The MBC network’s “Gayo Daejun” – the annual K-Pop marathon that traditionally sees in the New Year, marked 2014 being the Year of the Horse with a special performance at Seoul Racecourse shown just before midnight last night.
CN Blue at Seoul Racecourse
The segment, which was pre-recorded, featured “pop rock” group CNBLUE performing under the floodlights on the winning line at a deserted track.
The 5-hour long live broadcast Gayo Daejun (or “Song Festival”) has been airing in some form on New Year’s Eve since the mid 1960’s.
The KRA had way too much time on its hands last month:
To be fair, it is a play on words – “Ma” is used in this case as “horse” – the Korean word for horse racing is “gyong-ma”.
Do some work
The KRA is sticking with Girl Groups for its K-Pop fix this year – they know their market well. Sistar are the biggest name and will be performing a “mini-concert” (i.e. 3 songs) at Seoul Racecourse on Korean Derby Day on May 19.
A K-Pop girl group will be at Seoul Racecourse every Sunday until November
Here is a full list of who is appearing when. Some are well-known, others…less so (final schedule may change and will be confirmed at the beginning of each month:
May 12: Goddess
May 19: Sistar
May 26: Tiny G
June 2: Heart Rabbit Girls
June 9: Aurora
June 16: Purplay
June 23: Kim So Jung
June 30: SPICA
July 7: Peernine
July 14: Sunny Days
July 21: Fresh
July 28: T Angel
August 4: Fiesta
August 11: Brave Girls
August 18: TBC
August 25: AB
September 1: TBC
September 8: Wind Hold Venus
September 15: Gangkiz
September 29: Swincle
October 6: Stellar
October 13: Two X
October 20: Tahiti
October 27: Jewelry
November 3: T Angel
November 10: Ladies’ Code
Seoul Race Park’s novelty race on Owners’ Cup day between an athlete, a racehorse and an off-road Sports buggy, ended in an unexpected win for the human.
Gyeongbuk University student Lee Jae Ha on his way to beating a horse and a car at Seoul Race Park on Sunday.
Gyongbuk University student Lee Jae Ha, who started the handicap race at the furlong pole, could have had his feet up with a big cigar by the time the slow starting buggy crossed the line in second, trailing a sandstorm in its wake, with the horse back in third. Lee, running on a length of matting that was stretched for 200 metres over the deep sand of the home straight, finished the race in 25.43 seconds.
The buggy completed its 450 metres in 26.32 seconds while the racehorse, an 8-year-old mare called Blessed (The Groom Is Red) took 28.43 seconds to complete 400 metres having been very slow out of the gate. Jockey Lee Gi Hweoi rode the mare who was actually retired from racing in 2010 and has been retrained as a recreational horse so perhaps wasn’t in peak race condition.
Throughout the day, punters had been able to “vote” on which they thought would win with all those correctly picking the human (significantly fewer than those who went for the other two options) being entered into a prize draw.
The event was part of the KRA’s push to get more people into the track and coincided with a special “Beginners and Couples Zone” opening on the first floor of the grandstand. More on that shortly.
Sunday sees the Seoul Owners’ Association Trophy take centre stage with current hottest property in Korean racing Feel So Good likely to make his Stakes racing debut.
Man Vs Horse Vs Machine at Seoul
On the same afternoon, however, the KRA has decided to host a slightly different contest in the shape of a horse vs car vs runner race.
The horse will be an 8-year old mare called Blessed (The Groom Is Red), who won 2 of her 30 starts before being retired and retrained as a riding horse in 2010. She will start at the 2 furlong pole along with a “Premium SUV”. Given a furlong’s head-start will be 22-year-old athlete Lee Jae Ha of Gyeongbuk University.
The KRA isn’t offering betting on the event but instead is inviting people to “vote” on its website for who they think will win with all successful votes being entered into a prize draw (which sounds suspiciously similar to the way legal “gambling” on Chinese horse races happens). With the stunt being given some coverage in local media and being held on a weekend where the cherry blossoms are likely to be out around the track, the KRA hopes to get more casual racegoers along.