Busan Friday: Race-By-Race Preview (April 26)

The weekend’s racing gets underway at Busan on Friday with 10 races from 11:30 to 18:00. Here are the previews:


Race 1: Class 6 (1300M) Allowance / KRW 24 Million

(2) USEUNG STORY has been close in each of his latest three, running on well for 3rd last time out in a slightly stronger race than this. He can set up camp behind the early speed here and come through strongly late on. (4) GRAND JILJU will be on pace from the start. He was an improved 2nd at this distance last time out a month ago and should be dangerous today. (3) FUNKY steps up in trip following some near-misses at 1000M while (8) GIDAEHAE and (9) HAPPY GATE are others who have shown some competency and can be in the hunt for money here.

Selections (2) Useung Story (4) Grand Jilju (8) Gidaehae (3) Funky
Next Best 9, 11
Fast Start 3, 4, 12

Race 2: Class 6 (1300M) Allowance / KRW 40 Million

(7) NUMBER ONE STAR ran 2nd on debut at this distance on March 22nd. He’s from the track’s top stable, should have come on for the run, and is the one to beat here. (9) MATCH WINNER has a 3rd and a 2nd from two outings so far, both at this distance and both times in reasonably company. He’ll be on speed from the gate and can go close again. (12) NAEGA SAEGANGJA has finished no worse than 4th in four starts to date. He ran 4th behind Number One Star last time out and while he has a bit to find if he is to win, he can maintain his record today. (8) TWO TWO SIMON and (10) TURBO SPEED are others in the placing hunt.

Selections (7) Number One Star (9) Match Winner (12) Naega Saegangja (8) Two Two Simon
Next Best 10, 5
Fast Start 8, 9, 11, 12

Race 3: Class 6 (1000M) Allowance / KRW 40 Million

Three-year-old maidens here with five first-time starters among the field. (4) MAJOR PUNCH has raced just the once, all the way back last September. She ran well too, finishing 3rd and did enough to be entered for a big juvenile race later in the month. She didn’t make it there but returns today having won a trial in good order at the end of March and could well be the one to beat. (2) TOHAM IMPACT ran well at this distance in February and while she had a hard time at 1300M on her return last month, should be better today. (10) RAINBOW PARK has run 4th in both outings so far and can aim to match or better that here. Of the first-timers, (7) FAMILY SONG and (8) TOHAM STAR look the best at this stage.

Selections (4) Major Punch (2) Toham Impact (8) Toham Star (7) Family Song
Next Best 10, 6
Fast Start 4, 6, 8, 11

Race 4: Class 6 (1600M) Allowance / KRW 40 Million

(8) RAON TOWN ran 2nd on debut over 1300M on March 29th, running on nicely. The extended trip today should suit and he’s the one to beat. (2) DANDI QUEEN was 3rd in that same race. She was a full five-lengths adrift but came from well back and is another who may well appreciate the opportunity to stretch out in distance. (6) ROYAL TICKET has only narrowly missed out in his latest two, both at the distance and he should be close again while (9) SINHEUNG BULPAE was a much improved 2nd when stepped up to this distance last start and while this is tougher, can run well once more. (4) HAENGBOK KOREA looks best of the rest.

Selections (8) Raon Town (2) Dandi Queen (6) Royal Ticket (9) Sinheung Bulpae
Next Best 4, 10
Fast Start 5, 6

Race 5: Class 5 (1600M) Allowance / KRW 40 Million

(5) MUJEOK VETERAN is two starts into a comeback and showed enough when 5th in stiff company last time out to suggest his form is improving and he’s not far away from (more…)


Cheongdam Dokki Back In Business

On the day his rival Dolkong landed back in Korea, Cheongdam Dokki put down a marker by returning to the winner’s circle in emphatic style as he successfully retained the Herald Business Trophy at Seoul Racecourse on Sunday afternoon.

Cheongdam Dokki Herald Business KRA

Cheongdam Dokki comfortbly scored in the Herald Business Cup (Pic: KRA)

Dolkong, winner of the Curlin Handicap and 3rd in the Al Maktoum Challenge R3 at the Dubai World Cup Carnival before being well-beaten in the World Cup itself, has somewhat usurped Cheongdam Dokki, who has both beaten and been beaten by since in several meetings since they started racing each other as juveniles in 2016. The returning hero touched down at Incheon Airport early Sunday morning and was safely ensconced in his quarantine stall by the time the Herald Business came under orders on a sunny Spring afternoon.

Making his second start for trainer Luigi Riccardi and piloted by Antonio Da Silva, the five-year-old Cheongdam Dokki was sent off a prohibitive favourite for the 2000M Listed event. He duly obliged, putting his rivals to the sword in the back straight before cruising home for an easy five-length victory.

After finishing 2nd in the Grand Prix Stakes in December, Cheongdam Dokki had three months off and moved barns in the process. He wasn’t at his best on his return in the Owners’ Association Trophy over 1200M a month ago but looked on fine form here, registering a fast time for the distance under 59kg. The up and comer Moonhak Chief ran 2nd, just pipping Shamrocker.

