Sunday Seoul & Busan: Donga Ilbo Cup Race-By-Race Preview (February 10)

Silver Wolf was last year’s Champion Mare and she returns to action at Seoul Racecourse on Sunday when she is expected to start a strong favourite in the Donga Ilbo Cup over 1800M. She will be ridden by Djordje Perovic, making his last appearance at Seoul for at least the time being as he seeks to recover from a back injury. There are 11 races at Seoul from 10:45 to 18:00 and 6 at Busan from 12:40 to 17:05. Here are the previews (only Seoul is on overseas simulcast this week): 

Silver Wolf Munhwa

Djordje Perovic & Silver Wolf will attempt to win the Donga Ilbo Cup on the Serbian jockey’s last day at Seoul (Pic: KRA)

Race 1: Class 5 (1000M) Handicap / KRW 40 Million

A winner at class 6 over 1300M in December, (7) LEONNING STROM was 3rd on his first try at this level in a stiffer contest than this on January 13th having led for most of the race. He drops back to the minimum today and will be expected to win. (9) SUN BOLT was an all the way winner on debut on January 7th. He’s up in class here but if he gets off to the same kind of start he did that day, then he has a big chance. (2) MYEONGPUM BOBAE remains winless but steps back to the minimum today having weakened in both her latest two over further and she should be close. Back on Myeongpum Bobae’s debut, she was 2nd to (6) LUCKY MISS. The latter has only raced once since – a full thirteen weeks ago – and is worthy of another chance. (10) MAGIC AI returns to action for the first time in nine months and performed pleasingly enough in a January trial to come straight into placing contention.

Selections (7) Leonning Strom (9) Sun Bolt (2) Myeongpum Bobae (10) Magic Ai
Next Best 6, 12
Fast Start 2, 5, 6, 9

Race 2: Class 5 (1300M) Handicap / KRW 40 Million

Both (6) KWAEHAN YEBONGSAN and (10) AMARONE are up in class having registered their maiden wins, both at this distance, on their respective last starts. This all-filly/mare contest is not a strong one and both can be expected to go well with Amarone slightly favoured to prevail. She’ll likely try to come from just behind the early speed which will probably be set by Kwaehan Yebongsa. Form doesn’t read well for the rest of them so we’re looking for one who finds herself in a better spot today than in recent outings. Punters will turn to (11) CHUKBOGUI YEOLMAE who comes in following a series of 4th and 5th place finishes in slightly sterner company and can benefit from the services of Moon Se Young today. (1) ARABIA GONGJU and (7) JASEONG GUNJU are others who fit the criteria for improvement here.

Selections (10) Amarone (6) Kwaehan Yebongsan (11) Chukbogui Yeolmae (1) Arabia Gongju
Next Best 7, 3
Fast Start 3, 6, 9

Race 3: Class 6 (1300M) Allowance / KRW 24 Million

(2)  DUAL CHOEGANG makes his first start for Italian trainer Luigi Riccardi and it could very well be a winning one. The four-year-old had been getting closer culminating in a 2nd place, just beaten a neck, at the distance in December. That wasn’t a very strong race, but this isn’t much stiffer, and he should win. (11) JEJUI HEUKSEON was sent off as favourite in a similar contest to this back on January 14th. He briefly touched the front about a furlong out before being beaten into 4th and he may well provide the biggest test today. We’re struggling with the rest though. (3) LAST CONCERT has a 5th place finish to her name in similar company in December and while she hardly impressed on return last month, she could go well here. (6) VALLEY MOON and (12) BAEKDU POWER best of a limited rest.

Selections (2) Dual Choegang (11) Jejui Heukseon (3) Last Concert (6) Valley Moon
Next Best 12, 1
Fast Start 4, 5, 8

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

Three of these raced each other at class and distance on January 13th. (2) BOLD SHINING finished the best of them in 2nd with (1) BACK TO BACK in 4th (the pair of them split by Leonning Strom who we saw in race 1) and (4) HAENGUN NURI 5th. Back To Back began the race as favourite on the strength od a very solid December win over 1200M that got him promoted in class although Bold Shining also entered a winner. We’re going to go for the form to be overturned today and for Back To Back to be on top. (3) MACHA BUCHA comes in following a useful 4th place over 1300M two weeks ago and will likely set the (more…)


Seoul Saturday: Race-By-Race Preview (February 10)

There are 12 Saturday races in Seoul with the first at 10:45 and the last at 18:00. Here are the previews:

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

A maiden for three-year-olds to begin with and there is an interesting first-time starter in the shape of (1) JILPUNG GANGJA. Progeny of a sire and dam who both ran in Korea so he was never going to be a sales-topper but his half-brother performed well in three starts and he certainly looked good himself when easily winning a trial last month. The track was very slow that day and we’ll not read too much into it but he showed enough to suggest he can be taken seriously here. It may be best to side with experience though and (9) J.S. STORM (whose sire and dam also both ran in Korea) comes in off a 2nd and 3rd from his latest two and surely goes close again. (8) SEOUL STORY parted company with his jockey on leaving the gates when well-fancied two weeks ago and will be backed again while (4) GIGA LIGHT and (10) ACE CANT are others who can improve.

