The final race day of the year at Seoul (Busan races next weekend) takes place on Sunday with a bumper 15-race card from 10:45 to 18:00. Features will be the Cargill Agri Purina Trophy (race 9) and the Trainers’ Cup (race 12):
Race 1: Class 6 (1000M) Allowance / KRW 40 Million
Twelve maiden juveniles go round here with three of them racing for the very first time. (9) HIGH WONDERFUL has the best finish to his name, having run 2nd to Global Thunder on debut A month ago. He’ll be on pace here and has winning claims. (1) NUMBER ONE TARGET actually ran a faster time when 5th on her own debut on November 16th. The Hansen filly beat High Wonderful in an October trial and has every chance of besting him again. (8) NEVER WALK ALONE was a close 6th behind Number One Target in that race last month and is another who can improve here. As for the first-timers., it’s taken (12) ALCHAN NURI four trials to make it to the races – he actually did on one occasion but threw his jockey off during the post parade and was a late scratching – but he certainly looked ready based on the latest of those, just last week, when he two of the others who go here. He can go well first-up.
Selections: (1) Number One Target (9) High Wonderful (12) Alchan Nuri (8) Never Walk Alone
Next Best: 11, 5
Fast Start: 10, 11
Race 2: Class 6 (1300M) Allowance / KRW 60 Million
More juvenile maidens going round here, once more with three of the twelve making their racecourse debuts. The only one who has raced twice so far is (4) MONEY SILK and he will be a leading fancy here. After finishing 4th on debut in October, he improved to 2nd on his reappearance, beating a number of his rivals here in the process. They were all debuting so have scope for improvement here too, but the extra distance should suit, and he can win. Both (7) ALPHA DOK and (10) JOY BROTHER posted faster times than Money Silk when running 5th and 4th on their respective debuts. They too should appreciate the extra 300M that they have to play with here and are likely to go close. (1) GREEN MOUNTAIN and (8) HWA SSI BYEOK are two others who showed promise first-up and can come into the reckoning here.
Selections: (4) Money Silk (10) Joy Brother (1) Green Mountain (8) Hwa Ssi Byeok
Next Best:7, 11
Fast Start: 1, 4, 8, 9
Race 3: Class 6 (1300M) Allowance / KRW 24 Million
Maidens once more although this time it isn’t restricted to the juveniles. (5) WONDER K is the pick having returned six months after his debut to run a solid 2nd at this distance on November 11th. He was a front-runner that day and will aim to do the same here and should have the beating of this limited set of opponents. There are one or two other promising ones though. (12) EAST ONE looks the clear second-best with a 4th and a 2nd in two tries, both over 1000M. He needs to overcome the wide draw here but should get close. (10) SIN ROK was a somewhat unexpected improver last time out, leading for much of the race on a muddy track over 1300M before eventually dropping to 3rd. He warrants being sent off considerably shorter than the 190/1 he was that day. (4) KING KANMOREU is another who looks to be going the right way development-wise and can build on the 5th he secured last start on his first try at this distance. (11) SUPER ECTON is perhaps best of the rest
Selections: (5) Wonder K (12) East One (4) King Kanmoreu (10) Sin Rok
Next Best: 11, 3
Fast Start: 2, 3, 6
Race 4: Class 6 (1300M) Allowance / KRW 40 Million
A filly only maiden here and of the twelve, the one who looks readiest to win is (3) WONDERFUL PLEASURE. She’s shown steady progress across four prior starts culminating in 2nd place last start behind Virtus. That was in late October so she’s had a bit of time off and from gate 3 can sit near the pace and launch a strong challenge late on. (6) MAD DIVA similarly starts for the fifth time today and has been showing decent consistency. She went well at this distance last time out and should be in the hunt for some money today. So should (5) GIANT GIRL, who tackles the distance for the first time following a solid 4th over 1000M a month ago when she ran through the line pleasingly enough. (1) HAWK ARIRANG is the most experienced in the race and while that’s not a good thing in a maiden affair, she showed a bog uptick in form when 2nd on November 23rd and can maintain her momentum here. (7) DIECO hasn’t done much wrong in her latest two and is another with potential to challenge for at least a place.