Antonio Da Silva Herald Business KRA

Antonio Da Silva with Luigi Riccardi (sunglasses) looking on (Pic: KRA)

It was a thirteenth win for Cheongdam Dokki on his twenty-second career start. He had only once run faster at the distance, when winning the KRA Cup Classic in 2017, but that was when carrying just 55kg.  It was faster than any of Triple Nine’s four President’s Cup wins and in big races, only Dongnanui Gangja, in the Owner’s Cup in 2009 (when that race was at 2000M), has actually gone quicker and that mark is still the track record – but the track was wet and fast that day.

Cheongdam Dokki is back in serious business.


Seoul & Busan Sunday: Cheongdam Dokki To Defend Herald Business Trophy – Race-By-Race Preview (April 21)

A year ago, Cheongdam Dokki added the Herald Business Trophy to the list of races he had usurped Clean Up Joy as holder of on his way to becoming the highest rated horse at Seoul. On Sunday, it’s his turn to defend as he faces seven rivals in this year’s renewal of the Listed 2000M race. There are 11 races at Seoul from 10:45 to 18:00 and 6 at Busan from 12:40 to 17:05 (Busan Selections at bottom):

Cheongdam Dokki 2

Cheongdam Dokki goes at Seoul Sunday

If he fails, it will be a surprise. Cheongdam Dokki rounded out 2018 with a game but ultimately failed attempt to take the big domestic race that still eludes him, when he was 2nd in the Grand Prix Stakes. He was then moved to the stable of Italian trainer Luigi Riccardi and had three months off before returning to action in the Owners’ Cup in March. Dropped back to 1200M, he only managed 5th place as Silver Wolf took the honours but he should make no mistake this time.

The main danger is Moonhak Chief. 6th in last year’s Grand Prix, he has begun his four-year-old campaign in fine style with back-to-back class 1 victories over 2000M, both times beating Shamrocker, who returns for another crack here. He has the potential to be one of the year’s break-out stars but may not be ready to beat Cheongdam Dokki just yet.

As for Shamrocker, now six-years-old, he’s spent his career chasing first Clean Up Joy and then Cheongdam Dokki on his way to racking up nine runner-up finishes. A good solid horse in his own right, he will surely be there or thereabouts in terms of the places on Sunday, although a win is a longshot.

As for the rest, Road Winner is a winner of seven from eleven but while he won back to back class 1 races around the turn of the year, he was well back in the Grand Prix Stakes and is yet to prove himself in true elite company. The nine-year-old Wonder Bolt, Asia Challenge Cup winner back in 2015 also goes around one more time. Though he has lost a yard of pace, he is still capable of running into the minor money.

Race 1: Class 6 (1300M) Allowance / KRW 40 Million

A maiden for three-year-olds to kick things off. (4) CHOEGANG MAGIC debuted with a solid 4th place over this distance on March 23rd and Luigi Riccardi’s colt looks to have solid claims to break through today. (11) GABO PULL QUEEN ran on well for 3rd over 1000M on debut and steps up in trip today with it likely to suit. Moon Se Young taking over on board won’t do any harm either. (3) SPADE MASHIE ran nicely on debut in February and looked decent in a trial two weeks ago. He’ll likely be on the early pace and it’s not impossible he could go all the way while (10) BLUE BAND was a useful 5th on debut and can build on it today. Of the three debut-makers, (2) SMART GUNHWANG looked the best in trials.

Selections (4) Choegang Magic (3) Spade Mashie (11) Gabo Pull Queen (10) Blue Band
Next Best 2, 8
Fast Start 3, 5, 10

Race 2: Class 6 (1000M) Allowance / KRW 40 Million

More three-year-old maidens and (2) BLACK WINGWING looks ready to win. She has two 3rd places among four starts so far, both at this distance and from gate 2, should be leading from the start. She’ll be joined on pace by principal danger, (1) BORN ANGEL, who already has a 2nd place to his name and comes in following a solid 3rd last time. (7) LA VIE EST BELLE struggled over 1300M in both his latest outings but should be much more comfortable today dropped back in trip. (4) CHEONSE MANSE and (5) GOLD PERILLA are others in the hunt.

Selections (2) Black Wingwing (1) Born Angel (7) La Vie Est Belle (5) Gold Perilla
Next Best 4, 3
Fast Start 1, 2, 5

Race 3: Class 5 (1000M) Handicap / KRW 40 Million

(3) ACHIEVE made all to score by a full seven-lengths on debut back in January. He has a couple of injury setbacks since then and returns up in class, but he has enough ability to win again. It won’t be easy though. (1) BLUE FIRE remains a maiden after nine attempts but has proven competitive at this level and comes in after a good 3rd in a similar race to this last start. He’ll be on pace early and could make his breakthrough today. (2) SUPER YEOWANG got her maiden win last June and then wasn’t seen for eight months. She’s registered a 4th and a 5th in two starts back and should be in the frame for more improvement today. (10) CHOWON MARU and (11) P.K.JEONSA, up in class after finishing 1st and 2nd over this distance at class 6 a month ago, should both be competitive too.