Selections (9) J.S. Storm (1) Jilpung Gangja (8) Seoul Story (4) Giga Light
Next Best 10, 6, 7
Fast Start 1, 5, 8, 9

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

Another set of three-year-olds here and not much experience between them. A few have already caught the eye though. (6) CAMP TOUCH came close to winning over the distance on what was her second start a month ago, just being beaten a nose having been on pace throughout and with a good start, she can go close once more. Also expected to be away well is (4) VICAR SCOOP, a solid 3rd on debut a month ago and likely to improve. (9) JEONGSANG MUJEOK has been 3rd on both her two starts so far and there is no reason why she can’t repeat. The name suggests we might want to take a watching brief with (1) WAIT AND SEE, but he looked good in a trial and Moon Se Young riding will tempt plenty.

Selections (6) Camp Touch (4) Vicar Scoop (1) Wait And See (9) Jeongsang Mujeok
Next Best 8, 7
Fast Start 1, 4, 6, 7

Race 3: Class 6 (1300M) Allowance / KRW 40 Million

(12) GANGTOMA was a good 2nd on debut on January 13th. He ran on well and the step up in trip today should suit. (4) SPECIAL WINNER beat (3) DORAON ACHIM HAE and (7) SHARK DAEJANGGEUN at the distance in early January before going on to run 3rd in a similar contest three weeks ago. All three should be in the hunt here with Doran Achim Hae most favoured for improvement. (2) BODEURAM and (9) KING POSE have both shown glimpses of talent and may improve today.

Selections (12) Gangtoma (3) Doran Achim Hae (4) Special Winner (2) Bodeuram
Next Best 9, 7
Fast Start 1, 3, 4, 11

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

(3) DUSON WANGJA came up short when favourite at this distance three weeks ago, ending up in 4th place having failed to quicken when well placed. It wasn’t a bad run though and he’s shown enough ability over his four starts to date to be given another chance here. (1) NAEGA KKEUTPANWANG and (8) STRONG CAPTAIN ran 3rd and 6th respectively when they raced each other over the distance on January 14th and the former especially looks nicely in for at least a repeat. (2) CITY ANGEL steps up in trip for (more…)

Sunday Seoul & Busan: Race-By-Race Preview (February 4)

Another cold spell has gripped the peninsula this weekend but racing will be going ahead as usual at both Seoul & Busan on Sunday. There are 11 races at Seoul from 10:45 to 18:00 and 6 at Busan from 12:40 to 17:05. Here are the previews:

Ecton Blade

2017 Breeders’ Cup winner Ecton Blade kicks off his 3yo campaign at Busan on Sunday (Pic: KRA)

Seoul Race 1: Class 6: Allowance / KRW 24 Million

(3) THUNDER MARINE has come close in each of three outings so far and while he could only manage 4th when favourite last time, he can get the early lead here and make all. (4) ILGAKSU and (1) MACHO HIME finished 2nd and 4th when they raced each other at the distance on January 7th and both can challenge again. Ilgaksu will most likely challenge Thunder Marine on the early pace and looks to have the best chance of beating him. 5th in that race was (2) JOEUN NADEURI, who is a little more experienced and already has a 3rd place to her name. She can go well here. Also experienced and in the frame is (5) CHOWON YEOJEONSA, who comes in off a best so far 2nd. Wildcard could be (8) INDIAN ECO who has been unspectacular but competent in both efforts so far.

Selections (3) Thunder Marine (4) Ilgaksu (1) Macho Hime (5) Chowon Yeojeonsa
Next Best 8, 2
Fast Start

 Seoul Race 2: Class 6 (1300M) Allowance / KRW 40 Million

(6) SEUNGRI PLUS was a well beaten 4th behind a good winner on December 23rd, but it was an encouraging first try at this distance and he looks to have scope to improve today. She can get on the early speed and go all the way. Also looking for a fast start will be (9) CHEON BYEOL, who after an inauspicious debut, has followed up with back to back 4th place finishes and can also improve. (11) SKY DOLPUNG put in a useful 3rd place a month ago and should be in at least the placing frame again while (3) ROYAL PRINCE and (7) BRILLIANT are others to consider.

