Racing got underway at Busan on Friday and the behind-closed-doors action moves to Seoul on Saturday with a 15-race card from 10:45 to 18:00. The ponies on Jeju will also resume. Here are the previews:
Race 1: Class 6 (1000M) Allowance / KRW 40 Million
A field of twelve three-year-olds all having their first start will kick off proceedings as we return to Seoul for the first time in over four months. (5) GRACE QUEEN clocked a reasonable trial mid last month when running second. The filly coasted through the line nicely and wasn’t fully extended suggesting if she can find a few more lengths she will take some running down. The trial of (7) TEUNTEUNA was better than it looked to the naked eye. The Rock Hard Ten colt was beaten by a big margin but did clock a competitive time for this grade. Expect further improvement on the trial. (8) CAREER HIGH is worth considering in your selections. The Any Given Saturday filly ran midfield in her heat but ran through the line fairly, she will get the services of leading rider Moon Se-young. (1) GEORGE QUEEN won her trial but they dawdled early in the heat. The filly also hung out badly down the straight. She should be better for the run both physically and mentally.
|Selections||(5) Grace Queen (7) Teunteuna (8) Career High (1) George Queen|
|Next Best||2, 4|
|Fast Start||1, 5|
Race 2: Class 6 (1200M) Allowance / KRW 40 Million
Three-year-old maidens here with five of the twelve making their belated racecourse debuts. We’re going to go with one of those first-timers, (6) WINNER QUARDRILLE. The Gold Allure filly initially won a trial in January and then went through another in April where she gave champion Silver Wolf a good workout, running home 2nd in a useful time and if she brings that form to the races today, she can win. Also showing ability in trials was Luigi Riccardi’s (7) CHOEGO CAMP, a front-running winner of her heat in March and with every chance of going well first-up under Johan Victoire. As for those with experience, (2) FIGHTING NOW is a bit of an enigma. He ran well for 2nd on debut last October which led to him being sent off at odds-on for his reappearance in November. He got a bad trip and ended up in 7th which we will forgive, but he didn’t exactly impress in a March trial either so while he evidently has some talent, caution is required. (11) BURNING POINT and (12) SONGAM PLAYER both have 3rd places to their names and both performed a little better in their respective recent trials, although both have drawn closer to the car park than the rails.
|Selections||(6) Winner Quardrille (12) Songam Player (7) Choego Camp (2) Fighting Now|
|Next Best||11, 8|
|Fast Start||3, 7, 8|
Race 3: Class 6 (1200M) Allowance / KRW 25 Million
Twelve Korean-bred gallopers line up in the third event all looking for their first win. (10) THUNDER K looks one of the main chances. The chestnut finished fourth on debut in December last year in a handy two-year-old event. The colt trialled in April clocking a good time on a dry track suggesting he is ready to fire first up. (8) BANGJU showed some improvement at his second start in January. The Into Mischief gelding hit the line fairly to finish third behind Songam Tiz. Whilst not the strongest form line this race is of similar strength. (11) GANA PARK debuts after a solid trial effort to finish second. She was beaten five lengths in the trial but clocked 62.8 on a dry track which will see her competitive in this event. (3) BALBATU lines up for his third career start. The Hansen colt placed at his most recent run before the racing hiatus over 1000m. The chestnut passed a few in the straight hitting the line well suggesting he will appreciate the 1200m for the first time.
|Selections||(10) Thunder K (8) Bangju (11) Gana Park (3) Balbatu|
|Next Best||12, 6|
|Fast Start||10, 11, 12|
Race 4: Class 6 (1300M) Allowance / KRW 40 Million
Three-year-old fillies only for this maiden. (6) GLORY FIGHTER was sent off the odds-on favourite for what was her second start in January. She took a bump at the start and then hung inwards late on ultimately finishing in 3rd place. She didn’t impress when trialing in April but didn’t do too much wrong either and can be given another chance today. A more impressive recent trailer was (10) BLUE K. She’s shown plenty of speed as well, especially when running 3rd on what was her most recent racecourse appearance last October. The engagement of Kim Yong Geun is a plus and she’ll surely be a big factor. (12) OLD BLADE is one of very few horses at Seoul not to have trialed during the shutdown. She put in two solid if unspectacular performances around the turn of the year registering a 4th and a 3rd and can aim to match or better that here. (5) CHEONGDAM YEOGEOL also did nothing wrong on her debut last December and can push on today.