Selections: (3) Wonderful Pleasure (6) Mad Diva (5) Giant Girl (1) Hawk Arirang
Next Best: 7, 8
Fast Start: 3, 7, 8
Race 5: Class 5 (1000M) Handicap / KRW 40 Million
One of the firmest favourites on the card goes around in race 5. (2) JOEUN GAMUN got promoted to this level with an easy win two starts back at this distance before running 2nd on three weeks ago. He raced a little ungenerously that day but with slightly better manners here, he will surely take some beating and jockey Masa Tanaka can ride a final- day winner for his second stint in Korea. (6) MENI STAND had a bit of a shocker when sent out as favourite two weeks ago, scarcely being involved and finishing well back in the pack. He’s better than that though and can be given another chance to find the places here. (8) HALLA BLOSSOM remains a maiden but finds himself up in class following back to back runner-up finishes. She looks to have improvement in here and can be competitive at this level. (3) HIGH BEAT also enters of two 2nd place finishes in his latest two outings, in his case both at this class. He should be on the early pace and while he will need to improve if he is to challenge the favourite, can certainly aim for at least a place. A couple of others have minor money chances with (9) GREY KINGDOM perhaps the most credible.
Selections: (2) Joeun Gamun (6) Meni Stand (3) High Beat (8) Halla Blossom
Next Best: 9, 12
Fast Start: 2, 3, 6, 8
Race 6: Class 5 (1300M) Handicap / KRW 40 Million
(6) HWANGGEUM HAE has a win and two runner-up finishes from three starts so far and having run 2nd to the useful looking Legend Storm in the latest of those, surely comes in as favourite for this. He can set up camp close to the pace and should be too strong in the closing stages. (1) PSYCHIC BOSS had a nightmare from start to finish when favourite at class and distance, jumping out awkwardly, failing to get his preferred forward position, and then weakening badly in the home straight. We’ll draw a line through that and from the inside gate, he has a better chance of getting to the front and if he can do that, he surely goes much better. (3) GAROSUGIL was a nice winner on debut at this distance three weeks ago and while this is a significantly stiffer assignment, he can improve himself and be in at least the placing frame here. (4) JEONGSEONG HOLIDAY is also up in class following a maiden score of his own and looks well equipped to be competitive at this level. (5) ROYAL BOKSUNI has plenty of experience at this level and is another in with a shot of the minors.
Selections: (6) Hwanggeum Hae (1) Psychic Boss (3) Garosugil (4) Jeongseong Holiday
Next Best: 5, 10
Fast Start: 1, 3, 4, 6
Race 7: Class 5 (1300M) Allowance / KRW 40 Million
Three of these are up in class following last start maiden wins and of them (10) SAENAE SPURT looks well placed to repeat. His win had been coming and he arrived from off the pace to win comfortably over this distance. This is tougher but he can come through it. It looks a more difficult ask for the other two up in class, (1) JEJUI YOJEONG and (11) GOLD PARK, so we will look elsewhere for our principal dangers. (4) BARAMUI MISO and (5) LUCKY MIDAS are the prime candidates with both entering having run 4th in similar strength races to this in their respective last starts. Baramui Miso remains a maiden but is rarely far away and drops back in trip following a decent effort over 1700M three weeks ago. Lucky Midas is another consistent type who we can expect to see on the speed from the start. (9) TANK SOCKS is still lightly raced and after a somewhat surprising maiden win in September has held her own in two efforts at this level. She steps up in trip for the first time today and could make for an interesting outsider.
Selections: (10) Saenae Spurt (4) Baramui Miso (5) Lucky Midas (9) Tank Socks
Next Best: 1, 11
Fast Start: 5, 6, 8, 9
Race 8: Class 4 (1000M) Handicap / KRW 60 Million
The favourites have drawn wide here but they can overcome in what is a nice looking handicap over the minimum distance. (11) EAST JET won his first two starts in blistering fashion before tackling the Gwacheon Mayor’s Cup over 1200M on November 23rd. He was sent off as second favourite but while he did show briefly at the right end of the race, he ultimately weakened for 6th. He drops back in trip today and looks hard to beat. (10) RAON TAP MAN has a win and two runner-up finishes from his three starts so far. The Musket Man gelding is up in class today but has great gate speed and if he gets to the front, he can cause the favourite some problems. So too can (12) K TOP KING. He too is up in class having registered his second win on four starts when making all over this distance on November 23rd. Naturally this is tougher, but he still looks to have improvement in him. (8) TK DAY hung outwards last time to the extent that she got sent back to trial. She came though that well and if she behaves herself this time, should get much closer. (2) GEUMSEONG YEOWANG is another in the placing hunt.
