It’s Oaks weekend at Busan and while the big race is on Sunday, things get underway with a 10-race Friday card from 14:30 to 21:00. Here are the previews:
Race 1: Class 6 (1200M) Allowance / KRW 24 Million
(4) OCEAN PHOENIX ran a decent race on debut at this distance at the start of June and should come on here with solid claims to win. He’ll settle behind the early leaders and can finish well. (7) ROYAL CLUB started poorly and then suffered in kickback when relatively well-supported last time. He has shown ability though and if he can get away to a good start today, he can go very close. (1) BAEKDU JANGSU offered precisely nothing across his first two outings but was a much-improved 2nd when tried at this distance for the first time four weeks ago and he can build on that here. (3) GIJEOGUIMYEONGSEONG ran very promisingly on debut all the way back last September but only ran once more before being out for nine months. He trialled up well at the end of June and can be backed first-up. There are two debut-makers and of them, (9) GOLD TREE has a top trainer/jockey combination and looked competent in trials.
|Selections||(4) Ocean Phoenix (7) Royal Club (3) Gijeoguimyeongseong (9) Gold Tree|
|Next Best||1, 2|
|Fast Start||2, 3, 7|
Race 2: Class 6 (1000M) Allowance / KRW 60 Million
Two-year-old maidens here hence the enhanced prize-money. Just two of them have run before and (7) POWER WINDY is likely to be strong favourite. He ran a very solid 3rd on debut in a similar race three weeks ago and the experience should see him in good stead. He led in that race from the gate and can do so again – without being caught this time. (6) TROPHY COLLECTOR debuted in the same race on June 22nd and while he only beat three home, didn’t run badly after a slow start and he can improve here. Of the first-timers, (5) FRIDAY is from the track’s top stable and is out of a Korean Derby winner and will get some backing. Others impressed a little more in trials though, with (2) SINBIHAN YEOIN and (4) YEONGGWANGUI FIGHT looking most likely.
|Selections||(7) Power Windy (2) Sinbihan Yeoin (5) Friday (6) Trophy Collector|
|Next Best||4, 1, 3|
|Fast Start||1, 7|
Race 3: Class 6 (1300M) Allowance / KRW 24 Million
Since returning from five months off in early June, (3) INTERCEPTOR has run well twice, coming 3rd over this distance three weeks ago, beating a couple of these in the process. He’s one of a number with a chance in this competitive contest. (4) THE FACT and (6) HORTENSE too come in off the back of 3rd place finishes on what was their respective second and first starts. Both should be firmly in the frame here. Hortense is likely to be on the early pace along with (7) ROYAL BLUE. Thomas Gillespie’s colt has been close in four of his five starts so far and just missed out by a nose at 1200M on June 1st. He can go well here under a brand-new apprentice, who is claiming 4kg. (8) MIRACLE ALICE hung outwards throughout her last start but still managed to finish 5th and with manners no doubt better today, she can get closer.
|Selections||(4) The Fact (3) Interceptor (6) Hortense (8) Miracle Alice|
|Next Best||7, 9|
|Fast Start||1, 6, 7, 8|
Race 4: Class 6 (1300M) Allowance / KRW 24 Million
After a nondescript trial, (6) VICAR BLADE ran on very nicely for 2nd on debut over 1200M, pushing the talented Christiano all the way to the line. It’s been seventeen long weeks since then, but he returns here surely ready to get his maiden win. He’s not necessarily going to be a fast starter but with the extra half-furlong today, should have too much. (9) PEACE RIDER finished four lengths behind Vicar Blade that day. He’s race three times since and has acquitted himself well each time and can get close once more. Aside from those two, we’re looking for improvers. (10) HWANGGEUM BEOLMA did indeed improve last start, registering a 4th place at this distance in what was arguably a deeper field than this and can aim to at least match today. (2) GEODAEHAN WONSEOK and (5) GOLDUI INYEON should contest the early lead and both are capable of staying involved at the business end of the race.
|Selections||(6) Vicar Blade (9) Peace Rider (10) Hwanggeum Beolma (2) Geodaehan Wonseok|
|Next Best||5, 4|
|Fast Start||2, 5|
Race 5: Class 5 (1000M) Handicap / KRW 40 Million
Bart Rice’s (11) CLEVER WILLIE was a five-length winner on what was his second career start – a full nine months after the first – on June 24th. It was at this distance and while he is up in class and will be coming out of the widest gate, he’s very much the one to beat here. (4) DANCING BLAZE was a touch unlucky in running last start four weeks ago but still finished a very creditable 5th, proving he can be competitive at this class and he can build on that here. (5) HAEDONG YEOGEOL remains a maiden after twenty-two attempts but comes in off the back of a 3rd and a 4th in her latest two, both at class and distance (more…)