Ecton Blade

Ecton Blade Enjoys Happy Busan Homecoming

Ecton Blade made his Busan homecoming a successful on Sunday afternoon as the Korean Derby winner ran out a four-length winner of the track’s feature handicap.

The last time he raced at home on the south-coast, Ecton Blade finished a close 2nd in the KRA Cup Mile, the first leg of the Triple Crown before heading to Seoul where he was an easy winner of the Derby. He couldn’t follow up in the final leg, the Minister’s Cup, but is already assured of Champion Three-Year-Old honours. And while Sunday’s seven-furlong race wasn’t against the most taxing of opposition, the Kim Young-kwan trained colt showed he has plenty of potential for further success.

Under Franco Da Silva, Ecton Blade was quickly away but soon found himself under pressure from Tapipoint and Banjiui Jewang. In the straight, however, he quickly shook them off to run out a comfortable winner to move on to a career total of 6 wins from 11 starts.

On Friday evening, things didn’t go quite so well for another of this year’s Classic winners. World Sun finished 3rd in the KRA Cup Mile and 5th in the Derby before winning the Minister’s Cup. He was sent off an even-money favourite for his return to Busan in the night’s feature class 2 handicap but came up short in 3rd place as Master Win dominated for an all the way victory over 2000M.

Master Win (Peace Rules) was racing at Class 2 for the first time following an eye-catching eleven-length score over 1800M at the end of June. Friday’s win was only the three-year-old colt’s fourth in eleven career starts but he’s a horse that looks to be getting better and better.

At Seoul, Sunday’s most valuable race was a special juvenile contest for graduates of the Jeju Breeze-Up Sale. Only two of the field had raced before and one of the newcomers was a hot favourite going into the race. That was Limitless Bid colt Gyoryong Unu but while he led into the straight, he failed to hold off the fast-finishing Strike Again colt Bal Roe Ja, who took home the big prize by just over a length at odds of 20/1.

On Saturday, Seoul’s 1400M track-record-holder Sanggam Mama (Peace Rules) roared back into top form in the class 1 sprint feature. Coming out of gate 11 he looped the entire field to race into a big early lead and never looked like being caught, ultimately coming home eight lengths in front long-shot Ace Runner, who in turn edged favourite Winner Gold into 3rd.

The victory was Sanggam Mama’s first since his four-race win streak, which included that track record, came to an end late last autumn and moved the six-year-old onto 9 wins from 28 starts. It also saw jockey Antonio Da Silva to a late treble on the day. The Brazilian rider repeated that feat on Sunday, kicking home another three winners early in the card.

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Seoul & Busan Sunday: Race-By-Race Preview (August 26)

This year’s Korean Derby winner Ecton Blade returns to his home-track of Busan this Sunday as the colt drops back in trip to contest the class 1 feature handicap over 1400M. It’s the highlight of a 6-race Sunday card at Busan while up in Seoul there are a further 11 races.

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Derby winner Ecton Blade & Franco Da Silva are in action at Busan on Sunday

It will be Ecton Blade’s first appearance at Busan since running a close 2nd to Divide Wind in the KRA Cup Mile, the first leg of the Triple Crown, in April. Last year’s champion juvenile then comfortably won the Derby in Seoul by a full-three lengths but only managed to finish in 3rd in the final leg of the series, the Minister’s Cup, also at Seoul in June. However, that 3rd was enough to assure himself the title of 2018 Champion Three-Year-Old.

While the winner of the Minister’s Cup, World Sun, was beaten on his own return to Busan on Friday evening, things should be different for Ecton Blade. With the rating limit capped at 100, Sunday’s race is not strong by class 1 standards and it is one he should be winning. Nevertheless, there are some useful operators among his ten rivals with Mupae, Miracle Line and Daeho Sidae the ones expected to provide the sternest opposition.

While a tilt at the international Korea Cup two weeks from now was considered for Ecton Blade, it was ultimately decided to keep him in Busan and drop him down to the trip he last ran at when winning the Breeders’ Cup – Korea’s top juvenile race – last year. Franco Da Silva, who rode him in the Derby, partners him once again.

Up at Seoul the most valuable race of the day is a six-furlongs test exclusively for juvenile graduates of the Jeju Breeze-up Sales. A field of eight will go to post and there is set to be a hot favourite in the shape of first-time starter Gyoryong Unu. The Limitless Bid colt trialed up impressively and is expected to have too much for a field which contains just two horses with prior racing experience.