Selections (3) Achieve (1) Blue Fire (2) Super Yeowang (10) Chowon Maru
Next Best 11, 6
Fast Start 1, 2, 3, 11

Race 4: Class 5 (1700M) Handicap / KRW 40 Million

(5) MYEONGJIN MAN just missed out by a neck when 2nd at class and distance on March 23rd. It was his first try around two-turns; it seemed to suit, and he can go one better today. Plenty of others enter off the back of good results. (4) DAE BYEONHWA and (7) STAR LIST came home 3rd and 4th when they raced each other over 1300M on March 30th. The latter steps up to this trip for the first time but both look capable here. (3) LUCKY BONGHWA remains a maiden but ran a strong class and distance 3rd a month ago and is perhaps the biggest threat to the top pick, likely trying to lead early. (12) SZERENCSE another in the hunt.

Selections (5) Myeongjin Man (3) Lucky Bonghwa (4) Dae Byeonhwa (7) Star List
Next Best 12, 11
Fast Start 3, 4, 7

Race 5: Class 4 (1700M) Handicap / KRW 60 Million

(8) HAMBAK MISO finished 2nd, beaten a head, in a very tight finish at class and distance on March 23rd. It was a good performance and he is favoured to come from off the pace to win here. (1) STORMY and (7) MIGHTY MAMBO came home 4th and 5th respectively in that same race, just over a length behind Hambak Miso and both have claims to go well today. Mighty Mambo actually beat Hambak Miso at the distance in February. The main danger though could be (3) TAP LUCK. It took him a couple of goes to figure things out but he’s up in class and in distance today following a commanding four-length win over 1300M in February and looks to have potential for more.

Selections (8) Hambak Miso (3) Tap Luck (1) Stormy (7) Mighty Mambo
Next Best 6, 4
Fast Start 1, 3, 4

Race 6: Class 4 (1700M) Handicap / KRW 60 Million

(2) MONSTER QUEEN and (1) JEJUI HEUKSEON finished 4th and 5th respectively with just a neck between them when they raced each other at class and distance on March 17th. (more…)

Seoul Saturday: Race-By-Race Preview (April 20)

Racing returns to Seoul on Saturday with 11 races from 10:45 to 18:00. Here are the previews:

(단신2) 출발 참관 프로그램 (2)

Race 1: Class 6 (1300M) Allowance / KRW 24 Million

(10) HOPE KINGDOM has a best of 2nd which came at this distance in February. He comes in having run 5th in a much stiffer contest than this last time and will take some beating here. (6) FLOWER ROAD has improved across three starts so far and has scope for more development while (9) CHEONGDAM JEPAE has been knocking on the door for some time now and shouldn’t be far away. (2) CHOEGANG DIA and (4) HAWK ARIRANG are others who can improve.

Selections (10) Hope Kingdom (6) Flower Road (9) Cheongdam Jepae (2) Choegang Dia
Next Best 4, 3
Fast Start 2, 6, 9, 12

Race 2: Class 6 (1300M) Allowance / KRW 40 Million

After a strong of 4th place finishes, (2) NEW PARADIGM improved to 2nd last start in an all-filly race at this distance. She’s nicely drawn to get on pace here and could well lead all the way. She’ll be joined at the front by (1) SEMYEONG STORM, who ran a close at hand 4th on what was just his second outing three weeks ago and he looks primed for more improvement here, as does (9) CHEONJI POKPUNG, who has come close in each of his three latest efforts. (3) PRIVATE MAN and (6) BEST SINHWA are others in at least the placing hunt.

Selections (2) New Paradigm (1) Semyeong Storm (9) Cheonji Pokpung (3) Private Man
Next Best 6, 4
Fast Start 1, 2, 6

Race 3: Class 5 (1700M) Allowance / KRW 40 Million

After two 3rd place finishes, (4) SIMJANGUI GODONG got his maiden win at the third time of asking, scoring by a length over 1300M on March 24th. He’s up in class and distance today but neither should be a problem and he can make it two in a row. It took (2) NANGMAN STAR twenty-six attempts to get his first win, which he final did last start. It was at this class and distance and while he carries an extra couple if kilos today, a repeat is not impossible. (10) FLYING JOY comes in with recent form reading well and should go close while (1) GALAXY PEACE, another up in class and distance after a maiden win, and (11) BULHUUI MYOENGGOG, are others in the hunt.

Selections (4) Simjangui Godong (2) Nangman Star (10) Flying Joy (1) Galaxy Peace
Next Best 11, 3
Fast Start 4, 10

Race 4: Class 5 (1300M) Handicap / KRW 40 Million

(8) BLACK PARTY registered her maiden win at the fourth attempt with a front-running performance over 1300M a month ago. She’s up in class here but the stable is in form and a repeat looks on the cards here. (3) LUMINESCE was just beaten out by a nose at this distance in February before running 5th on his latest effort. He can come from just off the pace here and should be a threat. (2) TRI THUNDER usually runs into one or two too quick but can hold her own at this level while (1) CHOM NIA and (4) BOLD NINER are placing chances too.

