There is a heavyweight collision at Seoul on Sunday as Moonhak Chief and Tiz Plan, two of the top three horses at the track, square off for the second time this year. The pair will clash in the feature and finale race 15 over 2000M. Sadly nobody will be there to see it but punters located in the south of the country will at least be able to attend betting branches. Seoul and Gyeonggi Province remain shuttered. There are 15 Sunday races at Seoul from 10:45 to 18:00:
Race 1: Class 6 (1200M) Allowance / KRW 22 Million
Fillies only in the opener. (12) GANGSEO PRINCESS beat several of these on her way to an easy victory on debut over the 1000M on January 29th. She steps up in trip and has a less favourable gate today but the manner of that win suggests that the result will be the same and she will be the hot favourite here. (1) NONGBON BADA and (2) MAGIC TIDE both ran 3rd on their respective debuts in January. In the case of Nongbon Bada it was behind Gangseo Princess so that brings her straight into contention again while Magic Tide ran on strong in a good time and should go well with the extra furlong today. Already experienced at this distance is (7) MACH JIJON. She ran an on pace 2nd in a good time over the trip on January 29th, her best finish to date and can build on it here.
|Selections||(12) Gangseo Princess (2) Magic Tide (1) Nongbon Bada (7) Mach Jijon|
|Next Best||14, 4|
|Fast Start||1, 5, 7, 8, 12|
Race 2: Class 6 (1200M) Allowance / KRW 22 Million
(6) EAST IMPACT was a sixteen-length winner on debut posting one of the fastest times ever recorded at the distance at class 6. It was impressive and while it would only be natural for there to be a slight dip in performance second time around, if he runs anything near like that again, then frankly the rest could start now and he’d still win. The only other previous winner in the race is (1) DREAM PELLA and he’s the one to take advantage should something happen to the favourite. He made all for his win over the distance in December and while his 5th on reappearance in January was nothing to write home about, he should get on pace from the inside. (3) SWEET JUICE BAR was 4th – about half a furlong – behind East Impact on debut and has placing claims here while first-time starter (7) BLUE HAMMER caught the eye in trials and can go well first-up today.
|Selections||(6) East Impact (1) Dream Pella (7) Blue Hammer (3) Sweet Juice Bar|
|Next Best||8, 10|
|Fast Start||1, 6|
Race 3: Class 6 (1300M) Allowance / KRW 22 Million
The betting market will be a little bit more competitive in this one with no clear standout. A couple of them look potentially ready to win though. Likely favourite is (2) THUNDER CHAMP. He ran on well for 2nd – a distant 2nd but well clear of 3rd place – to East Impact on what was for him start number three on January 29th. He steps up marginally in trip here but won’t need to improve much to have very good claims. (8) EAST JILJU ran an improved 3rd on what was his second start at the end of January, beating a couple of these in the process. He ran on strongly and the extra half furlong today keeps him right in the mix with an apprentice also keeping the weight low. (14) BIG RED could only manage 6th at the distance last start but it was by no means a bad run in what was a good race. He should be there or thereabouts. (3) BOGO TTO BOGO and (7) GEOSEN JILPUNG are others in the minor money hunt.
|Selections||(2) Thunder Champ (8) East Jilju (14) Big Red (3) Bogo Tto Bogo|
|Next Best||7, 13|
|Fast Start||2, 3, 11, 14|
Race 4: Class 6 (1300M) Allowance / KRW 22 Million
Fillies only here. (14) FASHIONED PASSION has drawn the car park but could well overcome it. The filly has improved across three starts so far and has the fastest final furlong average time of all of these. She moves up by half a furlong today and it could well suit with Moon Se Young climbing aboard for the first time. (1) SERVE ACE beat three of these on her way to 3rd place at this distance on January 29th recording by some margin the fastest time of those who have tackled the 1300M before. Munro can be patient from the inside here and she can run on strong. (3) MISS YANGHO was 4th behind Serve Ace last time out. She is one of only two previous winners in the field and will warrant respect again here. (2) GANGHWA CHEONYEO has shown signs of figuring things out across her latest couple of runs and can go close while (11) GREEN POKJU has been inconsistent but should be on pace here and can be involved at the business end.
