Korea’s top mare meets the winner of the Filly Triple Crown as Raon First and Golden Power clash for the first time in the KNN Cup (1600M KOR-G3) at Busan on Sunday afternoon. It’s the final race on a 7-race card at Busan which runs from 11:35 to 17:05. At Seoul there are 10 races from 10:45 to 18:00. Here are the previews:
Seoul Race 1: Class 6 (1000M) Allowance / KRW 60 Million
Juvenile maidens in the opener with seven of the eight making their racecourse debuts. It’s the sole one with experience though who will be the hot favourite. That’s (8) NAOL SNIPER who, following an encouraging trial, was sent off as favourite on debut over this distance on June 18th. Though on pace he had to settle for 4th, but it was a good time, and he won’t need to improve much on that to win this. (4) P N S LOOK was the fastest among the newcomers in trials. She ran a close 2nd in the heat, running on pace throughout and if she brings that form to the races, she can go well first-up. (2) DRAGON STAR beat a couple of today’s rivals on his way to winning a June 24th trial. He draws nicely here and can beat them again. (3) HAENGBOKAN MUNMAK also win a trial, overcoming a wide gate to do so and along with (7) HIGH GRAND is another to consider.
|Selections||(8) Naol Sniper (4) P N S Look (2) Dragon Star (3) Haengbokan Munmak|
|Next Best||7, 1|
|Fast Start||1, 4, 6, 8|
Seoul Race 2: Class 6 (1200M) Allowance / KRW 40 Million
(2) GRAY THOR should have too much here. After two fair showings in his first two races, he was a significantly improved runner-u p at the third time of asking over this distance on June 18th when he led almost the entire way around. He carries the same weight; he draws well, and he can go all the way this time. (3) YAMUJIN WANGCHO also comes in following a 2nd place finish at his latest start on June 26th over 1300M. He too was on pace throughout the race and today he draws much better. He can go close again. (5) QUEEN OF RACING is yet to finish in the top-two but nevertheless has six top-five finishes. With an apprentice engaged, she comes down 3kg in the weights today and should be in the finish. (6) GEONGONILCHEOK and (8) CHEONMA CHAT others in the placing hunt.
|Selections||(2) Gray Thor (3) Yamujin Wangcho (5) Queen Of Racing (6) Geongonilcheok|
|Next Best||8, 4|
|Fast Start||2, 5, 6, 7|
Busan Race 1: Class 6 (1000M) Allowance / KRW 60 Million
Juvenile maidens get things underway on the south coast and six of the seven are racing for the first time. As so often in these kinds of races, we are going to value the experience here of (5) FANTASTIC KINGDOM. Having won a May trial, he ran a good 3rd on debut on June 24th in a good time over this distance, settling in midfield and running on well. He should have come on for that run and can win here. (4) JEOLGEOUNYEOJEONG is the clear pick of the first-time starters. She ran on very well from a handy position to comfortably win her trial in the kind of time that would win plenty of races at this class and distance. If she brings that form to the races, she has every chance. (7) HWANGU FIGHTER ran 2nd in his trial on a wet track while (2) TAP DREAM and (3) ADELE HORANGI, the latter a trial winner, are other first-timers who could make an impression.
|Selections||(5) Fantastic Kingdom (4) Jeolgeounyeojeong (7) Hwangu Fighter (2) Tap Dream|
|Next Best||3, 6|
|Fast Start||2, 3, 4, 5|
Seoul Race 3: Class 6 (1200M) Allowance / KRW 40 Million
(7) DAPHNE should be winning this. On her return from five months out in May she parted company with her jockey but came back two weeks later on June 11th to run a solid 4th in a good time over this distance. That time was faster than anything else in this race has achieved and with Moon Se-young climbing aboard as well as the limited opposition, it would appear today is the day. (8) SWEET KAKAO needs a line drawn through her latest effort on May 29th but her form leading up to that was adequate enough to suggest she can go well here. She is up in the weights without the benefit of an apprentice claim but should be ridden forward here. (1) CUPID KOREA led over 1300M on his first start in seven months on June 11th. He ultimately weakened but should have benefited for the run and can get closer today. (5) DIVINE FUTURES and (3) GENTLE RULES other placing contenders.