Selections: (11) East Jet (10) Raon Tap Man (12) K Top King (8) TK Day
Next Best: 2, 1
Fast Start: 9, 10, 11
Race 9: Class 4 (1000M) Handicap / KRW 60 Million
Twelve imported juveniles go around for a big prize here. Only three have raced more than once and three are appearing for the very first time. (1) PREEMAX was an excellent winner on debut in October before taking his chance in the Gwacheon Mayor’s Cup last month. He took a bump at the start and barely figured but back down at 1000M, should be a very different prospect today and can win. (5) CAPTAIN BULLET and (3) CUPID MISSION came home 2nd and 3rd when they raced each other over this distance on November 16th. For Captain Bullet it was his debut while for Cupid Mission, it was his second outing having won on his first appearance in October. Both should be dangerous here with Captain Bullet the slightly favoured of the pair again. Those three are the standouts although (9) MY ROMEO hasn’t done too much wrong in two starts so far. (2) ANYANG OXEN was very green on debut to the extent that he got sent back to trial. He requalified looking in much better order a couple of weeks ago and accordingly should be better today.
Selections: (1) Preemax (5) Captain Bullet (3) Cupid Mission (9) My Romeo
Next Best: 2, 4
Fast Start: 1, 3, 5, 9
Race 10: Class 4 (1300M) Handicap / KRW 60 Million
There is no standout favourite in the tenth with several chances engaged including some that have hit the ground running early in their careers. (4) GEUMBIT JANGIN has now won three races from four starts. His last start win when defeating Raon Khan was impressive, he sat second throughout before extending nicely in the straight. Tactics have been similar for all of his four starts, which suggest he will be ridden the same and given every chance of winning the race. (7) LEGEND STORM is another Korean-bred who is racing well. The two-year-old has won two from three starts including a win in Class 5 company last time out. He is well weighted in the race and should give a forward showing albeit a tougher race. (8) SOMETHING NOBODYNO ran a good race last start when they ran a fast time for the 1300m. Kim Jeong-Jun, who rides the colt again sat him on speed in the early part before finishing second behind Platinum Euro who has won all four of his starts. (3) HANSEN BAROWS is one that can improve after running fifth behind Delta Brother in similar company last start. In-form jockey Lee Hyeon-Jong will take over riding duties as normal rider Alan Munro is on holidays.
Selections (4) Geumbit Jangin (7) Legend Storm (8) Something Nobodyno (3) Hansen Barows
Next Best 5, 10
Fast Start 4, 5
Race 11: Class 4 (1700M) Handicap / KRW 60 Million
The eleventh sees a field of twelve face the starter where the majority of the speed is drawn central. As the start is so important from the 1700m, (4) STRETTO looks to map perfectly in this race. He ran honestly behind Roller Blade in the two-year-old features and the last start took care of a Class 5 field. The horse is nicely put together and looks a Korean-bred who has plenty of wins in him going forward. Park Jae-Woo has elected to step (3) J. S. GUNJU up from the 1000m straight into a 1700m at his fourth start. The two-year-old ran a brilliant time last start over the 1000m when clocking sub one minute. Punters should take faith in Park Jae-Woo that the horse will be ready for the stepup, he is lightly weighted as well with the claim of Kim Deok-Hyeon. (6) SMARTY ADELE ran a much-improved race last time out under the riding of Kim Yong-Geun. The Hansen filly is able to figure once again, expect her to work forward in the early stages once again. (5) BAEKSAEK GWANGCHAE saluted in Class 5 company last time out when overcoming a wide draw. Lee Dong-Ha urged to grey out of the gates to take up the lead and never be headed. This is tougher but the on-pace runner can hold on for some money.
