Cheonun Rains In Owners’ Cup

17/1 outsider Cheonun sprinted past the favourites to land victory in an exciting renewal of the Owners’ Trophy at a rain-lashed Seoul Race Park this afternoon.

Cheonun and Jang Chu Yeol return after success in the Owners' Cup

With almost the whole field still in contention with a furlong to run, it was the 5-year old mare, 2nd in the Korean Oaks in 2010, who swooped wide and late to get the better of pre-race favourite Magnifique (Menifee) and second-favourite Real Victor (Biwa Shinseiki).

It was an 8th career victory for Cheonun (Ft. Stockton) and her third big race triumph, following wins in the 2010 Sports Seoul Cup and 2011 NACF Chairman’s race. This was, however, the first time she had beaten male horses in a Stakes race. She’s only been out of the money once in her 22 outings.

For jockey Jang Chu Yeol, less than two years into his professional riding career, it was a first Stakes victory. The 23-year-old is thought of as one of the best young riding talents in the country and last autumn rode two winners in the United States.

SROA Trophy (KOR.G3) – Seoul Race Park – 1400M – April 22, 2012

1. Cheonun (KOR) [Ft.Stockton-Restless Patricia (Born Restless)] – Jang Chu Yeol – 17.3, 3.5
2. Magnifique (KOR) [Menifee-Miss Beautiful (Miswaki)] – Kim Ok Sung – 1.4
3. Real Victor (KOR) [Biwa Shinseiki-Hyunmo (Real Quiet)] – Jo In Kwen – 1.8

Distances: 0.5 lengths/1.75 lengths – 14 ran

If Cheonun can keep today’s form up, she may even find herself invited to the Grand Prix Stakes at the end of the season. After the Owners’ Trophy was done, last year’s Grand Prix winner, Tough Win (Yonaguska) put in his second appearance of the season. And despite carrying 63.5Kg, it was as routine as his first.

This time, jockey Cho Kyoung Ho opted to drop Tough Win right to the back of the field and, instead of coming round the outside, went right through the middle in the home straight.

Although for a very short time it looked like he may have trouble getting through, his victory was as comfortable as ever and the inevitable rematch between him and Smarty Moonhak is looking ever more enticing.

A rain-lashed Tough Win saunters to victory

In contrast to Seoul, it was a glorious spring day at Busan. Double President’s Cup Dangdae Bulpae (Biwa Shinseiki) recordd a routine win in the afternoon’s feature.

Of the foreign jockeys at Busan, Japanese riders Yukio Abe and Narazaki Kosuke were both on target, but South African Gerrit Schlechter was unable to follow-up on the double he rode on Friday, drawing a blank from 4 rides.

Weekend Preview

Lion Santa, Cheonun Head Cards

It’s been another chilly week in what has been the coldest winter anyone in Korea can remember, however, just like last week, temperatures look set to rise up to around the freezing point this weekend meaning there is no better place to spend it than at the racetrack!

It's set for another cold and bright weekend at Seoul

At Busan on Friday, Lion Santa (Lion Heart) is the main attraction. The four-year old, whose connections shunned the Grand Prix Stakes only to see him beaten in what should have been a routine handicap and in the process, lose his unbeaten record on his tenth start. However, he will be favoured to get back to winning ways in the mile-long feature race.

Sunday’s big race on the South Coast is headed by Tamna Ace (Thunder Gulch), who has nine wins from his thirteen career starts. Also on show on Sunday is filly Geumdda (Officer) who, like Lion Santa, shockingly lost her unbeaten record last time out. She’s up against Peter Wolsley’s filly Perfect Jilju (Paradise Creek) who herself has four wins from her last five starts.

Up at Seoul it’s a bit of a low-key weekend but it still should be a fascinating two days of racing. The capital’s feature race is on Saturday as Nonghyup Stakes winner Cheonun (Ft. Stockton) heads a full-field of fourteen going over 1900 metres.

On the Triple Crown trail there are a few promising three-year olds to look out for. At Seoul Viva Cat (Creek Cat) goes in race 9 on Sunday, looking for his fifth win from six starts while down at Busan Good Time (Yehudi) and Predict (The Groom Is Red) both go in race 9 on Friday.