Here is the fill race-by-race preview, beginning with Seoul, scroll down for Busan:

Race 1: Class 6 (1200M) Allowance / KRW 24 Million

(1) MAPAEBONG beat two of these on his way to 2nd place at this distance on July 29th and he looks the most likely to make the breakthrough here. (5) HARD PRINCESS also beat some of her rivals here when recording a much-improved 3rd place four weeks ago. That was her thirteenth career start and he best-finish to date and shoe can maintain that momentum here. (7) RAON STELLA ran a creditable race on debut the same day and should improve for the experience. Similarly (4) JJANGDAE made his racecourse debut running 4th behind Mapaebong and can also have come on for it. (9) DALLYEORA RAON has raced four times so far with two 3rd places to his name and shouldn’t be too far away again.

Selections (1) Mapaebong (5) Hard Princess (9) Dallyeora Raon (7) Raon Stella
Next Best 4, 12
Fast Start 3, 4, 8

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

This race is restricted to maiden fillies and (4) ATHENA V, 2nd on debut at this distance on July 21st is favoured to prevail. She was well-back behind a good winner that day but should have too much here. (12) SOKBO ONGJU and (1) DANGDAE SONYEO came home 2nd and 4th respectively when they raced at the distance on July 22nd. That was the latter’s debut and she may well improve. (6) HALLA DAERO and (10) SUN QUEEN both have 2nd place finishes to their names and can be competitive while among the four first-time starters, (5) SONGAM BARBIE catches the eye. She qualified when winning a trial back in March but didn’t make it to a race. She then re-qualified in good fashion at the end of July and can be considered first-up.

Selections (4) Athena V (1) Dangdae Sonyeo (12) Sokbo Ongju (5) Songam Barbie
Next Best 6, 10, 3
Fast Start 1, 5, 6, 8

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

A very competitive race which sees three horses up in class after recording their maiden wins last time out. In the case of (4) RAON SIRIUS, that win was all the way back in April. However, he looked very good when winning a trial two weeks ago and looks to have a very good chance first-up. He’ll be on pace early alongside (1) DAESEUNG AGAIN, and all-the-way winner at this distance on his third career start on July 14th and who also should go close. The final one up in class, (11) THUNDER MONEY, looks to have a bit more to find but shouldn’t be completely ruled out. Of those with experience at this level, (2) HI EUREKA looks the pick. He’s finished 3rd in three out of his last four starts and with Antonio Da Silva up today, could get it right, while (5) NEUNGRYEOK SIDAE too has gone close. (6) ROAN PRO SENSE didn’t go especially well at 1300M on what was his first try at this class last month but may go better dropped back to the minimum today.

Selections (4) Raon Sirius (2) Hi Eureka (1) Daeseung Again (5) Neungryeok Sidae
Next Best 6, 8, 11
Fast Start 1, 4, 6, 8

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

(3) TRIPLE HAPPY has run 3rd on both his latest starts and last time was slightly unlucky in a desperately close three-way finish over 1200M. He steps up marginally in trip today and can come from just off the early pace to make a strong challenge. (6) HAENGBOK STAR disappointed when favourite last time beaten by (8) REBECCA, among others. He should at least overturn that form today and can be given another chance. (10) ROYAL PRINCE enters having been 2nd at class and distance on July 22nd and can look to at least match that today. (2) TAURUS is up in class after getting his maiden win on his second start four weeks ago and should be competitive. (1) JI SEONI is better than her latest form suggests and is a potential improver.

Selections (3) Triple Happy (10) Royal Prince (6) Haengbok Star (2) Taurus
Next Best 1, 4
Fast Start 6, 7, 8

Race 5: Class 4 (1300M) Handicap / KRW 60 Million

(11) JANGSAN WILD returned to winning ways at class and distance on July 7th, scoring in a decent race by half a length. He carries a bit more weight today but should be prominent throughout and is favoured to win again. (10) SOMETHING MYSTERY ran a close 2nd on his first try at this level four weeks ago. He’s never run worse than 5th in seven outings to date and should be very much in the frame here. (1) CUPID DATE similarly finished 3rd on his own first attempt at this level on the same day at 1400M and looks nicely in here. (5) BLACK MUSIC is already a class and distance winner and he only managed 5th last start under the same weight he carries today, he can aim for a place as can (8) DREAM INDY, who drops back in trip after recent assignments over 1700M.

