There is a treat in store in the very final race of the weekend as Cheongdam Dokki faces off with Morfhis over 1400M. The pair have the likes of Dia Road and Do Kki Blade also in attendance in what should be a thrilling climax to Sunday’s card at Seoul (10 races from 1:45 to 18:00). There is also a card at Busan (6 races from 12:05 to 17:00). Both racecourses are closed to spectators with only betting outlets in Jeju, Daegu, Gwangju, Cheonan and Changwon in operation. Here are the previews:
Seoul Race 1: Class 6 (1000M) Allowance / KRW 22 Million
Three-year-old maidens get the day underway and (1) NORWAY THIRD will be a hot favourite She was a fair 2nd on her only start to date when she worked her way around from a wide draw. She’s got the inside today and should prove hard to beat. (7) NONGBON BADA was 3rd on her debut at this distance back in January and while she could only manage 9th on her return at 1200M in March, the margins weren’t huge and back down in trip today she should be a factor. (11) NAMSAN CHOCOLATE too can have her last start disregarded when keen, wide and hampered on a wet track and should be better today. The other dangers look set to come from the first timer starters. Of them, (12) DONGHAENG looks the best having led for much of the way around in her trial before running solid 2nd in a good time. (2) BIG ENERGY and (10) LEGEND BOURSE could also go well first-up.
|Selections||(1) Norway Third (7) Nongbon Bada (11) Namsan Chocolate (12) Donghaeng|
|Next Best||2, 10|
|Fast Start||1, 6, 7, 11, 12|
Seoul Race 2: Class 6 (1200M) Allowance / KRW 22 Million
(3) THUNDER CHAMP is ready to win following two consecutive runner-up finishes. Last start he led easily over 1300M only to be grabbed on the line. He is nicely drawn again and should frank his good form with a maiden win. The betting market will no doubt reflect that so if you are inclined to take her on, (8) CINDERELLA may be the best chance. She was a good 2nd on debut and did little wrong when 6th over 1300M last start. She has her Prince Charming Antonio aboard and while she may well end up the ugly sister again, a trip to the ball doesn’t look to be too far in the future. (9) SMARTY TREM showed improvement on his second start and if he continues on that trajectory then he should be in the placing frame today. (1) BORAQUEEN and (2) JISANGUN are others in the minor money hunt.
|Selections||(3) Thunder Champ (8) Cinderella (9) Smarty Trem (1) Boraqueen|
|Next Best||2, 4|
|Fast Start||1, 3, 9, 12|
Seoul Race 3: Class 6 (1200M) Allowance / KRW 22 Million
(1) GREEN POKJU gets her chance here after a good run last start when she stumbled at the stat before working forward to be in a handy spot on battled on gamely. She comes into barrier 1 today and has a great chance. So too does (2) RED PINE. She’s run on very well for 3rd and 2nd in her last two starts. She is back to 1200M where she hasn’t done her best work but she looks sure to make her presence felt here and will be running on strong. (13) RULES CLASS has been a touch inconsistent across four starts to date but did beat three of these on his way to 2nd place last start at this distance. He may need a bit of luck from the outside gate but should be in the mix. (3) BLUE HAMMER ran a good 3rd on debut settling well back before powering home. A repeat of that run, even without any improvement should see him firmly in the placing frame. (11) NUBIGO looks best of the rest.
|Selections||(1) Green Pokju (2) Red Pine (13) Rules Class (3) Blue Hammer|
|Next Best||11, 5|
|Fast Start||1, 4, 10, 13|
Busan Race 1: Class 6 (1200M) Allowance / KRW 22 Million
Ten of these have raced once before, one of them once and three of them not at all. The only previous winner in the field is the one with two starts under her belt, (14) APRIL QUEEN. She scored on debut over 1000M but failed to follow up when well back over today’s distance on her return. Nevertheless, her experience does earn her some respect and she should be competitive. The favourites though will come from the first-time starters. (8) B J MISS caught the eye in trials. She ran 2nd to an experienced filly in a fast time and if she brings anything like that form to the races then she will be hard to beat. (10) RUN FIGHTER won his trial, running through the line well and looks the primary danger. Completing the trio of newcomers with chances is (9) TRIPLE JILJU, who wile a little slower than the other pair, was on pace throughout his heat and stayed on nicely. Returning to the prior experience ones, (2) ALIVE STAR did little on debut but has since trialed up twice and looks set to improve.
