Sunday Seoul & Busan: Raon The Fighter v Eoma Eoma Race-By-Race Preview (January 9)

It hasn’t taken long for the new season to throw up a heavyweight clash as the unbeaten Raon The Fighter once more takes on Eoma Eoma, who he beat to win the Owners’ Association Trophy a month ago in the concluding class 1 feature at Seoul. There are 11 races at Seoul from 10:45 to 18:00 and 6 at Busan from 12: 12:00 to 16:40. All betting locations are open, however, attendance must be pre-booked on the MyCard app and proof of evidence of up to date vaccination against Covid-19 is required.

Raon The Fighter

Seoul Race 1: Class 6 (1000M) Allowance / KRW 40 Million

Three-year-old maidens open proceedings and (10) WILD RUNNER is set to be favourite. She ran 2nd on debut behind a couple of decent ones in a fast time. The one concern is that it was back in October but regardless, any similar kind of performance should see her winning this. If she is a bit rusty, then another filly, (6) HIWPARAM, may be one to take advantage. She too ran a very solid 3rd on debut, in her case on November 20th when she was handy throughout, completing the course in a fair time on a slower running track than Wild Runner’s time. She draws well here and should go close. (4) GEOMOON came home 6th behind a few promising ones on debut and should have benefitted from the experience, while (9) ARCH CHARM similarly didn’t do too much wrong when 5th from a wide gate at her first attempt. Among the six first-timers, (1) CHANGER is perhaps the best at this stage.

Selections(10) Wild Runner (6) Hwiparam (4) Geomoon (9) Arch Charm
Next Best1, 12
Fast Start1, 2, 6, 10

Seoul Race 2: Class 2 (1200M) Allowance / KRW 40 Million

A pair of socks should be battling this one out. We’ll side with (2) WILD SOCKS, who ran 2nd at start number two at 1000M having led for almost the entire way around. He comes up slightly in trip but draws beautifully again and could go all the way. (7) TITAN SOCKS has the same owner although a different trainer and has followed a similar trajectory so far, improving to 3rd at his second outing on December 4th. He came from off the pace though, working home well and it may be that the additional furlong is in his favour here. (12) ORGALIM comes into the calculations having beaten several of these on his way to 2nd place at this distance on December 4th in a fair time. He sat handy that day so may need a bit of luck from the wide gate (9) GEOLJAK MAN was 3rd in that race and along with (3) MUNHAK FOREST looks to have another placing chance here.

Selections(2) Wild Socks (7) Titan Socks (12) Orgalim (9) Geoljak Man
Next Best3, 10
Fast Start2, 3, 10, 12

Seoul Race 3: Class 6 (1300M) Allowance / KRW 25 Million

It may be a bit risky to go all-in on anything drawn as wide as he has done but it’s not easy to see (14) TES GO DAEBO getting rolled here. He has raced just twice, registering a 4th and a 2nd, the latest at 1200M when handy and running on. The additional trip may help him find a decent position from the car park. (3) OKDONG GONGJU has five top-five finishes among ten outings so far and looks set to be one who could push the favourite here from a good draw. (10) SAENAE POWERFUL was a significantly improved 3rd at start number two on December 12th leading most of the way around and he too should be a contender here. The rest have been models of inconsistency but (7) TINA and (8) NAMSAN DREAM could potentially compete for places.

Selections(14) Tes Go Daebo (3) Okdong Gongju (10) Saenae Powerful (7) Tina
Next Best8, 4
Fast Start8, 10, 12, 14

Busan Race 1: Class 6 (1000M) Allowance / KRW 40 Million

Maidens, with four of the eleven racing for the first time. (9) B. K. HANA comes in with form reading the best following a 2nd and a 3rd from her latest two appearances. The 2nd was at today’s distance when she was handy throughout from a wide gate and with a time more than second faster than any of the others have managed, she is the one to beat. (7) JATNAMUGIL is the logical second pick. He was 6th to B. K. Hana two starts back but the improved to 3rd at his latest outing when stepped up to 1200. He’ll be on pace and in this a long way. (4) EUNSEONG YEONGUNG beat a couple of these when 5th on debut at the distance on November 26th. He draws much better today and should have come on. Among the first timers, (2) KENDRICK is stand out. The Take Charge Indy colt ran a strong trial in a fast time and from a great draw can go well. (1) EUTTEUMI perhaps has potential to improve.