Selections (8) Black Party (3) Luminesce (4) Bold Niner (2) Tri Thunder
Next Best 1, 5
Fast Start 6, 7, 8

Race 5: Class 4 (1300M) Handicap / KRW 75 Million

Fillies and mares only. Four of these raced each other at class and distance on March 17th and it was (2) YORI JORI who finished the best of the in 2nd place, albeit twelve-lengths behind a strong winner. She was almost 40/1 that day but will warrant more respect today. That said, (6) EMORY SOCKS has a decent shout at overturning that form. He should be looking to get to the front early here and if he can do that, he can win. (1) SOULY MAJESTIC was an also-ran that day but has potential to improve. Among those that didn’t go in that race, (8) JOUNIGA and (9) SEOUL QUEEN look to be the best.

Selections (6) Emory Socks (8) Jouniga (2) Yori Jori (1) Souly Majestic
Next Best 9, 4
Fast Start 5, 6, 11, 12

Race 6: Class 4 (1300M) Handicap / KRW 60 Million

(3) NIMUI HYANGGI has won two of his latest three to be rapidly promoted to this level. He made all both times and while this is a stiffer task, he could well be equal to it. It’s a (more…)

Good Friday Busan: Race-By-Race Preview (April 19)

It’s Good Friday at Busan and there are 10 races from 11:30 to 18:00. Here is the race-by-race, horse-by-horse guide:

Success Story Busan Ilbo 2017

It’s Friday! It’s Busan!

RACE 1: Class 6 (1000M) Allowance – 3yo KOR-bred Fillies / KRW 40 Million

  1. PARTY LION – 2nd favourite on debut over 1300M after promising trials but was one-paced and only managed 8th of 11. Drops back in trip for return and can improve.
  2. DAEGYO – Debut-maker. First foal out of a dam who is half-sister to Tough Win, who won many big races here. Few clues from trials – finished behind Mach Queen and ahead of Jeongseong Beach. Watching brief first-up.
  3. PERFECT ANGEL – Only beat one home on debut last month behind Chodong Jinju. That was in line with expectations and they won’t be much higher today.
  4. TIZBE – Debut-maker. Half-sister to three winners at this class. Went through two trials finishing in front of Boryeong Hwanho in the latest of them. Foreign owner, trainer & jockey.
  5. RAPTOR CORE – Favourite on debut on March 22nd having won a trial and performed well enough in 2nd place. Should be on pace here and make no mistake today. Hot favourite.
  6. CHODONG JINJU – Raced twice and improved to 4th on latest at this distance on March 15th. Took an age to get going but ran on nicely and with a better start could be in the hunt.
  7. YESULUI GYEUNGJI – Debut-maker. 2nd foal from a mare who won 10 of 40 starts here. Older brother 1 win from 6 starts. Trailed adequately. Watch the market.
  8. JEONGSEONG BEACH – Debut-maker. Half sister to a couple of good colts who both had careers cut short through injury. Trialled behind Mach Queen and Daegyo but top trainer and jockey and good run possible.
  9. BORYEONG HWANHO – Debut-maker. Only foal from the dam. Trialled up behind Tizbe and better to watch first-up.
  10. JOYPEL – Last on debut behind Party Lion. Sent back to trial. If she can get to the front from the start, she may go better, but others favoured.
  11. MACH QUEEN – Debut-maker. Put in a very promising trial last month in a decent time and ahead of two other first-timers here. A chance.
  12. GWANGMOK CHEONWANG – Six months between her first two starts and didn’t impress on either. Top trainer and jockey combination though and improvement not impossible.

VERDICT: A maiden for three-year-old fillies kicks things off and all roads lead to (5) RAPTOR CORE, who it’s hard to see getting beaten here. She was a competent 2nd on debut and looks far ahead of the rest in terms of development. (1) PARTY LION didn’t really do herself justice on debut at 1300M but can be backed for improvement dropped down to the minimum distance today, while (6) CHODONG JINJU’s improvement last time, despite the bad start, gives some cause for optimism. Of the debut-makers, (11) MACH QUEEN is best placed to go well first up with (7) YESULUI GYEUNGJI another who should be competitive.

Selections (5) Raptor Core (11) Mach Queen (1) Party Lion (7) Yesului Gyeungji
Next Best 6, 8
Fast Start 2, 5, 11, 12

