Day: December 3, 2022

Breeders’ Cup Sunday Busan & Seoul: Race-By-Race Preview (December 4)

The title of Champion Juvenile will be decided on Sunday as a full field of sixteen two-year-olds go to post for the Breeders Cup (1200M KOR-G2) at Busan. The big race is race 6 on a 6-race card at Busan from 12:15 to 16:40. See here for a full preview of the big race. There is also an 11-race meeting at Seoul from 10:45 to 18:00. Morfhis goes in the feature although the grand galloper faces a weighty task in a competitive class 1 finale. Here are the previews:

SBS Sprint winner Morfhis is in action at Seoul (Pic: KRA)

Seoul Race 1: Class 6 (1000M) Allowance / KRW 60 Million

Juvenile maidens open proceedings with five of the twelve racing for the first time. We’ll side with experience though and (8) SAENAE KHAN, who ran an on-pace 2nd on debut over this distance on October 15th stopping the clock in a fast time. He should have come on for that run and can go one better here. Of the debut-makers, (1) CANDY GLOW looks to be the pick. She ran 3rd in her trial in a fair time all the way back in August. She draws very well here and Moon Se-young – who is in a bit of rut by his standards – being aboard is sure to guarantee her plenty of attention. (4) GEUMSEONG SIDAE has finished 4th in both his starts so far, both at 1000M and both in good times. A repeat will see him in the finish again today. (7) FINAL CHUKJE and (11) RAON AIR FORCE are other potential improvers.

Selections(8) Saenae Khan (1) Candy Glow (4) Geumseong Sidae (7) Final Chukje
Next Best11, 2
Fast Start4, 6, 8, 11

Seoul Race 2: Class 6 (1000M) Allowance / KRW 60 Million

More juvenile maidens, this time with seven of the twelve racing for the first time. (3) NAEGILUI QUEEN ran 4th on debut over this distance in a fast time on October 30th, racing on pace throughout. She draws very nicely to lead again and can go all the way. (9) TIZ INDY was 2nd on debut on October 23rd in the same time as Naegilui Queen achieved. She has a slightly harder ask here from the wide draw, but she looks set to be the main danger. Of the debutants, (5) DREAM PLAY looks the pick. He was on pace in his trial, crossing the line a very close 2nd in a fair time. If he brings that form to the races, he can be competitive. (1) GOLD MIGHTY draws a much better gate than he did when 6th on debut and improvement can be expected. (8) SEONGEUN CROWN another who could make progress.

Selections(3) Naegilui Queen (9) Tiz Indy (5) Dream Play (1) Gold Mighty
Next Best8, 11
Fast Start3, 5, 6, 9

Seoul Race 3: Class 6 (1200M) Allowance / KRW 60 Million

Another set of juvenile maidens but with only one first-timer starter. (7) HAYAN WANGJA was a well beaten runner-up behind Farciarz at start number two on November 5th when breaking well before being shuffled back and then running on strongly. The same apprentice jockey keeps his weight nice and low here and he can go one better, facing as he does nothing like that day’s winner this time. (1) NAOL TANK was a solid 4th on debut at 1000M on November 6th, settling back and finishing off well at odds in excess of 130/1. He comes into a better gate today and can be a danger. The solitary debut-maker has Moon up so will have backers. (4) DANGCHAN DAEBO trialled up fairly in November having been very slowly away but finishing off well and the 1200M may suit first-up. (11) MAGUMA was an improved 5th at start number two and along with (10) JARITHAN JAYU, is one who could potentially improve.

Selections(7) Hayan Wangja (1) Naol Tank (4) Dangchan Daebo (11) Maguma
Next Best10, 2
Fast Start2, 6, 7, 9

Busan Race 1: Class 6 (1200M) Allowance / KRW 60 Million

Three standouts here. (1) NICHOLAS G. ran a good 2nd on debut before being sent off as favourite for his second start over this distance on October 28th. He was on pace that day, ultimately coming home in 3rd place and third-up today and from a good gate, he can be ready to win. (6) YEONGGWANGUI ACE won a trial before beating a couple of these on his way to 2nd place in debut in a fast time over 1000M on October 28th with the highly thought-of Seobu Bigstep the winner. He should have derived benefit from that run and with some natural improvement, can be a danger here. (8) RAON THE HARLEY debuted at this distance on November 5th, stalking the leader and running on for 2nd in a good time. He too should have come on for the run and can be a factor. (10) SKY PUNCH and debut-maker (5) NAMYANG BOLT are others to keep safe.

Selections(1) Nicholas G. (6) Yeonggwangui Ace (8) Raon The Harley (10) Sky Punch
Next Best5, 11
Fast Start1, 4, 6, 9

Seoul Race 4: Class 6 (1200M) Allowance / KRW 40 Million

It’s hard to look too far past (1) ARGO TAP. He has been consistent across four starts so far, with his best being a 3rd place over 1000M at start number two back in July. He has had two months off since his latest on-pace showing over this distance, he draws well today and Moon Se-young rides. (9) TANGJA has the fastest time for the distance among these. Despite the wide draw, he can get on pace and should be in this a long way. (2) GOLDEN LUCKY has shown improvement across three starts so far and comes in off a 3rd place finish over this distance on November 5th when settling midfield. She is nicely drawn here and shapes as a chance. (7) TWO ACE scored his best finish to date when 2nd over this distance on November 6th. He comes up a full 4kg in the weights without an apprentice claim, but a repeat isn’t impossible. (5) GRACE LEE another in the placing frame.