Selections(9) B. K. Hana (7) Jatnamugil (4) Eunseong Yeongung (2) Kendrick
Next Best1, 8
Fast Start3, 7, 8, 9

Seoul Race 4: Class 6 (1300M) Allowance / KRW 25 Million

After trialing up alongside some established horses, (12) NAMSAM KKOT ran a solid 3rd on debut over 1200M, settling in midfield and running on strongly. She draws wide but her running style that day suggests it shouldn’t be too much of a problem and she could be challenging for the win here. (10) RAON THE WEEKEND had an ordinary day at the office in probably better company than this at his latest start on December 11th when he wasn’t able to get on pace from a very wide draw. The draw is only a little better today, but he should have an easier time getting to the front and the additional half-furlong can help.  Continuing the theme of wide draws, (13) DONGSEO YEOGEOL was a significantly improved 2nd when going back and coming from off the pace over 1200M on December 5th. She had raced prominently in previous starts, to no avail, so expect similar tactics here. (4) REAL CONCORD is a fancy who does draw well and should be in the hunt along with (9) ONE MORE RUSH.

Selections(12) Namsam Kkot (10) Raon The Weekend (13) Dongseo Yeogeol (4) Real Concord
Next Best9, 5
Fast Start4, 9, 10, 13

Busan Race 2: Class 6 (1200M) Allowance / KRW 25 Million

Fillies and mares only here. Based on her last start runner-up finish at this distance in a time quicker than anything else in this race has managed, (8) TAEPUNGI is the one to beat here. She sat midfield and ran on that day and under a light weight again, can go one better. (9) ALPHA V should have come on for her debut run when settling midfield before getting well back and then working home adequately. She had previously posted fast trial times so there is some ability there and a more mature performance can see her right in this. (2) HAMAN YEOHANGSAN returned from three months off to run a good 3rd over this distance on December 19th. She can strip fitter here and get close. (1) OMEGA GIRL and (6) WORLD FLOWER came home 2nd and 3rd respectively when they raced each other at 1400M on December 10th and both can have placing claims again.

Selections(8) Taepungi (9) Alpha V (2) Haman Yeohangsan (1) Omega Girl
Next Best6, 12
Fast Start2, 5, 8, 9

Seoul Race 5: Class 5 (1200M) Handicap / KRW 40 Million

Competitive race for fillies and mares. (10) LEGEND SOCKS ran out an emphatic winner on debut over 1000M sitting handy and then running away from them in the straight. She comes up in class and in distance here but has claims to maintain her 100% record. It won’t be easy. (2) LADY FIRST is the likely favourite. She won on debut at 1000M and has since put in two decent efforts at this class and distance with a close at hand 4th on her latest start. She gets the benefit of the draw and The Moon in the saddle, and she can win. (5) DANCING WITH YOU enters on a consistent run of form and while she may find one or two too quick again, is a solid placing hope. He up in class (12) EUNHYE CHUNGMAN as well as (8) BURUI YEOWANG are others who should be aiming for minor money at least.

Selections(10) Legend Socks (2) Lady First (5) Dancing With You (12) Eunhye Chungman
Next Best8, 7
Fast Start4, 8, 10, 13

Busan Race 3: Class 5 (1600M) Handicap / KRW 40 Million

(10) OLD CHEONHA comes in having run 3rd over 1800M on his first try at this class, following a good win at this distance at class 6 level in November. His running style suggests that today’s wide draw shouldn’t be too much of a problem and he has the potential to win again. (6) BEOMI NAERYEO ONDA was a strong winner at 1000M at class 6 level but didn’t have a great run in the Breeders’ Cup race in December when despite being drawn on the inside and getting a good start, he couldn’t keep pace. He’s back into shallower waters here, can get an easier lead at an easier tempo, and the mile may suit. (1) TOP ADELE will be a challenger for that early lead. He returned to action after six months out in December and while he quickly ran out of steam, should have come on for the run and go better today from a much better draw. (4) ACE FOUR TEN and (7) SOL INVICTUS, others with money hopes.