RACE 2: Class 6 (1300M) Allowance – KOR-bred 3yo / KRW 40 Million

  1. WILD GERANIUM – Well back on debut behind Final Wind before running 6th over a mile on return a month ago. Began well that day but weakened and can continue to make progress here.
  2. YEONGGWANGUI CHEER – 7th and 5th in two starts so far, both at 1000M. Top trainer and jockey and ay appreciate the additional trip.
  3. CHANGE BACK – Improved 3rd on second start at this distance on March 22nd but was still six-lengths behind Ultra Power. Can improve again but will struggle to overturn that form.
  4. ACE GIRL – Has been sent off at three-figure odds for all three outings to date and while there has been some progress, she’ll be a big long-shot again.
  5. ULTRA POWER – 6th behind Tamna List before running a good 2nd behind Doctor Week at this distance on March 22nd having led for much of the race. Should be on pace again and has solid claims.
  6. FINAL WIND – Much improved 2nd, albeit well beaten by a good winner, on first try at this distance on March 8th. Will need to improve again but top jockey booked.
  7. CHEONNYEONUIHEUIMANG – Debut-maker. Half-sister to a couple of worthy but unspectacular plodders. Trialled twice and was better in the most recent. Tough ask first-up.
  8. TAMNA LIST – Overcame some bumping at the start to run 2nd on March 15th having previously beaten three of these, including Ultra Punch, on debut a month earlier. Real chance.
  9. TIZ HERO – Debut-maker. Third foal from dam who won 6 of 41 starts here. Very slow in trials. Stablemate of Wild Geranium and despite top jockey booking, not recommended first-up.
  10. SATURDAY QUEEN – Offered little in three starts so far and big improvement will be required here.
  11. KOSAT – Best of 7th from three outings so far. Back up in trip today and lots to find.
  12. LOGIN KOREA – Offered little in two starts to date, both at 1000M. Top jockey on today but still looks up against it.

VERDICT: (5) ULTRA POWER has improved across three starts so far and led for much of the way over this distance last time out before ultimately being beaten by a good winner. He’s well drawn to get to the lead early here and he may be tough to catch. (8) TAMNA LIST has already beaten Ultra Power and can continue the positive start to his career by being a danger here. (6) FINAL WIND was much-improved on her latest outing last month and can maintain her momentum today. (2) YEONGGWANGUI CHEER and (3) CHANGE BACK look best of the rest.

Selections (5) Ultra Power (8) Tamna List (6) Final Wind (2) Yeonggwangui Cheer
Next Best 3, 12
Fast Start 1, 5, 6


RACE 3: Class 6 (1000M) Allowance – KOR-bred 3yo / KRW 40 Million 

  1. DAGYEONG HUIMANG – Last of 12 on debut last month and sent back to trial. Slow in trial too and not recommended here.
  2. B.K. JOHN – 10th of 11 on debut last month, beaten by Star Boy. Lots to find.
  3. BAMBI SKY – Debut-maker. First foal from his dam. Offered few clues in his trial and a watching brief first-up is advisable.
  4. STAR BOY – 8th and 11th in two starts so far, well back behind Baramgwa Gureum on latest. Outsider.
  5. BUNDANUIBYEOKNEOME – Debut-maker. Dam has produced four-winners and this one trialled up encouragingly. Top jockey on and a chance first-up.
  6. AUTO SONIC – Debut-maker. From the track’s top stable, he trialled up behind Baramgwa Gureum but didn’t do much wrong. Could be anything – watch the market.
  7. B.K. MARVEL – Last in both starts so far and although she was a touch less slow in the latest of those, she can’t be recommended here.
  8. TIME WINNER – Debut-maker. A couple of half-siblings have had some ability, but he only scraped though his trial in a slow time.
  9. TIME TOGETHER – Six months between his first two outings last September and this March and neither were impressive. Lots of improvement required.
  10. BARAMGWA GUREUM – Improved 2nd on her second start on March 29th having led throughout the early part of the race. She’s the one to beat here.
  11. PERDIDO ROCKET – Debut-maker. She trailed competently alongside experienced racehorses and is in with a shout of a money finish first-up.
  12. KKEUTPAN CLOSER – Debuted without distinction in December, after which he was sent back to trial. Performed adequately in fast March trial and can be better today.

VERDICT: It’s hard to look past (10) BARAMGWA GUREUM in this relatively weak maiden. The Peter Wolsley filly led for much of the way around on her second start three weeks ago only to weaken late on for 2nd but should have come on for that and can lead all the way here. None of the others with experience are easy to recommend, so we’ll look to the first-time starters to find the main dangers. (5) BUNDANUIBYEOKNEOME didn’t look out of place when trialling alongside experienced horses last month and should go well first-up while (6) AUTO SONIC did nothing wrong in his heat either and the stable will tempt plenty. (11) PERDIDO ROCKET also looked competent enough in a trial three weeks ago and can aim for some prize money.

Selections (10) Baramgwa Gureum (6) Auto Sonic (5) Bundanuibyeokneome (11) Perdido Rocket
Next Best 2, 7
Fast Start 2, 10