Selections (4) Stretto (3) J. S. Gunju (6) Smarty Adele (5) Baeksaek Gwangchae
Next Best 2, 5
Fast Start 4, 5, 6
Race 12: Class 1 (1800M) Handicap / KRW 150 Million
The final class 1 race of the year is the Trainer’s Cup and it’s attracted a useful field of eleven. The pick is (8) SIMJANGUI GODONG, who saw his run of three straight wins come to an end when an excellent 3rd behind New Legend and Dokdo Jigi in the President’s up (KOR G1) last month. He led for the majority of that race and under a feather weight today can go all the way. (5) SAMSEONG BULPAE is a definite danger, coming in having scored a very good win at class and distance a couple of months ago. That was his first victory in some time but he’s rarely far away and it generally takes a good horse to beat him. (10) SPRING BACK is a very good horse, but he is more of a sprinter. Nevertheless, his class will probably see him to some prize money, just as it did on hi previous try at this distance. (1) CHEONGDAM JEWANG and (9) SUPER SOCKS are the other principal placing chance.
Selections: (8) Simjangui Godong (10) Spring Back (5) Samseong Bulpae (1) Cheongdam Jewang
Next Best: 9, 11
Fast Start: 8, 11
Race 13: Class 4 (1700M) Handicap / KRW 60 Million
The thirteenth on the card has a field of twelve to go over the two turns. (10) KING OF RULES looks hard to beat coming off a very consistent year of racing. His last eight runs have yielded one win, five seconds, and two thirds. He showed last time out that he can run a strong 1700m when finishing behind Simyeong Gisang. A big positive is he will have the services of Kim Yong-Geun who is riding sensationally. (8) MOONHAK EKATI comes out of the Gwacheon Mayor’s Cup when flying home to finish fourth behind Raon First against the two-year-olds. The US import looks to have many more wins in store and don’t let the wide draw deter you, he will get back and fly home. (1) PRIVATE MAN ran on well last start in a relatively strong Class 4 event. The colt appreciates time to find his feet after the start, so whilst the draw is good Lee Hyeon-Jong may not be able to use it to its full advantage. (3) WUJEONGUI HYANGGI is a class and distance winner two starts back. She was then handicapped with an additional 3kg and managed to finish fourth last time out. She’s racing honestly and can run into some money.
Selections (10) King Of Rules (8) Moonhak Ekati (1) Private Man (3) Wujeongui Hyanggi
Next Best 7, 5
Fast Start 5, 10
Race 14: Class 3 (1400M) Handicap / KRW 75 Million
The fourteenth race on the card is a brilliant race where there is plenty of up and comers going through their grades. (8) SPEEDOM looks hard to go past based on his last start second behind Raon First in the Gwacheon Mayors’s Cup. The Congrats gelding has had three starts yielding two wins and his second placing last start. Numerous rivals in this event come out of the same race where they were well beaten. (5) CAT’S MIRACLE has been racing well of late including a runner-up performance behind the handy Winner Brown last start. He looks a big threat with a perfect draw for his racing style. (11) PRO HAMSEONG has been racing well in this company placing at his past four starts. The three-year-old will be ridden by Lee Hyeon-Jong who continues to make a good impression on the racetrack. Pro Hamseong may be forced to settle further back than usual as he has drawn poorly and lacks early speed. In contrast expect (1) D K NARIN to be right on speed and with the lightweight run through the line well.
Selections (8) Speedom (5) Cat’s Miracle (11) Pro Hamseong (1) D K Narin
Next Best 10, 2
Fast Start 1, 2, 8
Race 15: Class 3 (1200M) Handicap / KRW 75 Million
They’ll go like scalded cats in the last with an abundance of speed engaged. One of the speedy types is the progressive (7) RUNNING BOX. The filly has won three from six starts including a last start win over the 1000m when clocking a minute flat for the five furlongs. She is proven over the 1200m when winning four starts back over the distance. She showed an element of versatility last time out when settling midfield before running on to win, suggesting she doesn’t have to lead at all costs. (10) NEUL PUREUN CAT is firing on all cylinders at the moment winning three of his past five and finishing second on the other two occasions. The draw is a concern, but he has been given good rides at his past two starts to overcome wide alleys. (4) RAON SERENA was stretched out to the 1700m last time out when feeling the pinch up the straight. The Hansen filly drops back to the 1200m which appears more suitable. She did finish second two starts back behind Something Mystery over 1200m. (3) SOMETHING MYSTERY ran on fairly last time out when carrying 55kg for the first time in quite a while. He drops 0.5kg and as a natural back marker will hit the line strong but may find it hard to reel in some of these handy types.
Selections (7) (10) (4) (3)
Next Best 8, 12
Fast Start 1, 2, 4, 8, 9