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Myeongmun Gamun is Horse of the Year

2008 Review Part 2: The Horses
Myeongmun Gamun won the Horse of the Year award for 2008 but while the Seoul based seven year old gelding was the top money earner of the year, it was Busan horses who dominated the three year old ranks, winning all the classics. In his fourth season, Myeongmun Gamun was imperious. A reversal at the hands of the filly Baekpa was the only setback prior to his second consecutive third place finish in the Grand Prix race where again, he was the first domestically bred horse home. Highlight of the year was his retention of the President’s Cup in November when he broke through the billion won prize money mark.

Outstanding filly of the year was Busan based Jeolho Chance. Running against males in all but her Oaks victory, she was only narrowly defeated by Gaseon Janngun in the final strides of the Minister’s Cup in October. For Gaeseon Janggun, that victory came after running second in both the KRA Cup Mile and the Derby. The Derby itself was run on a saturated track and rank outsider Ebony Storm took the honours but hasn’t won since. Cup Mile winner Rainmaker also subsequently disappointed and is now out injured until at least March. Prolific winner of the year at Busan was Areumdaun Jilju. The four year old harvested big handicaps throughout the year and is possibly the most feared horse on the peninsula right now.

The absence of any domestically bred three year olds in Seoul’s top ten speaks volumes about the dismal three year old crop at the track this year. For the imports, Dongbanui Gangja finally came through in the Grand Prix to leap into second place overall for the year and become Korea’s top imported horse. Through Jeolho Chance and Areumdaun Jilju, Didyme is sire of the year and his sire, Dixieland Band is also the damsire of the other two in Busan’s top four.

Seoul Race Park – Top Horses 2008
1. Myeongmun Gamun (KOR) [Future Quest – Guided Dancer (Incinderator)] G 7 – 7/5/1/1
2. Dongbanui Gangja (USA) [Broken Vow – Maremaid (Storm Bird)] C 3 – 9/5/3/1
3. Baekpa (KOR) [Revere – Grey Crest (Gold Crest)] F 4 – 10/2/3/0
4. Namchonuijijon (KOR) (Concept Win – Intriga (Lord At Law)] H 4 – 9/3/3/0
5. Secret Weapon (KOR) [Native Regent – Aheadofthetimes (Gold Alert)] H 5 – 9/6/0/0
6. Top Point (KOR) [Tom Cruiser – Mooncello (Northern Baby)] F 4 – 7/5/0/1
7. Good Day (KOR) [Double Honor – Fanciest (Lear Fan)] H 4 – 8/4/2/1
8. Geumsuni (KOR) [Big Sur – Monster (Waikiki Star)] F 4 – 10/3/3/0
9. Saerounbisul (NZ) [Danske – Miss Golly (Casual Lies)] G 4 – 9/2/2/3
10. Bally Brae (USA) [Yarrow Brae – Political Bluff (Unaccounted For)] G 6 – 7/2/3/1

Busan Race Park – Top Horses 2008
1. Gaeseon Janggun (KOR) [Duality – Diamond Star (Dixieland Band)] C 3 – 8/3/3/0
2. Jeolho Chance (KOR) [Didyme – Harboring (Boston Harbor)] F 3 – 9/3/1/1
3. Ebony Storm (KOR) [Buster’s Daydream – Sorority Jazz (Dixieland Band) C 3 – 11/3/2/2
4. Areumdaun Jilju (KOR) [Didyme – Chills of Nepal (Nepal) H 4 – 9/7/2/0
5. Rainmaker (KOR) [Revere – Wandering Katie (Tejano)] C 3 – 10/3/1/1
6. Hardride (USA) [Colony Light – Lametta (Lomond)] G 3 – 11/4/2/0
7. Wonder Love (USA) [Wild Wonder – Love Spanish (Spanish Drums)] H 6 – 9/1/2/4
8. Boryeong Bulbit (KOR) [Revere – Windy Ruki (Wind and Wuthering)] G 4 – 11/5/1/2
9. Yongdu Baram (KOR) [Our Poetic Prince – Leave The Nest (Euclase)] G 4 – 12/5/2/1
10. Florida Native(USA) [Kissin Kris – Binndiana (Jose Binn)] H 4 – 11/3/3/1

Pick Me Up Finishes Last at Charles Town

Pick Me Up’s second race in the US went much the same way as his first at Charles Town, West Virginia last Friday evening. Racing on dirt, the 6 year old started brightly but was soon at the back of the field of 9 in the HBPA Governor’s Stakes over 9 furlongs. Hopes that his disappointing showing in his US debut at Delaware Park last month could be put down to running on turf for the first time were dashed as the change in surface made little difference to his performance which was described in the race summary as “finished early”. Pick Me Up will race on in the US before returning to Korea in December.

See the video of the race here. It does not make pleasant viewing for Korean racing fans. (Thanks to fpop for the video).