Selections(10) Old Cheonha (6) Beomi Naeryo Onda (1) Top Adele (4) Ace Four Ten
Next Best7, 11
Fast Start1, 4, 6, 8

Seoul Race 6: Class 5 (1400M) Handicap / KRW 40 Million

(10) BEOLMAL DAEJANG is yet to win in ten attempts but remarkably has never finished outside the top four. At his latest start on December 5th, the Colonel John colt led for much of the way around, getting swept up in the closing stages and finishing 4th. While he draws wider, an apprentice aboard contributes towards him carrying a full 4.5kg less this time and it could be the difference. That makes a big swing in the weights with (3) COWBOY TANGO, who ran 3rd in that December 5th race, coming from off the pace. He too enters in very consistent form and should be close again. (12) YES I CAN ran a good 4th on his first try at class and distance n November 27th. His running style should mean the draw isn’t too important and he is firmly in the frame. (2) BRAVO MAY and (7) K FRENZY among others with strong placing claims.

Selections(10) Beolmal Daejang (3) Cowboy Tango (12) Yes I Can (2) Bravo May
Next Best7, 1
Fast Start1, 6, 9, 10

Busan Race 4: Class 4 (1400M) Handicap / KRW 60 Million

(2) GOLDEN BYEORAK ran four times last spring and summer, finishing no worse than 4th and put in a couple of fast times at this distance. He hasn’t raced since August, but he looked well in a December trial and there’s no reason why he can’t score first-up here. (5) DOCTOR GIANTS finished behind Golden Byeorak back last August and while he has mixed his form since, he is rarely too far away. He can sit handy here and run on into contention. (9) SUNLIGHT BOY was a class and distance winner two starts back when leading all the way in a fast time. He then ran 4th over a mile on his return in early December. He carries 3kg more than when he won but should be in the finish again here. (10) MUJEOK BULPAE and (7) B.K. MARSHALL are others who enter the placing calculations.

Selections(2) Golden Byeorak (5) Doctor Giants (9) Sunlight Boy (10) Mujeok Bulpae
Next Best7, 1
Fast Start1, 2, 7, 9

Seoul Race 7: Class 5 (1700M) Allowance / KRW 60 Million

Tricky race. (5) AMAZING WHIZ comes in off a 3rd place at 1300M and then 2nd at this class and distance on December 4th when close to the pace throughout and ultimately only beaten by one of today’s rivals. She looks to be working back towards another win and it could be here. (10) GUITARIST ran a close 2nd under an ungainly ride last time out – had he crossed the line first the places would probably have been reversed in the stewards’ room. None of that was his fault and he should go close again. (1) VICTORICA comes up in trip following a good 2nd place over 1400M at this class. She draws nicely on the inside and can be in the finish again. (4) MEOTJIN GUY and (7) RUFFIAN PARK, the latter the one who beat Amazing Whiz back in December, are others to be considered.

Selections(5) Amazing Whiz (10) Guitarist (1) Victorica (4) Meotjin Guy
Next Best7, 9
Fast Start1, 6, 8, 11

Busan Race 5: Class 4 (1200M) Handicap / KRW 60 Million

Another wildly competitive race, this one restricted to fillies and mares only. (3) SKITTER is one of a number of these who raced each other at class and distance on December 3rd. She ran 4th that day and under a similarly light weight but from a better gate, this could be her day. (14) CROWN FUNKY comes back in trip following an excellent all the way win over 1400M on December 17th. The draw does her no favours here, but she has run good times at this distance before and can go close. By contrast, (1) MINYEOBONG is the big winner from the draw and comes in having beaten a couple of these on her way to 5th at class and distance a month ago and should be in the mix here. (12) WORLD SOCKS has had a tough time on his latest two starts but is capable of running fast times and comes down significantly in the weights with an apprentice on board. (9) ACHIM BIT, who beat Skitter and the rest when 2nd in December, is another in the hunt.

Selections(3) Skitter (14) Crown Funky (1) Minyeobong (12) World Socks
Next Best9, 13
Fast Start4, 5, 11, 12

Seoul Race 8: Class 4 (1700M) Allowance / KRW 60 Million

(11) A. P. PATEK comes in off a last start 2nd place at class and distance when running on strong and just missing out. The draw should be irrelevant to hi and while he is under a high impost, he has every chance of running on to score here. He is a horse who knows how to get beat though, so you have to catch him when he is right and there could be some decent odds available. (7) LAST BOSS enters having run in the Minister’s Cup, the final leg of the Triple Crown on December 12th where he gave a decent account of himself in very tough company. This is obviously much easier, and he may well start as favourite. (6) EOSEOWA comes up in class and in distance following back-to-back runner-up finishes over 1400M at class 5 level. He will be expected to lead here and can measure up in this company. (1) UNOECHANGCHEON and (9) SIMPLE STYLE others who can place.