|Selections||(14) Fashioned Passion (1) Serve Ace (3) Miss Yangho (11) Green Pokju|
|Next Best||2, 5|
|Fast Start||6, 10, 11, 13|
Race 5: Class 6 (1400M) Allowance / KRW 22 Million
With two wins to her name already (9) USORYUNG gets a third crack at class 6 and is the one to beat again. True, she hasn’t race – or even trialed – since last November, but she has proven capable of leading and of coming from off the pace and with Munro riding, her credentials are burnished even more. She’ll be favourite but a vulnerable one. (5) COLJOY comes in off a smart 3rd ahead of a number of these on January 29th over 1400M. In the process he recorded the fastest time among those here who have tackled the distance and he should provide a stern challenge. (6) NUBIGO and (1) SAENAE CHOICE came home 4th and 5th respectively in the same race and both have claims to match or better that here while (2) COWBOY TANGO could only manage 7th that day but along with Usoryung is the only one of these to have experienced victory before and can’t be discarded.
|Selections||(9) Usoryung (5) Coljoy (1) Saenae Choice (2) Cowboy Tango|
|Next Best||6, 11|
|Fast Start||1, 4, 5, 11|
Race 6: Class 6 (1400M) Allowance / KRW 22 Million
Maidens here and (4) BEST STORM has improved across the course of six starts to date, culminating in 2nd place on January 22nd at this distance in a superior time to what any of these have managed to date. A similar performance here can see him home on top. The main danger looks to be (13) POWER DOLPUNG. He beat three of these on his way to 3rd place at the distance on January 29th adding to a 5th and another 3rd in his prior too starts. He likes to be on pace so the draw may not be ideal but he can go close. (7) THUNDER HORSE wan 4th in that same race continuing a run of consistent performances and he looks to have placing claims today. (2) DREAM MAX is better than his showing in that same race suggested and can improve today while (11) DAEWANGU is another on the up who could go close.
|Selections||(4) Best Storm (13) Power Dolpung (11) Daewangu (2) Dream Max|
|Next Best||7, 12|
|Fast Start||8, 11, 12, 13|
Race 7: Class 5 (1400M) Handicap / KRW 32 Million
(7) CHALLENGE SOCKS may not have the most impressive results on paper but her last start effort at class and distance when beating several of these on her way to 3rd place in a good time from a wide draw are enough to warrant sending her off as favourite here. This is a really strong race for the level though. (1) SET THE PACE beat Challenge Socks two starts back and while she tries the distance for the first time is well drawn on the inside and can go close. So too can (12) CHEONHAE GANGJA came from well off the pace two starts back to win well over 1200M before running 2nd at this distance at the end of January. He can run on strong here and is in contention. (11) ON POINT is somewhat unexposed and is up in class here but could go well. (13) MIR CAPTAIN up in class following a win at the distance is another who should be in the hunt.
|Selections||(7) Challenge Socks (13) Mir Captain (12) Cheonhae Gangja (11) On Point|
|Next Best||1, 2|
|Fast Start||1, 7, 13, 14|
Race 8: Class 4 (1400M) Handicap / KRW 42 Million
(6) JOEUNGIRL is a winner of three from four so far and has clocked some impressive times over the 1200M, generally making all. She is up in both class and distance today but is well drawn to lead once more and will likely start favourite. It won’t be easy though. (3) RAON WILLIAMS and (5) LUISA came home 2nd and 4th respectively when they raced each other at class and distance on January 29th and both are capable of running very good times over 1400M. We’re going to side with the super consistent Luisa to overturn the favourite here. Others are in the hunt as well. (9) TK DAY came from well back to run a smart 2nd over 1200M in an all-filly affair in January. Previous tries at this distance haven’t been successful but she did run 5th in last year’s Korean Oaks and she looks like she is ready for another crack. (4) BAEKSAN THUNDER was 4th behind TK Day last start. The time before she was a good winner over 1300M and should be on pace right from the start here.