|Selections||(8) B J Miss (10) Run Fighter (14) April Queen (2) Alive Star|
|Next Best||9, 5|
|Fast Start||2, 7, 8, 9|
Seoul Race 4: Class 6 (1300M) Allowance / KRW 22 Million
(5) GHOST VILLAGE comes in following a solid 3rd place behind Raon Beat and Alpha Dok over 1400M. He faces nothing like the pair of them today and could well be the one to beat. (9) JOEUN GWANGYE made up a lot of ground last start to run 3rd at this distance. Disregarding the start before that when he was an impeded by a horse who had dislodged its jockey, he is yet to finish outside the top five and should be in the mix here. (6) GEUMA FLAWLESS has been finishing off his races well and may appreciate the slight increase in trip today. And looks a placing line while (8) STAR RUSH ran his best race to date last start when 3rd over 1200M. His times haven’t been especially quick but he’s by no means alone in that in this company. (2) SARANG DAMOA and (3) ACHILLION are others in the frame.
|Selections||(5) Ghost Village (9) Joeun Gwangye (6) Geuma Flawless (8) Star Rush|
|Next Best||2, 3|
|Fast Start||2, 3, 4, 6|
Busan Race 2: Class 6 (1600M) Allowance / KRW 22 Million
(3) GEUMBIT HAENGJIN did precisely nothing in her first three starts but upon being raised to a mile last time out, promptly raised her game and ran a very good 2nd. She doesn’t get an apprentice claim today but she does get Perovic and she looks the one to beat. The apprentice who rode her that day gets on the filly who ran 3rd, (10) TEAM SKY. She raced prominently throughout that day, sticking to her task well, and should be in mix again. (5) POKPUNG JILJU ran on strong though left it a bit late on debut over 1200M finishing in 5th. He should have come on for the run and the mile can suit more. (11) K K WON and (8) B J’S TERMS came home 3rd and 5th respectively when they raced each other at this trip on April 4th. Both should be competitive again with B J’s Terms, who was debuting that day, perhaps with the more scope for improvement.
|Selections||(3) Geumbit Haengjin (10) Team Sky (5) Pokpung Jilju (8) B J’s Terms|
|Next Best||11, 12|
|Fast Start||1, 3, 10, 12|
Seoul Race 5: Class 5 (1200M) Handicap / KRW 28 Million
No fewer than five last start winners go around in a hugely competitive race. (13) FASHIONED PASSION ran a terrific race last start when winning at class 6 over 1300M. He was handy but wide and ran on very strongly to be eased in the last 50 metres. He’s back in trip here and a real chance again. We’ll disregard the last start of (1) MAGIC PLAN when she was very wide from an outside barrier and instead go on her solid form at this class which includes a win at today’s distance as recently as December. She goes best when on pace and today’s barrier puts her right in the mix. (2) USORYUNG got back to back wins at class 6, winning in contrasting ways which showed her adaptability. She was 3rd behind (5) COLJOY over 1400M last start but dropping back to 1200M should enable her to overturn that form. (4) MOST SPEED, (6) FIGHTING DADDY and (10) TIZ BLACK are other leading contenders in a race in which at least a partial case can be made for every single runner.
|Selections||(13) Fashioned Passion (1) Magic Plan (2) Usoryung (6) Fighting Daddy|
|Next Best||4, 10|
|Fast Start||1, 4, 8, 10|
Busan Race 3: Class 5 (1400M) Handicap / KRW 28 Million
A small field of fillies and mares. (3) DOCTOR FAPPIANO is set to be hot favourite here. Having placed 2nd on debut, she ran out and emphatic all the way winner at start number two on March 20th over 1200M. She is up in both class and distance today but neither should be an issue and she should win again. (2) NEW LUX won back to back races over 1200M at class 6 level in December and January. She could only manage 6th when stepped up to 1400M for her first crack at this class in March but ran on well and should get closer today. (6) WISE GIRL is inconsistent but does have two wins to her name and she looks a placing line here while (7) LOOK SCAT and (9) FIRST STAR are others who can go close.