Selections(11) A.P. Patek (7) Last Boss (6) Eoseowa (1) Unoechangcheon
Next Best9, 4
Fast Start4, 6, 7, 8

Busan Race 6: Class 2 (1800M) Allowance / KRW 90 Million

(7) DOMINATION saw his winning streak come to an end at six at his last start when well back in distance to 1200M and ridden hard to be on the pace before battling on gamely for a close 4th. We’ll go on his previous win over 1800M in fine style up when on the pace. That was at class 3 level, but this is not beyond him. (6) B.K JOHN is a winner at class and distance two starts back and then at his latest outing on December 3rd when up in weight, he was ridden to a handy position then battled on strongly for 4th. Keep him safe here. (3) JANGSAN DOKKI is never far away and is versatile as he can race forward or in midfield and has the benefit of a close barrier today which can put him right in the race. (5) WORLD TODAY was 5th behind B.K John last time. He has been there or thereabouts in all his recent starts and should be competitive again. (14) GEUMA MYSTIC beat both B.K John and World Today at his latest start and while the draw is not in his favour here, he warrants respect.

Selections(7) Domination (6) B.K John (3) Jangsan Dokki (5) World Today
Next Best14, 12
Fast Start3, 5, 10, 12

Seoul Race 9: Class 3 (1800M) Allowance / KRW 75 Million

(9) MIGHTY POP enters in great form with a win and two runner-up finishes from his latest three with the latest being a 2nd place at this class and distance on December 5th when he beat plenty of today’s rivals in the process. He comes up a couple of kilograms as a result but could well beat them again today. (7) MANSEOK JIGI has put in two solid efforts at this distance since being promoted to this class. The Paynter entire can sit handy here and run on to challenge. (3) HIDDEN SOCKS ran 3rd to Mighty Pop’s 2nd in that December 5th race and from a much better draw and with qual weights, will be expected to at least get close again. (2) CHUNSAN and the up in class (1) DUSON JANGGUN are others in at least the placing frame.

Selections(9) Mighty Pop (7) Manseok Jigi (3) Hidden Socks (2) Chunsan
Next Best1, 13
Fast Start1, 4, 10, 11

Seoul Race 10: Class 4 (1200M) Handicap / KRW 60 Million

(2) THUNDER TIME will be the hot favourite here coming in following a great 2nd place at class and distance on December 5th when settling in midfield and running on well. He comes up in the weights but draws very nicely and should have too much. (7) MOONHAK CAIRO is one of a pair of debut-makers in the field and we’ll take a chance on him to go close first-up. He went through three trials at different points of last year, posting consistently fast times, most recently in December and he could finally be ready to hit the ground running here. (3) MJ POINT is yet to finish any better than 3rd but comes back in trip here and can be on pace from a nice gate. The other newcomer (6) JEDI FORCE, as well as (9) NAMCHON DAY are others in the frame in what is not very deep field.

Selections(2) Thunder Time (7) Moonhak Cairo (3) MJ Point (6) Jedi Force
Next Best9, 11
Fast Start2, 3, 9, 13

Seoul Race 11: Class 1 (1400M) Handicap / KRW 110 Million

(12) RAON THE FIGHTER dethroned (14) EOMA EOMA from his brief reign atop the sprinting ranks with a devastating gate-to-wire showing in the Seoul Owners Association Trophy on December 8th over 1200M at level weights to take his record to eight wins from eight starts. Under handicap conditions he meets Eoma Eoma with a 7kg advantage, the new hottest property in Korean racing will be expected to prevail again today. Eoma Eoma has the disadvantage of a terrible draw and all that weight to carry but he will surely give a good account of himself again and is the most likely to take advantage should the favourite make a mistake. (11) MORFHIS must carry even more weight, but his class can see him into a place. (2) LEGEND DAY and (5) SPRING BACK likely to be among those competing for the minors.

Selections(12) Raon The Fighter (14) Eoma Eoma (11) Morfhis (2) Legend Day
Next Best5, 3
Fast Start2, 12, 13, 14