Indian King

Busan Friday: Race-By-Race Preview (June 22)

The weekend’s racing kicks off at Busan on Friday with a 9-race card from 11:30 to 18:00 and last year’s KRA Cup Mile winner Indian King finally returns to action for the first time since running 2nd in the final leg of last year’s Triple Crown, all the way back last July.

Indian King

Indian King suffered a suspensory ligament injury but is finally back to take his place in what is the Friday feature, a competitive class 2 handicap over 1400M. Earlier in the card, Yeonggwanguicheon, half-brother to last week’s Minister’s Cup winner World Sun makes his racecourse debut in race 2 while Great Rock will be expected to get back to winning ways in race 7. Here are the previews:

Race 1: Class 6 (1000M) Allowance / KRW 40 Million

A maiden for three-year-olds only kicks things off and (8) MISS PERFECT, 4th on debut over 1300M last month having led until close to home, drops back in trip today and is strongly favoured to score. (4) MUCHO was an improved 3rd last start three weeks ago and looks to be the main danger although (5) TAMNA MENTOR and (7) YEONGGWANGUI STAR look to have the potential to improve. There are three first-time starters here and among them, (3) OFFICE TAP was the only one who showed enough in trials to suggest he may warrant some support first-up.

Selections (8) Miss Perfect (4) Mucho (5) Tamna Mentor (7) Yeonggwangui Star
Next Best 3, 1
Fast Start 5, 8

Race 2: Class 6 (1000M) Allowance / KRW 75 Million

Eleven unraced two-year-olds make their debuts here chasing a valuable prize of almost $40,000 for the winner. Last Sunday, jockey Choi Si Dae partnered World Sun to win the Minister’s Cup, the final race in the Korea Triple Crown series. Back to Busan today, he rides World Sun’s half-brother (6) YEONGGWANGUICHEON. He’s not without a chance either having been one of the more impressive ones in trials and is likely to be on pace from the start. A couple of others are slightly more favoured though. (8) SUNDAY GLORY won his trial beating a couple of these in the process while (7) GIMABUDAEJANG also looked good across a pair of heats in April and May and will be backed to go well first up. Others who look to already have a bit of promise include (2) POWER WINDY and (9) BIG GAMBLER, who trialled up together looking competent enough two weeks ago.

Selections (8) Sunday Glory (7) Gimabudaejang (6) Yeonggwanguicheon (2) Power Windy
Next Best 9, 11, 4
Fast Start 2, 6

Race 3: Class 6 (1200M) Allowance / KRW 24 Million

Three of these stand out. (11) EAST WIND improved to 3rd over 1300M on what was her second start a month ago. She hasn’t shown all that in the way of speed so far, but this isn’t a strong race and a little bit more improvement today could see her home in front. (6) NOPIGOM DODASHA ran three times last year before being absent for eleven months. She returned to racing with a solid 3rd place over 1000M on May 25th and can have come on for that run. She looks set to lead here and could win. (7) CHEONHAUI KKUM has a best of 3rd over ten starts so far but has been showing some encouraging signs in his latest two and can get close. (2) P.K. NINE was well supported last time but didn’t get the greatest of trips on his way to a disappointing 8th place. He can improve today while (3) BAEKDU QUEEN is another who can potentially be involved.

Selections (6) Nopigom Dodasha (11) East Wind (7) Cheonhaui Kkum (2) P.K. Nine
Next Best 3, 5
Fast Start 6, 7, 9, 11

Race 4: Class 6 (1300M) Allowance / KRW 24 Million

Both (4) PERFECT ACE and (5) BLACK ARROW came home in 4th place on their respective debuts on May 25th. The latter’s was at 1200M compared with 1000M for the former but both finished off well and both look set to be competitive here. (9) ROYAL TREE was sent off an odds-on favourite at this distance last month but just got pipped to the line having briefly led close to home and the Thomas Gillespie trainee looks well worth another chance here. (2) INTERCEPTOR returned from five months off to run 5th of 11 at 1200M to weeks ago. He has acquitted himself reasonably well at this distance in the past and should be in the placing frame at least here. Peter Wolsley’s (7) GAMDONGUI SUNGAN comes in off back to back 4th place finishes, both at this distance and could improve today.