|Selections||(5) Luisa (6) Joeungirl (9) TK Day (3) Raon Williams|
|Next Best||4, 7|
|Fast Start||4, 5, 6, 11|
Race 9: Class 2 (1400M) Handicap / KRW 60 Million
The 2019 Korean Derby winner (12) WONDERFUL FLY returns to action for the first time since last June here but while he trialed up satisfactorily, we are going to take a watching brief here. Moon Se Young rode him both in that Derby and in the recent trial but opts to stick with (4) RAYMOND here and the Whywhywhy entire enters in decent form with a 2nd and a 3rd from his latest two and looks good for at least another place here. In both those races, Raymond was beaten by others who go again here. They are (10) DAEGUN CHEONHA and (11) BLUE CHITON and both are in the hunt here. The pick though is (3) DIXIE AGAIN. A gate to wire winner at the end of January in a very fast time (albeit assisted by a fast track) over this distance, he is up in class here but very nicely weighted, very nicely drawn and very much the one to beat.
|Selections||(3) Dixie Again (4) Raymond (10) Daegun Cheonha (11) Blue Chiton|
|Next Best||5, 12|
|Fast Start||3, 8, 10, 12|
Race 10: Class 5 (1200M) Handicap / KRW 32 Million
(14) GUEOKMAAL has only raced twice registering an easy win followed by 2nd place in a super race for the level in a great time. Those two things together suggest that regardless of having drawn the widest gate, she is the one to beat here. (4) BIG PLAN likes the 1200M and compared with her last two starts, she has drawn ideally today and can lead. She will certainly be in the mix this time. (5) EODIGANA races for the first time since winning at start number two back in November. She is up in class here but Moon Se Young remains aboard and she ran well in a trial last week. (13) MAGIC PLAN has finished no worse than 4th in six outings prior to today. She has beaten a number of these along the way as well and at the very least should be maintaining her consistent record today.
|Selections||(14) Gueokmaal (4) Big Plan (5) Eodigana (13) Magic Plan|
|Next Best||11, 3|
|Fast Start||4, 8, 9, 14|
Race 11: Class 4 (1200M) Handicap / KRW 42 Million
(10) FIRE HEART is two for two having won both outings in emphatic fashion last summer. He hasn’t raced since last August and returns up in class today. He looked well when running 2nd in a January trial. He may well win this but the layoff and the wider draw give us pause. (11) DREAM PO RE has overcome wide draws before. He is an on pace galloper who is capable of running very good times and has never been worse than 3rd in six starts. Placed in this class already, he has a good apprentice claiming 3kg and he looks the one to beat. (7) CHOEGANGMA will need a pass on her latest effort but if we go back to the time before that we find a close 3rd at class and distance. She’s been on pace in her last three starts and at her best she can be competitive here. (3) DREAM MONEY and (14) SUPER LUCKY BOY, both behind Dream Po Re last time out, are others in at least the placing frame.
|Selections||(11) Dream Po Re (10) Fire Heart (14) Super Lucky Boy (7) Choegangma|
|Next Best||3, 6|
|Fast Start||1, 7, 9, 11|
Race 12: Class 4 (1200M) Handicap / KRW 42 Million
(10) JANGSAN START returned after four months out to run 2nd at class and distance in December. He was handy in the run and ran on strong and while he has had another three months off since, he could well be hard to beat first-up here. (3) NANEUN STAR is yet to win but has placed three times at 1300M or shorter. Disregard last effort over 1400M, she is well drawn here and capable of going close. (6) JANGSAN GOLD is consistent and is worthy of consideration here. She was 4th last time when coming from midfield and has previously run well on pace. She’s got a nice draw today and looks set to be in the finish. (7) RACE ROYAL ran 5th when debuting in that same race. She took a while to settle and then came from a long way back. The blinkers go on today and a more mature performance can see her get closer. Back down in trip, (5) MOONHAK SKY should be right in this too.
