 17:30. Here is the race-by-race preview, including the Cup and Sprint:


Seoul Race 1: Class 5 (1000M) Handicap / KRW 40 Million

A really competitive handicap to open with. (12) BAEKSANG ran well for 4th last start over 1300M, leading for much of the way before weakening late on. He drops back to the minimum distance today and while he needs to overcome the widest gate, he has a chance. (5) FEDERAL CAT beat Baeksang when the pair came home 3rd and 4th over 1300M in July before Baeksang returned the favour a month later. Federal cat can come from just behind the early pace and finish strongly here. (8) HIGH BEAT and (3) DRAGON BOAT finished 4th and 6th when racing each other at this distance a month ago and both should be in the frame today. (9) CAMP BADA looks best of the rest.

Selections (5) Federal Cat (12) Baeksang (3) Dragon Boat (8) High Beat
Next Best 6, 9
Fast Start 3, 9, 11, 12

Seoul Race 2:  Class 6 (1000M) Allowance / KRW 24 Million

Juvenile maidens here with six of the twelve having raced before. The pick is (8) LION YEOJE, who ran a good 3rd on debut on August 18th having previously looked good in a trial. He’ll settle steadily and run on here. (11) WILD KINGDOM also managed 3rd on debut at the end of July and while it was at 1300M and he was a long way back, he can be a factor today. (2) DANGCHAN BARAM did nothing wrong when running 6th in a decent time on her first try and she can build on it here. Among the first timers, (4) RAON TAP MAN and (5) ROCK LINE looked best in trials.

Selections (8) Lion Yeoje (2) Dangchan Baram (11) Wild Kingdom (4) Raon Tap Man
Next Best 5, 3
Fast Start 2, 4, 6, 11, 12

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

(8) ROYAL SMARTY has registered back to back 3rd place finishes since being promoted to this class following a maiden score in June. Both those have been over 1700M, so he drops back in trip but looks right in the mix here. (7) LOVE RACE has run well in two starts back after a four-month layoff and should be close by while (11) PRIME QUEEN was below par last start at 1000M but can be given another chance today. (1) HUIMANG STAR and (5) DAECHEON HERO are others in at least the placing frame.


Selections (8) Royal Smarty (7) Love Race (11) Prime Queen (1) Huimang Star
Next Best 5, 4
Fast Start 5, 6, 7, 11

Seoul Race 4: Class 6 (1700M) Allowance / KRW 24 Million

(12) GOLD LEVEL beat three of these on her way to 3rd place over 1300M three weeks ago. She steps up to racing around two turns for the first time today and it could well suit. (3) CHEONI AEGA too goes up in trip after a couple of promising displays at shorter. She’s run on well each time and the additional distance can be in her favour. (7) WIND SKY was one of those behind Gold Level last start and similarly may find the extra furlongs to his benefit. Among those who have raced at this distance already, (4) PUER SPES has a 3rd and a 4th at it and should be looking to match those today. (1) IRON HEART looks best of the rest.

Selections (12) Gold Level (3) Cheonji Aega (4) Puer Spes (7) Wind Sky
Next Best 1, 10
Fast Start 7, 8, 10, 11

Seoul Race 5: Class 4 (1700M) Allowance / KRW 60 Million

It’s been a while since (5) LIVINGSTONE’s solitary win but he’s had a string of near misses and comes in following a runner-up finish behind the promising Dokdo Ya at this distance on August 11th. He likes to lead, and this time may not be caught late on. (1) DAECHEON ACE ran 3rd behind Livingstone last start and while he has nine-lengths to make up on that performance, he is one of the main dangers here. A more credible threat though is (10) VICTORY KING, beaten by Livingstone two starts back but a very good class and distance 2nd on his latest outing. (6) MENI SMART and (9) RAON DOLPUNG are others in at least the placing frame.

Selections (5) Livingstone (10) Victory King (6) Meni Smart (1) Daecheon Ace
Next Best 9, 7
Fast Start 2, 3, 5,6

Busan Race 2: Class 4 (1000M) Handicap / KRW 60 Million 

Very competitive race. (9) EURO SHINHWA Is the very slight pick having beaten a couple of these on his was to a fast win over the distance at domestic class 4 at the beginning of August. He doesn’t need to lead from the start so the wide draw is not a concern and he can finish strongly. (7) YEONGGWANGUICHEON beat Euro Shinhwa when winning over this distance at class 5 in June and while he has been a touch below expectations in two starts since, can be a threat today. (8) YEONGSEONG STAR is another who has beaten Euro Shinhwa recently and should be better back at the minimum trip today. (3) HALLA HWANGHU and (5) RISING BOY are others to take into account.

Selections (9) Euro Shinhwa (8) Yeongseong Star (7) Yeonggwanguicheon (3) Halla Hwanghu
Next Best 5, 6
Fast Start 3, 4, 7, 8

Seoul Race 6: Class 4 (1200M) Handicap / KRW 60 Million

Another wildly competitive affair. (7) JEONGSANG STAR has won her latest two, the latter a dead-heat, to be rapidly promoted to this level. She’ll be competitive here, but this is significantly tougher, and others are favoured. (4) GEOM HYANG also found herself up at this class after back to back wins and ran a good 5th on her first crack at it on August 11th with the margins narrow. She can go very close today. So can (5) I.B.S.QUEEN. She has plenty of experience at this level and comes in following a solid 3rd place over 1000M three weeks ago. She’ll be on pace here. (9) SEMYEONG GISANG was a four-length winner over 1300M at this class on July 7th and while he carries significantly more weight today, he warrants respect. (2) GULCHARMNAMUSUP looks best of the rest.

Selections (5) I.B.S.Queen (4) Geom Hyang (7) Jeongsang Star (9) Semyeong Gisang
Next Best 2, 10
Fast Start 5, 9, 10, 11

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

(1) POWER AMAZING beat a couple of these on his way to 3rd place over 1800M on August 16th.  He’s back to a mile today, a distance he has won at before, he should be on speed from the inside gate, and he can win. (8) BOBAE DREAM ran 4th, just a length and a half behind Power Amazing in that race. She too goes well at a mile and is firmly in the hunt here. (9) SINBIHAN YEOIN tackles the distance for the first time following a good win over 1300M three weeks ago. (6) YEONGGWANGUI FIGHT was 3rd in that race and both look competitive in this company.

Selections (1) Power Amazing (8) Bobae Dream (9) Sinbihan Yeoin  (6) Yeonggwangui Fight
Next Best 6, 4
Fast Start 1, 3, 4

Seoul Race 7: Class Open (1200M) Weight for Age – The Korea Sprint / KRW 1 Billion

A full field of sixteen will line up in what is expected to be a very wet Seoul track to tackle the 1200M of the Sprint. Hong Kong’s SUPER JOCKEY won the inaugural race in 2016 while the Japanese pair of GRACEFUL LEAP and MOANIN took the honours in 2017 and 2018 respectively. There are no Japanese runners this time around and while Hong Kong does return, this looks the best chance yet for the locals to notch a win.

Six internationals are out to stop them. (5) HOLY LEGAL is the first overseas filly or mare to participate in the race. She’s spent most of her career racing in South America but has more than held her own since relocating to the USA. She has a blistering turn of foot and her experience on track surfaces similar to Seoul’s may help her here.

(3) FAST PASS has shipped in looking very well and is a prolific winner. Like Holy Legal, he can come from off the pace, he’s drawn well, and they will certainly be going quick up (more…)