Selections (11) Jangsan Wild (10) Something Mystery (1) Cupid Date (5) Black Music
Next Best 8
Fast Start 5, 7, 8, 11, 12

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

(8) BEST YEJI has finished 3rd in each of her last three races, two of them at 1700M and then most recently at 1300M, beating a couple of others who go here in the process. 3rd should be a minimum target today and the Friesian Fire filly can come from just behind the early lead to put in a challenge late on. (4) CRAZY FACTOR has been 3rd on both his starts so far and steps up in trip for the first time. He’ll be on pace early and could be (more…)

Ecton Blade & Franco Da Silva Win The 2018 Korean Derby

Ecton Blade (Ecton Park) won the 2018 Korean Derby at Seoul Racecourse Park on Sunday afternoon.

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Pics by Ross Holburt

How they went:

1.  Ecton Blade – Settled prominently behind Hiddden Champ and had things his own way. Once he struck the front he never looked like being beaten

2. Mask – Really good performance, finishing well down the outside for a fine 2nd. He’ll be a danger in the Minister’s Cup too.

3. Choinma – Made for two Seoul horses in the top three. Raced in midfield and kept to the rail in the straight holding off Divide Wind by a neck.

4. Divide Wind – Began poorly and never looked settled. Clearly considered the second string from his stable despite his KRA Cup Mile win. Jockey – a very good jockey – slightly fortunate to only get a three-day suspension for the incident which saw World Sun cut-off in the home straight.

5. World Sun – Settled at the back as expected but just as in the KRA Cup Mile got a bad trip. Had the door slammed shut by Divide Wind as he was trying to find a run in the home straight. Would never have got to the winner though.

6. Hiddden Champ – Looked very coltish in the parade ring and sweated up badly on the way to the gate. Went to the lead as expected but never looked truly settled and faded when put under pressure.

7. Fire Wind – Close to the pace in the early part of the race but found the competition too stiff at the business end of the race. All being well she should be back for the Oaks.

8. Clean Up Teukgeup – Made little impression throughout.

9. Icheon Ssal – Last all the way around until passing a tiring Let’s Yeongcheon in the closing stages.

10. Let’s Yeongcheon – Tried to keep up early but was under pressure early on and weakened to last before the final furlong.

Korean Derby Day 2018: Race-By-Race Preview (May 13)

It’s the 2nd leg of the 2018 Korean Triple Crown as 10 horses line up for the 21st running of the Korean Derby at Seoul Racecourse on Sunday afternoon. And Divide Wind will join his stablemate Ecton Blade, who he beat by a length to capture the first jewel in the crown, the KRA Cup Mile, as favourite. The big race is the highlight of an 11-race card at Seoul from 10:45 to 18:00 which also includes the ARF Commemorative Race, to mark the opening of the 37th Asian Racing Conference. There are also 6 races at Busan from 12:40 to 17:05.

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Divide Wind won the KRA Cup Mile. Can he add the 2nd leg of the 2018 Triple Crown? (Pic: Ross Holburt)

Divide Wind and Ecton Blade have been joined on the trip to Seoul by World Sun and Hiddden Champ. World Sun was a fast finishing 3rd in the Cup Mile and could challenge the two favourites here. As for Seoul, the challenge is led by Mask, who also ran well in the Mile for 4th and an upset is not impossible. Here is the race-by-race preview of all 17 Derby Day races at both Seoul & Busan with horse-by-horse comments for the ARF and Derby races?

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

(1) SEUNGRI PLUS will be strong favourite to score here, having been getting progressively closer across his latest outings. He was 2nd to a good winner at this distance last time on April 7th and should have too much today. (4) MAIN RACER has shown some ability across three starts so far and can build on the 5th he managed last time while (5) RAON OPTIMUS enters after back to back 4th place finishes and should be looking to at least match here. (6) BARAM KING and (8) MAJJABEUN SON are others who can be considered.

Selections (1) Seungri Plus (6) Baram King (4) Main Racer (8) Majjabeun Son
Next Best 5, 3
Fast Start 1, 4, 9

Seoul Race 2: Class 6 (1200M) Allowance / KRW 24 Million

(7) BLACK SPIRIT was an improved 3rd at 1300M on her last start at the beginning of March and returns here after a couple of months off with solid claims. She can come from just off the pace and finish strongly. (8) SANTOS showed prominently before weakening over 1300M two weeks ago. He drops back slightly in trip here and may benefit. (2) CLEAN FLOWER showed some signs of life with 5th place at 1300M last time and gets Manoel Nunes on board today. (6) ARGO UNIQUE and (11) DONGBANG JIJU are others with potential to improve on recent outings.

