Day: May 13, 2023

SBS Sports Sprint, Ttukseom Cup & Exchange Race Sunday – Seoul & Busan Race-By-Race Preview (May 14)

It’s Ttukseom Cup and SBS Sports Sprint day at Seoul on Sunday. See here for full preview of the two races. There are also six reciprocal Trophy Exchange races. Busan hosts Trophies for OSAF (South America), the Jockey Club of Turkey and the Selangor Turf Club. At Seoul there are Trophies in honour of the Royal Western India Turf Club, the China Horse Industry Association and Tokyo City Keiba. There are 11 races at Seoul from 10:35 to 18:00 and 6 at Busan from 11:50 to 16:35. Here are the Previews:

Raon First and Choi Bum-hyun will aim to defend the Ttukseom Cup on Sunday (Pic: KRA)

Seoul Race 1: Class 6 (1300M) Special Weight A / KRW 25 Million

Competitive maiden to open with. (10) DAEHEUNG CLASS enters in off his two best performances so far, a 2nd and a 3rd both over this distance when settling back and running on. His style is such that he doesn’t need to lead so the wide draw isn’t a problem and he should be finishing off well. (2) ARGO MUJEOK also comes in following his best performance to date, when 2nd at 1200M on April 16th when handy throughout. He steps up to this distance for the first time and from a good draw, it may well suit. (1) MIGHTY ANN returned from almost six months out to run 3rd over 1200M on April 8th. She should strip fitter for that run and can match or better it here. (9) WONPYEONG SKY and (11) LAST PITCH are among plenty of others with minor money hopes.

Selections(10) Daeheung Class (2) Argo Mujeok (1) Mighty Ann (9) Wonpyeong Sky
Next Best11, 4
Fast Start1, 2, 8, 11

Seoul Race 2: Class 6 (1200M) Special Weight A / KRW 40 Million

Three-year-old maidens and not an especially strong race. Despite the wide draw, we’ll side with (11) HAENGUN BARAM, who after a return to trial after an inauspicious February debut, was much better on April 8h when running 2nd at this distance and with a couple of today’s rivals behind her. She settled midfield and finished well and while the time wasn’t quick, it was faster than any of the others here have managed. (3) NAOL DAEWANG likewise wasn’t exactly a speedster when 3rd on debut over this distance on April 9th. He was slowly away but finished well and with some natural improvement, can be in this. (10) DAMJAENGI ARGO was 4th behind Haeungun Baram on April 8th, her second 4th place in a row. She draws wide but with a bit of luck can get a forward or handy position which will put her in the hunt. (5) MILLION PARTY and (2) HEART K are others to consider.

Selections(11) Haengun Baram (3) Naol Daewang (10) Damjaengi Argo (5) Million Party
Next Best2, 6
Fast Start1, 5, 7, 10

Seoul Race 3: Class 5 (1200M) Handicap / KRW 40 Million

Another maiden and (7) LEGEND SOCKS will be favourite. Since returning from eleven months off, he has two 3rd places and a 2nd from three starts back, all at this class and distance and each time racing handy. He’ll be close to the speed again and this time should be going one better. (5) GRAND POWER remains a maiden after fifteen attempts but has four runner-up finishes, including at this class over 1400M two starts back. The drop back in trip may suit here and he should be on pace and in this a long way. (8) MAGLE DAY got his maiden win three starts back at 1300M and has since finished 5th in two tries at this class. He too comes back slightly in trip and should be a factor. (11) FINAL JILJU comes up in class after a maiden win at this distance on April 15th. The time was good, and he can measure up in this company. (3) LEGEND K was never a factor in his latest but has won at the distance and can be given another chance.

Selections(7) Legend Socks (5) Grand Power (8) Magle Day (11) Final Jilju
Next Best3, 1
Fast Start1, 5, 7, 10

Busan Race 1: Class 6 (1300M) Special Weight A / KRW 25 Million

(7) GIJEOGUI GEUMBIT shapes as a warm favourite here. That’s based on her latest outing which was also her best when 3rd over 1200M on April 23rd. She has raced at this distance before too, posting a time quicker than any of the others have achieved and she won’t need to improve very much to win here. (1) DIA SPIRIT has left himself far too much to do in his races so far but rattled home well for 3rd over 1200M on April 7th. He gets his best draw since his debut; an apprentice keeps the weight down and the extra half furlong can work in his favour. (10) ECTON POWER is yet to finish in the top two in twenty-eight starts. He has though picked up plenty of minor checks including a 4th place last time out when finishing well at 1200M. He should be matching or bettering that here. (6) KELLY QUEEN and (3) RUNNING FASHION others to keep safe.

Selections(7) Gijeogui Geumbit (1) Dia Spirit (10) Ecton Power (6) Kelly Queen
Next Best3, 4
Fast Start4, 6, 7, 9

Seoul Race 4: Class Open (1200M) Special Weight A / Royal Western India Turf Club Trophy / KRW 150 Million

The first of a lot of trophy races today, this one equivalent to class 3. It’s a tricky puzzle. (7) WOLF PLAY has won two of his latest three with defeat sandwiched between those wins being in the Sports Seoul Classic Trial. His latest was at this distance at class 4 level in a quick time on April 15th and while this is undoubtedly harder, he comes down in the weights and can measure up. (5) YELLOW CAT has eight top-three finishes from ten starts. Most recently she was 2nd over 1400M at class 3 level coming from off the pace but she has won at this distance and from a good draw should be very dangerous. (1) TAP QUALITY carries his fair share of weight here but he is a front runner who is coming back in trip and into a very good gate.  Ultra-consistent, he won’t be far away. (8) FARCIARZ and (3) SAENAE QUEEN among plenty of others who enter in good form and who can have a say.