|Selections||(10) Blue K (6) Glory Fighter (5) Cheongdam Yeogeol (12) Old Blade|
|Next Best||7, 9|
|Fast Start||1, 10|
Race 5: Class 6 (1300M) Allowance / KRW 25 Million
An even group of maiden Korean-bred gallopers will face the starter in the fifth. The race record of (11) CLEAN HEART does not read all that well to date but his trial suggests there may be improvement to come. The Artie Schiller colt clocked 62 seconds flat on a dry track and crossed the line with some handy types. The three-year-old was pushed out but ran it out strong and with fresh legs looks to be some value over the 1300m first up. (5) SANARAE is the most experience galloper in the race with eight starts under her belt. She has just the one minor placing from the eight starts but it did come over this distance towards the end of last year. She trialled in reasonable fashion in May where she finished third but appeared green when running up the straight. She gets one of her easiest assignments to date. Korean punters have sent (6) HANSEN CHOICE to the gates numerous times at a short quote and done their money every time. With no betting in Korea this weekend it would salt in the wound if the chestnut was to get up. She showed little in her trial but has previously showed ability over the short course and hence she is being included on a place line. (12) TYCHE FIRE looks the interesting galloper engaged from an improvement point of view. The Indie Band colt finished well back on debut in February but his trial in May was solid considering he was off the track throughout and still clocked 62.3 seconds on a dry track. The draw will do him no favours but he could be one that improves. This is a hard race and the likes of (3) THE BEAST, (7) GOLDEN SWITCH and (9) BIANCA could fill a place without surprising.
|Selections||(11) Clean Heart (5) Sanarae (6) Hansen Choice (12) Tyche Fire|
|Next Best||3, 9|
|Fast Start||3, 5, 6, 8|
Race 6: Class 6 (1400M) Allowance / KRW 25 Million
Just the one first-timer starter amongst this field of maidens but he looks useful. (8) E STRIKE ran on well across two trials and 1400M should suit first up. Jockey booking a plus and he has claims to start his career in the best possible way. (11) TOP SEED has a 2nd place to his name at this distance already and he has looked well in two very solid trial performances during the hiatus. He’ll go back at the start so the wide draw is no issue and he’ll run through the line strongly. Also with experience of the distance and also untroubled by the wide draw is (12) THE DREAM. He finished 4th to Top Seed’s 3rd when they raced each other at this distance on early February and he can get close once again today. It looks an open race beyond those with perhaps (1) YAHO M J CAT and (2) HAPPY MONTH being best of the rest although there is a lack of speed engaged so if something like (4) SIN ROK, who has at least shown some ability from the gate, could get an easy lead, then he may go close.
|Selections||(11) Top Seed (8) E Strike (12) The Dream (2) Happy Month|
|Next Best||1, 3, 4|
|Fast Start||4, 11|
Race 7: Class 5 (1200M) Handicap / KRW 40 Million
Some progressive types line up in the seventh on the card where there is a host of winning chances. (3) ICE PUNCH was flying before the Covid hiatus scoring a dominant six length victory over the 1200m, which they line up over once again in this event. The dapple grey then did everything right in a barrier trial in April when overcoming a wide gate working to the front and winning under his own steam. The colt looks ready to fire first up and gets the services of Seoul’s leading rider in Moon Se-young. (2) GREAT KHAN is another who broke maiden status just before the racing hiatus. The Menifee colt clocked a good time when winning by a clear margin over the five furlongs. The query (more…)