Selections (7) Black Spirit (8) Santos (2) Clean Flower (11) Dongbang Jiju
Next Best 6, 1
Fast Start 8, 9, 10, 11

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

(8) MACHA BUCHA ran a close 2nd at class and distance on April 7th having been prominent throughout and leading briefly close to home. He can go one better this time. (2) BOLD NINER comes in following back to back 4th place finishes at this distance and at 1200M and surely comes close again while (12) LEAD UP can overcome the widest draw to get close to the pace early and can match the 3rd she managed last tie. (4) EVER A ONE beat Macha Bucha at the distance two starts ago and while he didn’t go well at 1300M on reappearance last month, can be given another chance today. (9) STIRLING returns to action after a three-month absence and can be considered too.

Selections (8) Macha Bucha (2) Bold Niner (4) Ever A One (12) Lead Up
Next Best 9, 7, 1
Fast Start 8, 9, 12

Seoul Race 4: Class 5 (1200M) Handicap / KRW 40 Million

(8) L CAR romped home to easily win his second start on April 14th. It was at 1000M, so he is up in both class and distance today, but he could well have enough to prevail again. (3) EAGLE SKY could be the one to beat though. He improved significantly last start on April 15th when ridden by Johan Victoire for the first time, just beaten half a length at this distance and looks set to go well here. (7) EUMAK DAEJANG beat a couple of these on his way to 3rd at 1300M on April 14th and should have the beating of plenty once more. One of those behind him that day was (1) REBECCA and the slight drop in trip may benefit her today. (9) SPECIAL LIGHT ran 4th in a solid race at 1300M last month and is another to consider. He usually comes from well off the pace so will need things to set up just right for him. (4) CHEON MONG is up in class after a somewhat unexpected win at 1300M and while he perhaps has a bit more to find, shouldn’t be ruled out completely.

Selections (3) Eagle Sky (8) L Car (9) Special Light (1) Rebecca
Next Best 4, 7
Fast Start 1, 4, 7

Busan Race 1: Class 5 (1200M) Handicap / KRW 40 Million

(7) HOTHAE is up in class following a convincing win over this distance on April 13th. He made all that day and could well do so again here. It won’t be easy. (3) HANGIL too steps up following her maiden win which came at the fourth time of asking. Her triumph was over 1000M, so she faces an increase in distance as well but should be able to cope with it. (5) GEUJIKOJI had a hard time at a mile last time but should be more comfortable dropped back today. (1) BLUE DANCER defied her odds to run a good 2nd at class and distance three weeks ago and will not more respect here. (9) SWEET MEMORY steps up in trip after a 3rd and a 4th behind some useful ones in her latest two and can come under consideration.

Selections (7) Hothae (3) Hangil (9) Sweet Memory (1) Blue Dancer
Next Best 5, 4
Fast Start 1, 3, 7, 9

Seoul Race 5: Class 4 (1400M) Handicap / KRW 60 Million

(1) JANGSAN WILD has won two from three so far and is up in both class and distance today. He had to work for his win last time but looks to have scope for more improvement and he’s the one they’ll need to beat today. He had to battle last time though and if the additional furlong is a concern then (6) DAESEUNG BIBEOB is the one to turn to. He drops back in trip after some good efforts around two turns and will surely run on strongly. (7) TEUKBYEOL STAR still somehow remains a maiden. She’s a good filly and rarely misses the money but can’t quite make the breakthrough. That will probably be the case again, but she’ll be firmly in the placing hunt. (5) FINE CHAMP and (10) SPEED CHEONGNYONG, the latter up in class, both enter in good form and should also be involved.