RACE 4: Class 6 (1600M) Allowance – KOR-bred / KRW 24 Million

  1. FINAL FRONT – Sent off at odds of 80/1 last time on March 22nd but beat three of these on his way to 3rd place. Warrants significantly more respect today.
  2. DAEROUI KKUM – Held his own over four starts so far despite finishing no better than 5th. Can sit off the early pace and possibly run into a place.
  3. OPEN SESAME – Sent off at odds approaching 350/1 on debut three weeks ago and ran like it. Big Outsider again.
  4. FUSION PARK – Getting closer with a 3rd place last time at 1300M and steps up to a mile for the first time. Likely to be on pace early and has claims.
  5. GOLDUI INYEON – No better than 3rd from ten attempts and well back behind Fusion Park last time. Others better.
  6. YEONGBONGSAN – 5th behind Final Front and Dynamic Bolt at a mile last time out but was 2nd at this distance on March 1st. Should be close.
  7. BUSAN MAGIC – Best finish of 5th and hasn’t shown much in the way of speed. Needs to improve to challenge here.
  8. KING OF JOY – 7th on debut at a mile last month behind Powerful Pit. Too early to recommend but may have come on for that run.
  9. JANGGUNEUI JILJU – A stablemate of Fusion Park, he debuted inauspiciously last November but was much better on return three weeks ago and can continue to progress here. Interesting outsider.
  10. DYNAMIC BOLT – Looks to be figuring things out with a 3rd and two 4th place finishes from her latest three. A neck behind Final Front last start, a top jockey is booked today, and she could win.
  11. NEPTUNE – The most experienced in the race although not much of that experience is good and plenty of these have beaten him already.
  12. POWERFUL PIT – 2nd in weak maiden at a mile on March 8th before running 5th at the same distance three weeks ago. Placing chances.

VERDICT: Tricky race but we’ll go with (4) FUSION PARK, who has beaten a few of these already, to continue to progress and from gate 4 to get on the lead early and go all the way. (10) DYNAMIC BOLT’s recent efforts have been promising and she looks set for more development here. She’ll also challenge for the early lead and has claims. (1) FINAL FRONT beat three of these at this distance last start and should beat plenty again. (2) DAEROUI KKUM and (6) YEONGBONGSAN are others with at least placing chances.

Selections (4) Fusion Park (10) Dynamic Bolt (1) Final Front (6) Yeongbongsan
Next Best 2, 9
Fast Start 4, 10


RACE 5: Class 5 (1600M) Allowance / KRW 40 Million

  1. KING STORM – A long time since her solitary win and recent form has been cold. Up against it here.
  2. URANUS J – Returned to form with 2nd place in a stiffer race at 1300M a month ago. A previous try at this trip didn’t go well but he looks ready for another crack here.
  3. BULMYEORUIMARIPGAN – One-paced but stays running at that one pace all day and plenty usually come back to him. Not sure if it is even possible for him to win a race but if it is, today’s his best chance.
  4. TWO TWO TURBO – Maiden win came at 1300M in March before running 5th on first try at class and distance two weeks ago. Likely to get an easy lead here and can stay on for at least a place.
  5. MANY DESCENDANT – Well back behind Two Two Turbo last time and will struggle to overturn that form here.
  6. UJU JEONGBEOL – Slightly disappointing 7th behind Two Two Turbo two weeks ago but was a class and distance 3rd the time before. Jockey booking is a plus.
  7. HWANHAN SESANG – Longest shot on the board when running 3rd at class and distance three weeks ago in a better-looking race than this. A repeat is possible.
  8. WANBONG – Offered little in his first twelve outings but has suddenly found form and a maiden win last time out. Up in class today but could keep his momentum going.

VERDICT: (2) URANUS J lost his way slightly after getting his maiden win last September but looks to have figured out this class finally with a 2nd place at 1300M last month, albeit seven-lengths back behind a good winner. If he can get the trip this time, he can win. If he doesn’t then it leads us to one who we know will and that’s (3) BULMYEORUIMARIPGAN. He has no speed at all but plods on and picks off lots late on. Today could be the day he finally picks them all off. (4) TWO TWO TURBO can get an unchallenged early lead and has claims to stay on while (7) HWANHAN SESANG, a useful 3rd last time, should be in at least the placing hunt again.

Selections (2) Uranus J (3) Bulmyeoruimaripgan (4) Two Two Turbo (7) Hwanhan Sesang
Next Best 6, 8
Fast Start 4


RACE 6: Class 5 (1300M) Handicap / KRW 40 Million

  1. FIGHT MAGIC – Maiden winner over this trip at the fifth time of asking a month ago. Up in class today but should be on pace early and should be competitive.
  2. NORMAL CLASSIC – Made all for a maiden win at this distance in February but struggled for position from a wide draw on first time at this level three weeks ago. Should be better today.
  3. NEW JACK SWING – Good 3rd at class and distance on February but well back on latest outing. Inconsistent.
  4. LOVE LETTER – Struggled in four starts at this level since maiden win last November. Hard to recommend here.
  5. BRITE ACOUNT – Still a maiden after twenty-seven attempts and recent form offers little cause for optimism over that changing any time soon.
  6. JOYFUL MEMORY – An eighteen-race maiden but enters in good form. 2nd behind the useful Tongil Hanguk in February then 6th to the very useful Seobu Cat last month. A chance here.
  7. CHEONSANG OREUM – Bad day at the office last start but she’d been going well prior to that and is worth another chance here. Top jockey on today.
  8. JAESAENGMYEONGNI – Drops back in trip after an unsuccessful spin around 1800M. Has some decent class and distance results and shouldn’t be too far away.
  9. GIRL CRUSH – Got promoted to this level by virtue of three 3rd place finishes and hasn’t found it easy. Back in trip today but an outsider.
  10. MIR KAN – Well off the pace in recent outings and little reason to think that will change today. Big Outsider.
  11. MONEY BLACK HOLE – Shown ability and while disappointing last time, he was found to have bled. Trialled up well at the end of March and could be a factor.
  12. TRIPLE BOSS – A 4th and a pair of 5th place finishes in his latest three. Capable of at least matching those here.


