Choedae Gangja

Rafale Downed As Goliath Marine Wins Again At Busan

Highly rated 3-year-old Rafale slumped to defeat as trainer Peter Wolsley and jockey Jo Sung Gon cleaned-up at Busan on Friday.

While he was always going to be favourite, Rafale (Colors Flying) was sent off at impossibly short-odds for the 1900M class 2 handicap and while he looked well-placed entering the home straight, it was second-favourite Goliath Marine (Volponi) who sprinted away from the field to claim his 3rd win from his last 4 starts. Rafale, who was 2nd in last year’s Seoul Breeders’ Cup and was an easy winner when tried around two-turns for the first time in January, came home 4th.

Goliath Marine was the 4th winner of the day for Australian trainer Peter Wolsley, who returns to the tope of the trainer’s championship as a result. Earlier, he’d sent out Happy Hana (Biwa Shinseiki) to win race 5 and Choedae Gangja (Didyme) to win race 6 before his up and coming import Different Dimension (Into Mischief) landed a 3rd win in 3 career starts in race 10.

Lee Hee Cheon rode Choedae Gangja but the other three were all ridden by Jo Sung Gon and Jo would also get four winners on the day with a perfectly timed ride on Morning Hwiparam (Everydayissaturday) in race 8. Jo showed his quality in the saddle by bringing the gelding from last to first through a crowd of horses in the home straight, stealing victory on the line by the narrowest of noses.

Wolsley wasn’t the only foreign connection at Busan among the winners yesterday. Nozomu Tomizawa rode favourite Daejiui Jilju (Admire Don) to victory in race 3 while his fellow Japanese rider Masa Tanaka scored in race 7 on Triple Nine (Ecton Park). From the Kim Young Kwan stable, Triple Nine has now won three of his four starts to date.

Racing returns to Busan on Sunday when Success Story, Ghost Whisper, Cheonji Bulpae and Gumpo Sky all feature in the main handicap.

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Fujii Returns With A Winner While Wolsley Trains A Four-Timer

Joe Fujii marked his return to the saddle with a winner but it was Peter Wolsley who stole the show among the foreign ranks at Busan on Friday, sending out four winners on the day.

Joe Fujii was back with a winner today (KRA)

Joe Fujii was back with a winner today (KRA)

Fujii, returning after a five-month layoff, started well when guiding Wonderful Star to a creditable 3rd place in race 1 and was then 2nd on Sky Sun in race 4.

He had to wait until race 8 to find the winner’s circle though, riding favourite Vicar Gold to a comfortable 5-length victory.

By that time, Australian trainer Wolsley had already saddled two winners. Debutant Cheonji Park was impressive, making all to claim race 2 before Choedae Gangja triumphed with a similarly front-running victory in race 7.

Next up for Wolsley was Baksuchyeo, who in landing his 5th win in 8 starts, handed the highly-rated filly Top Admiral her first ever defeat in race 9. Cinderella Man completed the four-timer in race 10.

Feature race of the afternoon went to 8/1 chance Grand Teukgeup. This afternoon’s winners essentially assure Wolsley of 2nd place in the Trainers’ Championship behind the Kim Young Kwan stable. As for Fujii, despite missing almost half the season, he still lies in 7th in the Jockeys’ Championship.

Both Fujii and Wolsley will be back at Busan for more on Sunday.