Selections (1) Jangsan Wild (6) Daeseung Bibeob (7) Teukbyeol Star (10) Speed Cheongnyong
Next Best 5, 4
Fast Start 1, 2, 9

Busan Race 2:  Class 4 (1000M) Handicap / KRW 60 Million

(9) MAKGANG BOLT has won his latest two in decent fashion, his latest at this class. He’s a front-runner and with an apprentice keeping his carried weight nice and low, he has every chance of making it three in a row. (2) YUKRYONGI ran poorly when favourite last time out four weeks ago but had been showing enough prior to that to suggest he’s worth another chance today and he should be a threat. (11) QUEEN THE QUEEN is up in class following back to back runner-up finishes, both at this distance. She’s never been worse than 3rd and despite the step up in level, she can maintain that record today. (10) CHARTERED DREAM came home 2nd and 5th respectively when they raced each other at (more…)

Divide Wind Roars In To Win KRA Cup Mile

If there is a Korean Triple Crown winner in 2018, then his name is Divide Wind. The Menifee colt beat out stablemate and favourite Ecton Blade to win the first jewel, the KRA Cup Mile at Busan on Sunday afternoon.

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Divide Wind wins the KRA Cup Mile (Pic: Ross Holburt)

Divide Wind entered the race having won his latest three with ease, including the Gyeongnam Shinmun Cup, a trial for this race, a month ago. In the parade ring and on the way to the gate he was the clear standout of the field, ahead of the champion juvenile Ecton Blade, who started to sweat up on what was a chilly Spring afternoon.

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Divide Wind beats Ecton Blade in the Cup Mile (Pic: Ross Holburt)

After the start was delayed to allow Gaon Champ to be backed out of the stalls and checked over, it was Gaon Champ himself who took command early along with previously unbeaten filly Yeongcheon Derby. Their challenges would fade though as Ecton Blade and Divide Wind came into contention at the top of the stretch.

With World Sun also c losing at speed, Divide Wind ended up too strong for Ecton Blade and took the win by three-quarters of a length on the line. Yeongcheon Derby was 3rd while Mask was Seoul’s best finisher in 4th.

It’s yet another big race 1st and 2nd for trainer Kim Young Kwan.

KRA Cup Mile (KOR G2) – Busan Racecourse – 1600M – Sunday April 8, 2018

1. Divide Wind (KOR) [Menifee – Grand Pass (Grand Slam)] – You Hyun Myung – 4.2, 1.3
2. Ecton Blade (KOR) [Ecton Park – Vyng Ty Grr (Regal Intention)] – Lee Hyo Sik – 1.2
3. World Sun (KOR) [Officer – Dancing Desire (Mr. Greeley)] – Lim Sung Sil – 1.8
Distances: 0.75 lengths / 0.75 lengths
Also Ran: 4. Mask 5. Yeongcheon Derby 6. Gaon Champ 7. Mone Flying 8. Yeonggwanguiwinner 9. Yeonggwangui Champ

The 21st Korean Derby, the 2nd leg of the Triple Crown, will be run at Seoul Racecourse on Sunday May 13th as the curtain-raiser to the Asian Racing Conference, which kicks off in Seoul the following day.

Weekend Round-Up: Ecton Blade & Triple Crown Trail, Rainha, Moonhak Chief

Three-year-olds were the standout performers in Korea last weekend with some of the best of the crop turning in eye-catching performances at both Seoul & Busan.

Ecton Blade won the Breeders’ Cup race at Seoul in December and so headed into the New Year as the leading Triple Crown contender. 2nd placegetter in that race and Seoul’s top juvenile of last year Choinma could only manage another 2nd place on his own seasonal debut two weeks ago but Ecton Blade made no mistake at Busan on Sunday.  He’s already won over 1600M before and went into Sunday’s race 3, at the KRA Cup Mile distance as the prohibitive favourite, fully justifying it by sauntering to an eight-length win. Stiffer tests await.

Ecton Blade’s win leaves the top sixteen three-year-olds (sixteen being the maximum field-size) with Triple Crown eligibility currently looking like this:

1. Ecton Blade [Ecton Park]
2= Sinui Myeongryeong (filly) [Hansen]
2= Choinma [Menifee]
4. Yeonghui Sidae (filly) [Hansen]
5. Captain Force [Peace Rules]
6. Divide Wind [Menifee]
7. Magic Ten (filly) [Rock Hard Ten]
8. Hoeng Un Gol [Forest Camp]
9. Meni Bada [Menifee]
10. World Sun [Officer]
11. King Jjang [Simon Pure]
12= Green K (filly) [Chapel Royal]
12= Global Line [Rock Hard Ten]
12= Hae Hu [Peace Rules]
12= Bugyeong Daebak (filly) [Forest Camp]
12= Blue Flag (filly) [Menifee]

Ecton Blade’s trainer Kim Young Kwan has an embarassment of riches that has seen 20 of his 40 runners so far in 2018 win. Even my elementary maths can calculate that’s a scarcely believable 50% strike rate and 70% of his runners have finished in the Quinella. Perhaps the richest of all the talents could be Rainha.