|Selections||(7) Daphne (8) Sweet Kakao (1) Cupid Korea (5) Divine Futures|
|Next Best||3, 2|
|Fast Start||1, 5, 7, 8|
Busan Race 2: Class 6 (1200M) Allowance / KRW 25 Million
Another race with a hot favourite here. (8) CAPTAIN GOLD won a May trial in fine fashion leading him to be sent off as market-leader on debut on June 3rd. He ran well and on pace but ultimately had to settle for 2nd place over this distance. He should have come on for that run and it would be a surprise were he to be beaten again. (6) ALPHA V is the logical second pick. She returned from five months out to run a good 3rd over 1200M on May 22nd when settling midfield and running on well. She’ll do the same here and will challenge at the business end of the race. (9) GEUMA UNO raced once without distinction last December but looked well when winning a June trial, leading all the way. The trainer/jockey combination will ensure he has backers. There are four first-time starters and the wonderfully named (4) I LOVE HANSEN looked well in trials and along with (2) MIGHTY STORM – who does have experience – looks a potential place chance.
|Selections||(8) Captain Gold (6) Alpha V (9) Geuma Uno (4) I Love Hansen|
|Next Best||2, 11|
|Fast Start||5, 8, 9, 10|
Seoul Race 4: Class 6 (1400M) Allowance / KRW 25 Million
Tricky maiden this. Her last start run over 1200M was slow, but she did manage to finish 2nd and that’s enough to take a chance on (2) THAT’S MY GIRL. She comes back up to a trip at which she has a run a time as quick as any here (albeit not that quick and on a wet track) and from a good draw, she can win. (9) NEW SMART has a time equal to that achieved by That’s My Girl for the distance. She too comes back up in trip after a decent showing around 1200M last time out, in her case on when 3rd on June 19th. She draws wide but should have enough speed to get a good position and she has every chance. (5) P N S THE KING showed un uptick in form when 2nd over 1300M on July 2nd. Prior to that he had a tendency to get a bit too far back in his races so that was encouraging and Song Jae-chul getting the ride will his chances no harm. (7) BITNANEUN JILJU and (8) STAR PRINCESS among others to consider.
|Selections||(2) That’s My Girl (9) New Smart (5) P N S The King (7) Bitnaneun Jilju|
|Next Best||8, 6|
|Fast Start||1, 2, 6, 9|
Busan Race 3: Class 5 (1300M) Handicap / KRW 40 Million
Several chances here. (5) HWARANG SKY is one of three up in class following a maiden win at their respective latest starts. In her case, it came over this distance on June 19th when she beat Unju Star, who went on to record a win of his own on Friday. It was a fair time, and he can measure up in this company. (4) ANY LINE made all for his maiden win at start number fifteen on June 17th, overcoming gate ten in the process. He has run well at this distance and 1400M in the past and from a good draw can get on the speed and be in this a long way. (3) HOLLYWOOD PARTY similarly led from gate-to-wire to score on June 12th, also at 1200M. She has made good progress over her three outings to date and looks nicely in here. As for those with prior experience at class 5, (1) DOCTOR PRO came from well off the pace to run 3rd at class and distance on June 26th. He draws much better today and should be in this. (2) D’LOVELY QUEEN could compete for the minors.
|Selections||(5) Hwarang Sky (4) Any Line (3) Hollywood Party (1) Doctor Pro|
|Next Best||2, 7|
|Fast Start||2, 3, 4, 7|
Seoul Race 5: Class 5 (1200M) Handicap / KRW 40 Million
(9) FURIOSA ran out a comfortable winner on debut over 1000M on June 18th having previously won a trial in a similar manner. She comes up in class and in trip here, but the manner of that victory suggests more to come, and she can win again. The main danger looks set to be (11) LAST PUNCH. She has plenty of experience at this level with two placings including her last start 3rd over 1300M. She went back that day and ran on, and similar tactics might be expected here form the wide gate. (6) MYEONGJIN CANDY is up in class after an all the way win over 1200M on June 19th. The same apprentice jockey keeps her weight nice and low, and she can be a danger here again. Disregard the last start from (4) DAEMUL as it was in the Korean Derby. He returns to shallower waters today and can be competitive. (5) CLOUTER among numerous others with genuine placing hopes.(more…)