|Selections||(3) Doctor Fappiano (2) New Lux (6) Wise Girl (9) First Star|
|Next Best||7, 5|
|Fast Start||3, 5, 8, 9|
Seoul Race 6: Class 4 (1200M) Handicap / KRW 35 Million
(6) JANGSAN GOLD scored her maiden victory last time out on March 21st in fine style at class and distance. She led that day but is capable of sitting off the pace too which may be to her benefit in what is a stronger race with much more depth. (9) RACE ROYAL ran 2nd to Jangsan Gold coming from well back. She looks to have plenty of potential for more and with any luck in running, she’ll be in the calculations again. (12) MIGHTY BOOM and (5) GLOBAL JOY came home 1st and 2nd when they raced each other over 1400M on February 28th. Global Joy had won her previous two, both at 1400M, leading all the around and dropping back in trip she looks set to be favourite here although Mighty Boom too has claims again. Also with strong claims is (13) MUNHAK ZENYATTA. She has won at the distance already and has posted plenty of fast times.
|Selections||(5) Global Joy (6) Jangsan Gold (9) Race Royal (12) Mighty Boom|
|Next Best||13, 4|
|Fast Start||4, 5, 7, 13|
Busan Race 4: Class 4 (1200M) Handicap / KRW 35 Million
(8) TWO TWO WILD THING has never finished any worse than 4th in nine starts to date and on March 20th was an excellent class and distance winner beating four of these in the process. He does carry an additional 3.5kg today but should be equal to the task and is favoured to win again. Of those beaten by Two Two Wild Thing that day, (5) MR. FUSION, who was 3rd, look best placed to challenge again. He too is yet to finish any worse than 4th and he is versatile in his running style. He can place again. Another very consistent type is (2) ONNURI JILJU. He has the fastest time of any of these at the distance, recorded when an all the way winner back in November and he drops back in trip after a front-running 2nd over 1400M last start. He is down in the weights, drawn beautifully to lead and the others will have to come past him. (10) GOBLIN and (11) PERFECT JEWANG – the latter likely to be very happy to be down in trip – are others in the minor money hunt.
|Selections||(8) Two Two Wild Thing (2) Onnuri Jilju (5) Mr. Fusion (10) Goblin|
|Next Best||11, 3|
|Fast Start||1, 7, 8, 14|
Seoul Race 7: Class 5 (1400M) Handicap / KRW 28 Million
Fillies (and one mare) only here. (1) CUPID POINT come sin off a super win when she led all the way in class 6 company to score in style at this distance. With the inside gate today, she should get to the front with minimal hassle and even though she hasn’t raced since January, she should be very hard to beat. If there is anything capable of beating her, it’s (7) IRON MUSKET. Nothing has beaten her so far in two starts and she comes in off a visually fantastic nine-length win over 1200M at the end of February. She was eased down that day, her times have been good, and it would be no real surprise were she to make it three in a row. (8) K N MAGIC is yet to win in three outings but has shown ability in running some good times. She comes down in weight here and is worth consideration for the minors. (2) SET THE PACE and (3) COMPLETE STAR are among a number of others capable of going close.
|Selections||(1) Cupid Point (7) Iron Musket (8) K N Magic (3) Complete Star|
|Next Best||2, 12|
|Fast Start||1, 2, 11, 12|
Busan Race 5: Class 4 (1400M) Handicap / KRW 35 Million
Tricky puzzle to solve here. (3) BUCATINI perhaps just about shades it based on his much-improved win at start number 2 at this class over 1200M on March 6th. From a similarly good draw as today, he was quickly in the lead and ran on strong. The additional furlong shouldn’t be a problem. The distance is definitely no problem for (7) B.K JOHN, who ran out a fine winner over it at class 5 level last month. While he is up in class today, he is down in the weights by a full 4kg and has every chance of winning again. Draw a line through the latest effort from (10) UNBONGSAN. He has won at this distance in the past and is capable of running solid times. (11) ROYAL TICKET and (12) CHEAT KEY are others firmly in the frame.
|Selections||(3) Bucatini (7) B.K John (12) Cheat Key (11) Royal Ticket|
|Next Best||10, 13|
|Fast Start||3, 5, 10, 12|
Seoul Race 8: Class 4 (1800M) Allowance / KRW 35 Million
Since finishing 3rd on debut in the Rookie Stakes, (14) CHIEF INDY has racked up three good wins as well as a solid 4th behind Heungbaragi in the track’s top juvenile race last November. He was a last start class and distance winner and in a normal year would be preparing for the Korean Derby. As it is, he is up in weight and drawn wide today, but is still very much the one to beat. (8) QUIET ADELE ran 4th to Chief Indy last start. She’s an unspectacular but reliable type who should be pushing for the minors again. (1) WONDERFUL PLEASURE is worth some though with sound recent form, including a 2nd place to Chief Indy at 1400M. She has won to 1700M and likes to be close to the pace. The inside barrier should work in her favour. (4) JEJUI YOJEONG has been consistent at the shorter distances but always gives the indication that further may suit. She will run on strong. (10) GEUMA SUPREME is worth another chance here after underwhelming first-up behind Chief Indy.