|Selections||(10) Jangsan Start (3) Naneun Star (6) Jangsan Gold (7) Race Royal|
|Next Best||5, 2|
|Fast Start||1, 11, 13, 14|
Race 13: Class 3 (1200M) Handicap / KRW 50 Million
(4) CHOEGANG TEAM remains potential unfulfilled and what he needs is a string of races. He could finally be getting that now and after a showing over 1400M that we’ll draw a line through back in January, he comes back down to his best trip today and from a good draw has an excellent opportunity to show what he can do. We’ll put him on top but he won’t be favourite. That will be (11) GO UP. She finished 5th in that fast 1400M ahead of Choegang Team in January continuing a very good run of form that has seen her rack up three wins from eight starts. She also finished 2nd in a big race for fillies and mares in December and has plenty of class about her. (14) LUCKY BEOPJEON doesn’t know how to run a bad race, being unplaced just twice out of ten starts. A good winner last time his style is to be handy and he’ll be in the finish here. (6) GAON FORCE and (7) TAKTUEIN, the latter 4th in a super time last start at the distance, are others in the hunt.
|Selections||(4) Choegang Team (11) Go Up (14) Lucky Beopjeon (7) Taktuein|
|Next Best||6, 9|
|Fast Start||4, 7, 10, 11, 14|
Race 14: Class 4 (1800M) Allowance / KRW 42 Million
(10) BERRING MAN placed at his only start around two turns so far when he raced handy to the lead. It was a big improvement and that, combined with Alan Munro remaining aboard, is enough to put him firmly in the mix here. (6) JANGSAN TANK’s last run was better than it appears when beaten by Berring Man. From barrier twelve, he was caught wide early then pulled in the back straight staying wide before running on fairly late on. Today’s draw should help his chances and Moon Se Young aboard certainly doesn’t harm his prospects. (2) SIMPLE STYLE has run some fair races over 1300M. At his last start at 1400M he was back in the field and ran on wide in the straight which suggests the distance may suit from a good barrier. (4) J.S. GUNJU and (8) ELITE LINE are among others in the hunt.
|Selections||(10) Berring Man (6) Jangsan Tank (2) Simple Style (8) Elite Line|
|Next Best||4, 5|
|Fast Start||2, 4, 7, 13|
Race 15: Class 1 (2000M) Handicap / KRW 70 Million
(6) MOONHAK CHIEF is the one to beat again having defeated many of these on his way to his third straight victory on January 29th. He carried 60kg that day and was dominant. The leading stayer in Korea, he should be too good again. (11) TIZ PLAN drops 3kg on that January race when he was six-lengths behind Moonhak Chief. This should bring him closer today although the wide barrier compared to his rival will need to be overcome. Tiz Plan and Johan Victoire eventually got the better of Cheongdam Dokki after a couple of duels last summer but Moonhak Chief at the moment is perhaps on a slightly different level. (3) BRIGADIER GENERAL is ultra-consistent and won on his first go at class 1 in a good time. This is a quantum leap in difficulty but keep an eye on him. (9) THE GUMPU is another up and comer. He managed a 3rd last start behind Moonhak Chief and Tiz Plan, leading early and not capitulating in the straight. The days of (5) SHAMROCKER being a nailed on 3rd in races like this may be over but it would be a surprise if he missed the money completely.
|Selections||(6) Moonhak Chief (11) Tiz Plan (3) Brigadier General (9) The Gumpu|
|Next Best||5, 1|
|Fast Start||1, 6, 9, 11, 13|