Selections(7) Wolf Play (5) Yellow Cat (1) Tap Quality (8) Farciarz
Next Best3, 12
Fast Start1, 3, 6, 7

Busan Race 2: Class 5 (1600M) Special Weight B / KRW 40 Million

(8) TOP FRIEND beat four of today’s rivals on his way to 2nd place at class and distance on April 7th when overcoming the widest gate to settle back in the field and then finish strongly. He carries the same weight today but comes into a slightly better barrier, and after three runner-up finishes, he can make the breakthrough at start number eight. (9) HWANGWOO MONEY was 3rd in that race, a length-and-a-half behind Top Friend having led for much of the way. His draw isn’t as good today, but he still looks to be the main danger. (4) ETTEUMI was 5th that day having been slowly away from a wide draw and finding it hard to get a good position. His draw is better today, and he should get closer. (10) WONDERFUL BOBCAT and (2) NOBLE COWBOY are other possibles.

Selections(8) Top Friend (9) Hwangwoo Money (4) Etteumi (10) Wonderful Bobcat
Next Best2, 1
Fast Start1, 3, 5, 7

Seoul Race 5: Class Open (1600M) Special Weight A / China Horse Industry Association Trophy / KRW 150 Million

This Trophy race is at class 2 level and has attracted the maximum safe field size of ten for the mile start. (6) SPOT FLATTER ran out a very good winner over this distance at class 2 on March 19th with a couple of today’s rivals behind him. That was his first start back following an eight-month absence and he was at a big price. He will be much shorter today but can win again. (2) BEST LUCKY was 3rd in that race having settled midfield and run on. Like Spot Flatter, the set weight scale does him no favours, but he won under 56kg at class 3 level over this distance two starts back and from a nice draw can go close. (4) RAON BEAT came home 4th in that March 19th race having been slow away and settling right back. He has the fastest time in the field for the distance. The ultra consistent (9) YONGAM BOSS, as well as (7) ACE HAMSEONG are among those who didn’t go in the March 19th race who can enter the calculations.



There’s a double helping of Group race action at Seoul Racecourse this Sunday as both the Sprint Series and Queens’ Tour hold their second legs.

Raon The Fighter won the Busan Ilbo Sprint (Pic: KRA)

Eight of the eleven-strong field for the SBS Sports Sprint Trophy (1200M KOR-G3) ran in the first leg of the Sprint Series, the Busan Ilbo Sprint on April 2nd, among them all top-six of that day’s finishers. That of course includes RAON THE FIGHTER, last year’s Korea Cup and Grand Prix Stakes runner-up, who has dropped back to the sprinting ranks this term and crushed the field in Busan last month, winning by five-lengths. The five-year-old Bayern entire will be a short-priced favourite to prevail again.

Korea Sprint winner EOMA EOMA was the disappointment in Busan. Sent off at only marginally longer odds than Raon The Fighter, he was handy in the early stages but didn’t respond in the home straight and finished in 6th place, nine-lengths behind the winner. With Moon Se-young suspended, Yoo Seung-wan climbed aboard and the winner of this race two years ago will once more be sent off as second favourite.

Eoma Eoma is not the only previous winner in the field. In fact, MORFHIS has won this race twice, in 2020 and in 2022 both times, as is his style, coming from off the pace to rattle home strongly. Johan Victoire, who rode him to both those victories is aboard again and while he hasn’t raced since running 3rd behind Eoma Eoma and Jangsan Laser in February, Morfhis can never be ruled out in the SBS.

Eoma Eoma (Pic: KRA)

BEOLMAUI STAR was 2nd in the Busan Ilbo, leading for most of the way before being powerless to repel Raon The Fighter in the final furlong and a half. He will be supported on a place line again while SSONSAL and YES PERFECT, 3rd and 4th last month are others from Busan who have travelled to the capital with solid placing chances.

Just over an hour earlier, fourteen of the top fillies and mares in the country will go in the second leg of the Spring and Summer portion of the Queens’ Tour, the Ttukseom Cup (1400M KOR-G2). The first leg, the Donga Ilbo Trophy over 1800M on April 9th was won by EODIGANA, giving jockey Lee Dong-ha his first big race win. Unfortunately for the young rider, a broken collarbone suffered the following week means he doesn’t get the opportunity to keep the ride and Antonio Da Silva climbs aboard for the first time.

Raon The Spurt and Choi Bum-hyun have time to celebrate (Pic: KRA)

Eodigana warrants respect but she won’t be the favourite. That status will probably belong to RAON THE SPURT. She skipped the Donga Ilbo in order to take her chance against Winner’s Man in the Herald Business (2000M KOR-G3) on April 16th, running a creditable 4th. She was a very quick winner at this distance in March and while the draw is a touch wide, she may take some beating here. Lim Gi-won, who also rides Raon The Fighter, has a big chance of big double.

The main danger to Raon The Spurt may be her own stablemate. (11) RAON FIRST began the year as the undisputed top filly or mare on the country having won the President’s Cup (2000M KOR-G1) against the boys last November and while ratings-wise that is still true, she showed that she isn’t invincible in the Filly and Mare only ranks when running 2nd to Eodigana in the Donga Ilbo Trophy. She won this race last year though and a repeat would be no surprise.

FLAT BABE ran disappointingly in the Donga Ilbo but was a strong winner at class 1 level over 1800M in February when she beat Winner’s Man in the latter’s tune-up for the Herald Business. While further distances may be her forte, she’ll be in with a chance here. Perhaps the most intriguing entrant is three-year-old CARPE BABEL. Thomas Gillespie’s Carpe Diem filly has raced just five times, winning her latest two and from a great draw, she also gets a weight allowance.

The Ttukseom Cup is race 8 on Sunday with a local post time of16:10. The SBS Sports Sprint is race 10 with a start time of 17:30.