The exiting filly stepped up to a mile for what was her third career start and Rainha maintained her 100% record in a dismissively easy manner, cruising around on the bridle for a four-length win. Having been imported in-utero, she’s not on the Classic trail but nevertheless looks a very promising talent.

Rainha is owned by Shunsuke Yoshida and her dam is Allwise (Mr. Greeley) who had three foals in Japan before being relocated to Nokwon Farm on Jeju Island in late 2014 while in foal to Gold Allure. That resulting foal was Rainha. In the meantime, her filly by Heart’s Cry, born a year earlier and called Historia, last November won the TVK Sho at Tokyo Racecourse and now boasts a record of three wins from nine starts in the JRA.

Also in the non-eligible three-year-old ranks is Moonhak Chief. The US import by Pioneerof The Nile stepped up to class 2 and also to 1800M for the first time at Seoul on Sunday. And mightilu impressive he was too,  being ridden patiently by Lim Gi Won early on beofre stikign the front with just over a furlong to go and running on to win by a comfortable two lengths. He’s now won five of his seven outings.

In other news, Doraonpogyeongseon (Kantharos) went down by a nose in Busan’s Sunday sprint feature. Under an apprentice jockey so as he wouldn’t have to carry 60kg, the third-placegetter in the Korea Sprint couldn’t quite get up over 1200M, beaten a nose by Ever In Ever (Sharp Humor)/

Ecton Blade Claims Top Juvenile Crown

Two years ago, Power Blade won the Breeders’ Cup to become champion juvenile of his crop. Seven months later he was a Korean Triple Crown winner. On Sunday at Seoul Racecourse, the same connections sent out Ecton Blade and he too returned as the top two-year-old of his generation.

Ecton Blade, the latest product of the Kim Young Kwan training machine, was sent off as third-favourite for the 1400M Breeders’ Cup. Market leaders were World Sun and Choinma who had each won both their big prep races at Busan and Seoul respectively, Ecton Blade finishing a cool four-lengths adrift of World Sun in the Gimhae Mayor’s Cup at the end of October.

World Sun behaved badly on the way to the gate and proved a tough ride in the race itself too. He found himself in a good position coming off the turn but never managed to make it into top gear ultimately coming home in 5th. Choinma ran better though and ultimately got the closest to Ecton Blade as a fast finishing 2nd place.

Having already won over a mile, the distance was never going to be an issue for Ecton Blade and jockey Ham Wan Sik was happy to sit 3rd in the early stages as Global Line and Sinui Myeongryeong set the pace. He took over at the top f the stretch and never looked like being caught. Choinma was solid in 2nd while Sinui Myeongryeong stuck on for a very good 3rd to finish the best of the three fillies in the contest.

Breeders’ Cup (KOR G2) – Seoul Racecourse – 1400M – December 3, 2017

1. Ecton Blade (KOR) [Ecton Park – Vying Ty Grr (Regal Intention)] – Ham Wan Sik – 8.5, 2.0
2. Choinma (KOR) [Menifee – Kkummaeul (Curia Regis)] – Choi Bum Hyun – 1.4
3. Sinui Myeongryeong  (KOR) (Hansen – Strawberry Rose (Dr Fong)] – 3.9
Distances: 1.5 lengths / 1.25 lengths
Also Ran: 4. King Jjang 5. World Sun 6. Gyeongjuui Durebak 7. Divide Wind 8. Global Line 9. Wonderful Jackpot 10. Icheon Ssal 11. Sin Stealth 12. Okay Queen

Ecton Blade has now won three out of five starts. Owned by Power Blade owner Kim Hyung Ran, he’s trained by Kim Young Kwan. It’s early days but this two-year-old crop certainly looks stronger and deeper than the one a year ago so we will hopefully be set for an exciting Triple Crown season in 2018.

In other races, Tohamsan (Kwaedo Nanma) returned to winning ways in Busan’s feature. The Korea Sprint also-ran was giving his rivals plenty of weight in the 1200M handicap but cruised to an easy victory, his first since May.