Selections(1) Argo Tap (9) Tangja (2) Golden Lucky (7) Two Ace
Next Best5, 10
Fast Start1, 3, 4, 9

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

It’s not often we do this, but we’ll take a chance on the solitary debut-maker here. (6) WONDERFUL CHARMER is out of a good race mare and trialled well at the end of October crossing the line an unhurried 2nd. This is not the toughest of races to debut in and a winning start is possible. (11) SPEED MAST has a best of 2nd from thirteen outings, recorded three starts back over 1300M. The draw does him no favours here as he goes best when on pace, but he shouldn’t be too far away. (2) NALA has also managed a runner-up finish, in her case two outings ago over 1000M. She draws nicely here, doesn’t carry much weight, and has claims. (3) AGAIN HELEN and (9) PLAY THE INDY other possible in a race without much depth.

Selections(6) Wonderful Charmer (11) Speed Mast (2) Nala (3) Again Helen
Next Best9, 10
Fast Start2, 9, 8, 11

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

Fillies and mares only here. (8) SHINE ON ME ran out a good winner on debut over 1000M on October 16th when handy to the speed throughout. She comes up in class and in distance here, but neither should be insurmountable, and she can maintain her 100% record. (1) INNER PEACE comes in having won at class and distance on October 30th when on pace. She comes up a full 4.5kg in the weights but that’s balanced somewhat by an excellent draw. She has four to-three finishes from six starts and should be there or thereabouts again. (7) DUSON CLASSIC worked hard to get to a forward position from a wide gate before weakening in the closing stages over 1300M on November 6th. The slight drop in trip and the better draw should be more in her favour here. (3) MYEONGJIN CANDY and (11) TROT QUEEN others with minor money hopes.

Selections(8) Shine On Me (1) Inner Peace (7) Duson Classic (3) Myeongjin Candy
Next Best11, 10
Fast Start1, 3, 7, 9

Busan Race 3: Class 5 (1400M) Handicap / KRW 40 Million

(8) I LOVE HANSEN was a good winner over 1200M at class 6 level in September before running on pace but weakening for 5th place on his first try at class and distance on October 7th. He has since been back to trial, which he won making all in a fast time, and he can be given another chance to come out on top today. That will mean overturning the form on (11) GREAT GO, who ran 3rd in that October 7th race. She has since run 4th over 1300M and while she draws wide, she carries a very light weight and can be a danger. (5) OMEGA GIRL remains winless after thirty-one attempts but has ten top-four finishes, including a last start 3rd at this class over 1300M. She can settle back and run on here. (6) CHOEGANG DUDEURIM and (10) THUNDER CROWN are among others firmly in the placing hunt.


Fantastic Kingdom Can Sweep Juvenile Slam on Sunday

Fantastic Kingdom can complete an unprecedented sweep of all the year’s top juvenile races when he bids to add the Breeders’ Cup (1200M KOR-G2) to his three already bagged trophies at Busan on Sunday afternoon. But with an embarrassment of riches among the juvenile ranks this year, any victory is going to be hard-earned among a full field of sixteen, who have already racked up twenty-six race victories between them.

Fantastic Kingdom and Jeulgeounyeojeong will clash again on Sunday (Pic: KRA)

First to deal with those who are not there. Betelgeuse has been sent a different route, tackling 1800M and winning up at class 4 level last weekend as he is targeted to emulate stablemate Winner Star’s successful Derby campaign. Nonghyup Chairman’s Trophy winner Saenae Town likewise swerves the race having only returned to training just over a week ago.

Of the sixteen who will line up on Sunday as Busan and Seoul’s best two-year-olds meet for the first time having been in separate races for the lead-up, eight are from the home track and eight have travelled down from Seoul. Very few could be said to be without a chance but the one to beat is FANTASTIC KINGDOM.

After running 3rd on debut, Fantastic Kingdom won second-up and then preceded to win the Busan Rookie Stakes, the Areumdaun Jilju Stakes and the Gimhae Mayor’s Trophy, all over 1200M. He steps up to the 1400M for the first time but is well drawn and will be hard to beat again.

Seoul’s Rookie Stakes was won by GIANT PUNCH, who ran on after racing handy to the lead. He hasn’t raced since his 3rd place in the Munhwa Ilbo Trophy on October 2nd when he was hampered slightly at the start before settling midfield and running on well. He will need some luck from the relatively wide barrier but looks suited to 1400M.

Filly JEULGEOUNYEOJEONG was a winner at this distance in a fast time in class 4 company at the end of September before running a huge race when a close 2nd to Fantastic Kingdom in the Gimhae Mayor’s Trophy. She’s never finished any worse than 2nd and is a big chance here.  

Then there is SUN DRAGON. A winner at class 5 over 1300M, he led almost the entire way around in the Nonghyup Chairman’s Trophy, only to be denied by Saenae Town in the shadow of the post. He gets a fantastic draw on the inside here and he shouldn’t be ruled out.

Plenty of others are in the money frame as well. LUCKY SUN is the only one in the race with an unbeaten record as he comes in two for two with the second of those having been over this distance. Another 1400M winner is NAOL SNIPER. Along with SPEED YOUNG, who was 2nd in the Areumdaun Jilju Stakes, he was the wide draw to contend with but can’t be ruled out.

The Breeders’ Cup is the concluding race on a six-race program at Busan on Sunday with a local post time of 16:40. There are also eleven races at Seoul on Sunday.

Selections: (5) Fantastic Kingdom (11) Giant Punch (6) Jeolgeounyeojeong (2) Lucky Sun