Exchange Race Round-Up: Medici Glory Impresses At Seoul, Wolsley Doubles At Busan

There were four valuable exchange races in Korea on Sunday, two of them restricted to locally-bred three-year-old fillies and two for three-year-old imports. Here’s what happened:

Tokyo City Keiba Trophy

9/1 chance Smile Girl (Federalist), trained by Lee Shin Young and ridden by Lee Hyeok came through late to snatch victory after pre-race favourite Match Queen weakened badly in the home straight. Daddy Glory was 2nd while Luigi Riccardi’s Mamma Roma closed late for a worthy 3rd.

Jockey Club of Turkey (TJK) Trophy

Medici Glory (Gemologist) put in the performance of the day to crush what had looked to be a very strong field. Trained by Song Moon Gil and ridden by Yoo Seung-wan, the US import defeated Havana Charlie and the previously unbeaten Global Captain, by ten-lengths in a fast time.

Selangor Turf Club Trophy

Peter Wolsley’s filly Top Of World (Federalist) put herself firmly into the Oaks picture registering her fourth win on her seventh start and her first since last September. Thomas Gillespie’s Yeonggwangui Sidae came home 2nd to make it a foreign-trainer quinella.

China Horse Industry Association Trophy

Peter Wolsley completed a double, saddling Pro Consul (Freedom Child) to victory. The US import, who was ridden by Seo Seung-un moves on to three wins from five and is unbeaten in two this year.

Exchange Race Sunday: Seoul & Busan – Race-By-Race Preview (April 14)

Sunday sees International Exchange races at both Seoul (11 races from 10:45 to 18:00) and Busan (6 races from 12:40 to 17:05) and this year, an intriguing program has been put together for three-year-old fillies and imported horses of the same age. Just over a month out from the Oaks, it’s a chance to see some of the leading fancies for the fillies’ Classic and in the other races, to see some of the hottest young imported talent racing against each other. Here are the previews with horse-by-horse comments for the Exchange races (Busan below): 

Spring Back KRA

Spring Back is among the exciting young imports in action on Sunday

Race 1: Class 6 (1300M) Allowance / KRW 40 Million

A maiden for fillies only to kick things off and with a 5th and a 3rd from her two starts so far, (2) MENI GRAND is set to be hot favourite to make her breakthrough here. (8) SOLID was much-improved 2nd on her second career start over 1000M last month. She’s out of a Korean Group winner and while she is back up in trip can continue to make progress here. (5) JIOBANA similarly improved on her latest outing and tries this distance for the first time. She may benefit from Alan Munro in the saddle today. (3) COLORS DE LAGO and first-time starter (7) CHOEGANG GONGJU are others to take note of.

Selections (2) Meni Grand (8) Solid (5) Jiobana (7) Choegang Gongju
Next Best 3, 9
Fast Start 3, 5, 8

Race 2: Class 5 (1000M) Handicap / KRW 40 Million

(3) RICH RULES was a winner on debut and then ran 3rd on her first try at this class on March 2nd. She’ll be on pace here and has every chance of coming out on top. The other standout is (4) GAL IP. She got her maiden win on her fifth start last time and while up in class today, there looks to be more to come from her. She’ll be challenging for the lead early too. (8) SEMYEONG GISANG was a good 2nd on his first try at this level last month and is another who can go close. (9) GEUP HAENG MA drops back in trip after winning at the level over 1300M on March 10th and must be taken seriously too.

Selections (3) Rich Rules (4) Gal Ip (8) Semyeong Gisang (9) Geup Haeng Ma
Next Best 6, 5
Fast Start 1, 3, 8

Race 3: Class 4 (1000M) Allowance / KRW 60 Million

Could it be (4) KKEULEOJUNEUN SON’s time at last? She remains a maiden following sixteen attempts but is by no means a bad racehorse with four 2nds and four 3rds to her name. The latest 2nd was last time, in a decent race at this distance and it could finally be her day. Should she find one or two too quick again then (1) WILD FIGHT and (8) GO GO BI look leading contenders. Both have a best of 3rd place from three starts apiece and have improvement in them. (12) CHAPEL ACE has three wins to his name and showed signs of a return to form with a good 2nd last time. There is one debut-maker and (6) FLORIDA POWER gone well in two trials and arrives with decent claims to go well first-up.

Selections (4) Kkeuleojuneun Son (8) Go Go Bi (1) Wild Fight (12) Chapel Ace
Next Best 6, 9
Fast Start 3, 5, 9

Race 4: Class 6 (1000M) Allowance / KRW 40 Million

(10) FULL MOON OCEAN has shown steady progress across four starts so far, all at this distance, culminating in 2nd place last time. He’s a front-runner so will need to overcome the wide-draw but he’s the one they need to beat here. (5) JANGSAN EX similarly improved on his second outing, running a good 4th and can maintain his momentum here while (6) O PI M J was disappointing when well-backed over 1300M last start and should be better eased back in trip today. (1) BAEKSANG had a hard time on debut in February but can be given another chance today, two months on and under a much lighter weight. There are two first-time starters and (11) CAPTAIN BEST caught the eye in trials and could go well first-up.