Selections (9) Royal Tree (5) Black Arrow (4) Perfect Ace (7) Gamdongui Sungan
Next Best 2, 1, 8
Fast Start 4, 5, 8

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

(3) DRAGON NINE was an eye-catching seven-length winner over this distance on a muddy track on May 18th. He’s up in class today and the conditions are likely to be quite different but it’s hard not to put him on top and he should win again. (7) NICE HUMOR is also up in class and while his victory was slightly less emphatic, there’s no reason why he won’t be able to compete at this level. Already proven at this level is (2) SWEET MEMORY, who has finished 3rd, 4th and 2nd in three class 5 efforts since getting her (more…)

Indian King & Darryll Holland Win First Leg Of 2017 Korean Triple Crown

If there is to be a Korean Triple Crown winner this year then his name is Indian King. The 74/1 outsider took the initiative under jockey Darryll Holland in the early part of the race and clung on to defeat Royal Ruby and American Power and claim the first Jewel in the Crown, the KRA Cup Mile at Busan on Sunday afternoon.

Punters couldn’t split Breeders’ Cup winner and runner-up Final Boss and Daeho Sidae sending them off as almost co-favourites but it was Illyu Star and longest shot on the board Taeyangui Jeonseol who were out of the gates the quickest. By the end of the straight, however, Holland had brought Indian King up alongside the leader and as they rounded the corner he kicked on in front and had stolen three lengths on the field as they straightened up.

The challenges would arrive too late. Daeho Sidae, expected to lead, offered little while Final Boss had far too much to do. Instead, while Holland coaxed his mount home, the one who would get the closest would be Royal Ruby. He had been the back-marker  for much of the race but flew home to get within half a length of the winner on the line. The Peter Wolsley trainee, who also started as an outsider, must surely be very much in the Derby mix now. American Power was just a further head back in 3rd while there was a 5-length gap back to Daeho Sidae who led home the rest.

KRA Cup Mile (KOR G2) – Busan Racecourse – 1600M – April 2 2017

1. Indian King (KOR) [Biwa Shinseiki – Indian Diamond (Indian Charlie)] – Darryll Holland – 75.0, 17.5
2. Royal Ruby (KOR) [Chapel Royal – Red Ruby (Yehudi)] – Jo Sung Gon – 4.6
3. American Power (KOR) [Ecton Park – White Angelica (Quiet American)] – 1.7
Distances: 0.5 lengths / Head
Also Ran: 4. Daeho Sidae (KOR) 5. Final Boss (KOR) 6. Ice Marine (KOR) 7. Muhan Yeoljeong (KOR) 8. Illyu Star (KOR) 9. Wonder Wall (KOR) 10. Lion Rock (KOR) 11. Taeyangui Jeonseol (KOR)

Indian King [Biwa Shinseiki – Indian Diamond (Indian Charlie)] is a half-brother to Indian Star, winner of last year’s Jeju Governor’s Cup and one of the top sprinters at the track – she came out one race later on Sunday afternoon and ran 2nd over 1200M to Triple Five in a class 1 handicap.

Indian Diamond herself was an $18,000 purchase at the Keeneland September Sale in 2002. She ran 36 times at Seoul between 2003 and 2006 winning on 3 occasions and in addition to Indian Star has had three others make the track so far, although only one of them was a winner.

For trainer Mun Je Bok, it was his biggest win to date; his first Group 2 having previously won Group 3 events with Hangangui Gijeok, Perdido Pomeroy and of course, Indian Star. 

As for Darryll Holland, it was his first Listed or Group winner in Korea. After the race, Holland noted that he isn’t able to ride as many as he would like due to a minimum riding weight of 54kg. He paid tribute to the preparation done by the trainer and thanked him for putting him on. There’ll be no trouble making weight for the Korean Derby next month.

Can Indian King get 1800M at Seoul? It makes for a fascinating Derby on the second Sunday in May.