Friday February 10

Busan Race Park: 11 races from 11:30 to 18:00
Jeju Race Park: 9 races from 13:30 to 17:30

Saturday February 11

Seoul Race Park: 12 races from 11:00 to 17:20
Jeju Race Park: 9 races from 12:20 to 17:20

Sunday February 12

Seoul Race Park: 11 races from 11:10 to 17:40
Busan Race Park: 8 races from 11:50 to 16:40

Weekend Preview – 2012 Opening Days at Seoul & Jeju

New Year’s Commemorative Stakes Headlines Opening Day In Capital

The 2012 fixture list is out and, while Busan remains dark for another week, racing gets underway this weekend at Seoul and Jeju.

Happyville - and Happy New Year as 2012 racing gets underway at Seoul this weekend

As is traditional, opening day at Seoul on Saturday is headlined by the Herald Business New Year’s Commemorative Stakes.

The 1800 metre test brings together a number of horses who didn’t quite fulfil their potential as three-year-olds, giving them the opportunity to start off the year with a Stakes victory.

Last year’s winner, Andy’s Runner went on to be a solid competitor at class 1 level. 2011 Sports Seoul Stakes winner Seungniuihamseong and in-form Palgigun and Summit Runner are among a full field of fourteen.

Here’s a full list of runners and riders (Name (Sire) Age, Sex (Starts/1st/2nd/3rd) – Jockey):

Herald Business New Year’s Stakes – Seoul Race Park – 1800M – Jan 8, 2012, 16:15

1. Seoul Jeongsang (KOR) (Capital Spending) 4 G (13/4/1/5) – Ham Wan Sik
2. Palgigun (KOR) (Commendable) 4 C (12/5/2/1) – Jung Pyeong Soo
3. Forest Wind (KOR) (Capital Spending) 5 H (18/4/1/3) – Moon Jung Kyun
4. Darling Vision (KOR) (Perfect Champion) 4 F (13/4/3/2) – Cho Kyoung Ho
5. Storm Troop (KOR) (Concept Win) 5 G (20/5/1/0) – Kim Dong Chul
6. Manjeomhwanhui (KOR) (Yehudi) 5 M (22/5/2/3) – Seo Seung Un
7. Fly Energy (KOR) (Dice Dancer) 4 F (12/3/1/2) – Oh Kyoung Hoan
8. Beongaegangho (KOR) (Vicar) 4 C (15/4/5/1) – Choi Bum Hyun
9. Bon Rising (KOR) (Volponi) 5 H (24/2/5/2) – Lee Gang Seo
10. Seungniuihamseong (KOR) (Vicar) 4 F (11/4/2/0) – Kim Ok Sung
11. Summit Runner (KOR) (Capital Spending) 4 C (11/3/5/1) – Jang Chu Yeol
12. Prime Galloper (KOR) (Strodes Creek) 4 C (13/4/4/1) – Toshihiko Inoue
13. King Fighting (KOR) (Concept Win) 4 C (14/3/3/0) – Jo In Kwen
14. Kakamega (KOR) (Gold Money) 4 C (16/4/4/2) – Moon Se Young

Saturday also sees a big class 1 handicap involving double Stakes winner Kkakjaengi as well as promisng newcomers to the top-tier of racing Sing Sing Cat and Ppoppai . Jumong , who is making a quick return to the track after a disappointing run in the Grand Prix, also goes.

Sunday’s big handicap will be headed by Nonghyup Stakes winner Cheonun as well as the afore-mentioned Andy’s Runner. Singgeureounachim was the underachiever of the Triple Crown trail last year and he will have an early opportunity to get his four-year old career off to a good start.

With Busan not running until next week, Seoul’s program is amended to 11 races on Saturday and 12 on Sunday – the opposite to what will be its regular program in 2012. Here’s what’s happening when and where this weekend:

Friday January 6

Jeju Race Park: 10 races from 12:30 to 17:00

Saturday January 7

Seoul Race Park: 11 races from 11:10 to 17:30
Jeju Race Park: 9 races from 12:40 to 17:25

Sunday January 8

Seoul Race Park: 12 races from 11:10 to 17:30