Selections (10) Full Moon Ocean (5) Jangsan Ex (6) O Pi M J (11) Captain Best
Next Best 1, 3
Fast Start 3, 5, 10

Race 5: Class 5 (1300M) Handicap / KRW 40 Million

Really competitive little race. (5) SOMETHING NOBODYNO has a win and two runner-up finishes from three starts so far. He ran 2nd behind a very good winner last start, and while he is up in distance for the first time today, he has every chance of returning to the winner’s circle. (10) VICAR BRACING could start as favourite though. He’s up in class following an eye-catching nine-length win over this distance on March 2nd and while he has drawn the widest gate, he can run on strongly and can win. (3) BARAMEUL GEURIDA is up in class too after a similarly easy on the eye seven-length score back in February. He made all that day and is nicely drawn to get the front. (2) HANIL MAGIC and (8) MONEY ZIF are others who can go close.

Selections (10) Vicar Bracing (5) Something Nobodyno (3) Barameul Geurida (8) Money Zif
Next Best 2, 9
Fast Start 1, 3, 5

Race 6: Class 4 (1000M) Allowance / KRW 60 Million

(9) WELLNESS K has had a stop/start career so far but now he’s finally getting a strong of runs together, he’s looked good, improving to a maiden win last time at this distance. He’s carrying more weight today but looks to have a fair shout of a repeat. Primary danger is (8) WINNING BLADE, who bounced back from a disappointing run in Seoul’s top juvenile race last October to win over this distance in November. He’s only raced once this term, finishing 5th at 1200M in January but coming back from a spell and back down at what seems his best distance, he can win. (7) BIG GARLAND remains a maiden but was 4th first-up after three months off last start and can go close again. (5) RICHARDOFNEWSTEAD and (10) SANTOS are others in the hunt.

Selections (9) Wellness K (8) Winning Blade (7) Big Garland (10) Santos
Next Best 5, 1
Fast Start 1, 3, 7, 8

Race 7: Class 5 (1700M) Handicap / KRW 40 Million

(7) DELTA BROTHER got his maiden win over 1300M in February and then ran a strong 2nd on his first try at this class and distance a month ago, beating a few of these along the way. He’ll go to the front early and could well go all the way. (10) BARAM KING beat (3) DOUBLE GOLD and (1) BLACK GINGA on his way to victory at class and distance on March 10th. The draw has not been kind today, but he warrants respect based on that run and can go close again. Double Gold was 3rd in that race and can be competitive again while we will expect improvement from Black Ginga, who came home 4th as favourite – the second time in a row Double Gold has beaten him – and should be better today. (2) RAON MIRACLE is another for who recent form reads well and who should be in the mix at the business end.

Selections (7) Delta Brother (1) Black Ginga (2) Raon Miracle (10) Baram King
Next Best 3, 6
Fast Start 4, 7

Race 8: Class Open (1400M) Allowance (3yo KOR bred Fillies) / KRW 150 Million – TOKYO CITY KEIBA TROPHY

  1. SMILE GIRL – 4th behind Daddy Glory in January before beating Mamma Roma on her way to a three-length win at 1300M in February. Stepped up to 1700M last time to run 2nd at class 4. Settles just behind early pace and top-four finish expected.
  2. BEST HILL – Won her first two over 1000M but has had a harder time at class 4 and at longer distances. Not a fast starter but can run on. Still scope for improvement but others favoured here.
  3. DADDY GLORY – Beat Smarty Adele and Smile Girl on way to victory over 1300M in January before finishing 3rd behind Match Queen on latest start. She hung out around the turn last time for which a warning was issued and if she fixes that, she has a big chance of overturning the form.
  4. MAMMA ROMA – Comes in off a run of three consecutive runner-up finishes but was well-beaten by Smile Girl in February. Another for whom the extra distance may be a plus, but improvement will be needed.
  5. GREEN DARC – Both wins came at 1000M last autumn, she was last seen running way down the track over 1700M in February. One of the outsiders today.
  6. MATCH QUEEN – She’s won three in a row and four from five in total. Her latest saw her make all over 1300M at class 4 to win by twelve-lengths and while she goes the extra half furlong for the first time, she’s got solid claims to lead all the way again.
  7. BAKCHAOREUM – Registered three wins in a row over the turn of the year at 1000M and 1300M. Blew the start after being fractious in the barriers last time which explains her poor result. She needs a quick start and if she gets it, she can go close.
  8. WONDERFUL TRUTH – Won her first two and while she has found it tougher since, she has been racing in good company. The only one of these to run in the Sports Seoul Classic Trial last month, she led that race early only to finish 6th. She will try to lead again, and experience of the distance may help her here.
  9. SMARTY ADELE – Beaten four-lengths by Daddy Glory in January, she bounced back to score by eight-lengths over 1300M at class 5 n March 3rd. More improvement needed here as it won’t be easy to lead but she could be an interesting outsider.