|Selections||(14) Chief Indy (1) Wonderful Pleasure (8) Quiet Adele (4) Jejui Yojeong|
|Next Best||10, 13|
|Fast Start||1, 2, 7, 14|
Busan Race 6: Class 2 (1800M) Handicap / KRW 50 Million
A really good race. (13) GOLDEN WINNER is the narrow top pick on the strength of his latest two starts where he has secured all the way wins over his distance and 1400M. He is up in class but down in the weights and while he has to deal with an extremely unpleasant draw although he could be able to follow (12) DAEMANGUI GIL on his inside – who will also want to get across to the speed. Golden Winner could well have the quality required to see him through. (11) THE SABER came from off the pace to down Doctor Carson last start at 1400M. He is yet to finish any worse than 3rd in eight attempts and a good apprentice keeps his weight down for his first attempt around two turns. He surely goes close. (14) WORLD TOP and (5) BARBARIAN both step up in class having finished 1st and 2nd respectively over a mile on March 20th at class 3 level. Both can be competitive. (6) CURLIN TIME beat three of these on his way to 2nd at class and distance on March 27th. He comes from off the pace and can be dangerous. A lot was asked of (9) CRAZY CONTI first up at this trip at the end of February and he can be expected to go better today.
|Selections||(13) Golden Winner (11) The Saber (6) Curlin Time (5) Barbarian|
|Next Best||9, 14|
|Fast Start||1, 2, 12, 13|
Seoul Race 9: Class 3 (1800M) Handicap / KRW 42 Million
(8) RAON TOUGH MAN pulled off a terrific win last start at class and distance on March 7th with four of these back down the track. He was 2nd in last year’s Korean Derby and now he’s back in form, even though he carries more weight, expect him to go on and win again here. (7) ICE PUNCH is worth plenty of thought after a good 3rd at this distance in a nice time. That followed earlier impressive wins at 1300M and 1400M. Expect him to be on pace from the start. (2) JANGSAN BADA’s latest performance was uncharacteristic when always struggling from a wide draw behind Raon Tough Man. It’s a better barrier today and significant improvement is possible. (3) GLOBAL CHEONHA is very consistent at the distance and while up in class, is down in weights and comes into a good barrier. (13) ROYAL SMARTY the best of the rest.
|Selections||(8) Raon Tough Man (7) Ice Punch (3) Global Cheonha (2) Jangsan Bada|
|Next Best||13, 9|
|Fast Start||3, 4, 7, 11|
Seoul Race 10: Class 1 (1400M) Handicap / KRW 60 Million
(3) CHEONGDAM DOKKI steps back to 1400M for the first time in a very long time. However, he is always happiest leading and has a ton of early speed. He has drawn beautifully and if he gets out in front, even giving away so much weight, the champion may be home before his rivals have a chance to catch him. There are some tremendous rivals too. (2) MORFHIS is a winner of four class 1 race over 1400M all in great times. Because of Cheongdam Dokki’s presence, he comes down in the weights to an absolutely beautiful mark of 53kg. The only concern is that because of his running style, he may require a bit of luck to get a clear run late on. If he gets it, he can win. If he doesn’t, it may be too late. (14) DO KKI BLADE comes into the race after 2nd place to Eoma Eoma back in February. The barrier is against him somewhat, but this is a horse who ran 2nd to Morfhis in the SBS Sports Sprint over 1200M last summer and he has loads of ability. (6) DIA ROAD is one of Korea’s best mares with a great strike rate that has been achieved mostly while harvesting big filly & mare prizes. She is more than capable of handling herself in mixed company too and has some super times in her record. She is resuming today for the first time since last August and while she won a trial in March in a canter, today may not be her peak.
|Selections||(3) Cheongdam Dokki (2) Morfhis (14) Do Kki Blade (6) Dia Road|
|Next Best||8, 4|
|Fast Start||3, 4, 10, 14|