Selections (6) Seungri Plus (9) Cheon Byeol (11) Sky Dolpung (7) Brilliant
Next Best 3, 4
Fast Start 4, 6, 9

 Seoul Race 3: Class 5 (1300M) Handicap / KRW 40 Million

(5) STAR CAT finds herself up in class despite remaining a maiden but the manner of her back to back runner-up finishes suggests that she has a win in her and also that she should have little to fear at class 5, especially in an all-filly contest such as this. She’ll likely be on or close to the early speed. (12) BIG EAR was a very easy winner on debut but didn’t go quite so well when sent off as favourite on his first try at this class over 1200M on December 17th. He’ll have to overcome the wide draw but he should be in contention here. (1) RUBY BEOLKIN remains winless after ten attempts but shouldn’t be too far away while (4) CHO ORONG MA and (9) ROYAL PARK are others in the hunt.

Selections (5) Star Cat (12) Big Ear (1) Ruby Beolkin (4) Cho Orong Ma
Next Best 9, 3
Fast Start 5, 6, 12

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

(1) AMENDA has closed from well off the pace to for a win and 2nd place in her latest two starts, both at this distance and the most recent of which was at this class. She’s been drawn inside today though and we’re going to expect her to go straight to the front and look to lead all the way. Perhaps a little ironically, while we expect the closer to try to lead here, the threats are likely to come from behind. (10) SPECIAL LIGHT and (12) MAMKKEOT DALYEO are both proven money winners (if not actual winners) at this distance and can finish strongly while (3) SKY BIG steps back in trip after a reasonable showing at 1700M last time and can go close. (7) GWACHEON TUHON and the up in class and back from a spell (8) KING EXPLOIT are others to look out for.

Selections (1) Amenda (10) Special Light (3) Sky Big (12) Mamkkeot Dalyeo
Next Best 8, 7
Fast Start 1, 4, 9, 12

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

Having breezed through a trial, (5) LUCKY ROOKIE was a comfortable winner on debut on December 17th, sitting handy early before going clear in the closing stages. He returns here up in class but at the same distance and in with a chance. A week later, (10) SEUNGNI NARAE did the same thing, comfortably winning on debut and is in the same position of being up in class with a chance. (9) BLACK WIND and (4) LEAD UP came home 2nd and 3rd at class and distance in December. The latter went on to run 6th of 12 at the start of January and both can be in the frame again here. (2) EAGLE SKY was considered good enough to run in a top juvenile race las October. He came 11th of 14 before then running last over 1300M in December. He went back to trial after that and returned, looking better when 4th at this distance three weeks ago and can continue to improve today.

Selections (10) Seungni Narae (5) Lucky Rookie (2) Eagle Sky (9) Black Wind
Next Best 4, 3
Fast Start 4, 5

Busan Race 2: Class 5 (1600M) Handicap / KRW 40 Million

(1) ORYONG could only manage 5th when well backed on what was his first try at this distance two weeks ago but he got a bad trip that day, checking at the start and having further problems in running later. He’s sent back out again quickly and this time he should win. (9) ARAM NARAE finds herself up in class having finished runner-up in both her outings to date. She was beaten by Oryong on debut and by another decent looking (more…)

Seoul Saturday: Race-By-Race Preview (February 3)

Big fields in the capital this weekend. There are 12 Saturday races at Seoul from 10:45 to 18:00. Here are the previews:

Race 1: Class 6 (1000M) Allowance / KRW 24 Million

Weak contest to begin with and (2) SKY MARINE has probably shown the most ability among these so far. She has a 2nd and a 4th among four prior outings and from a decent draw can get forward early. (3) ENJOY MY SHOW improved last time and should be similarly prominent while (4) RUN AWAY may benefit from dropping back to this trip which is where she recorded her previous best finish of 3rd. (1) ACE TROPHY could make the most of the inside gate to get on speed early and if he does, he should be looking for a career-best finish while (12) CHOWON GUNJU didn’t do anything especially wrong on debut three weeks ago and may improve.

Selections (2) Sky Marine (3) Enjoy My Show (4) Run Away (1) Ace Trophy
Next Best 12, 9
Fast Start 1, 2, 3, 9

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

Three-year-olds only and eight of the twelve are first-time starters with one of them set to be favourite. That’s (2) JANGSAN WILD won a December trial and then went through another in good order last week and is expected to win first-up here. Other debut-makers who caught the eye in their heats include (1) DALLYEORA GWANGSAN and (8) DANGYEON HAJI, whose slow qualifying times can be excused by the track condition on those days as well as (9) DANCING BLADE, who was well back behind an exciting type (Musa) but seemed to know what she was doing. Of the four who raced before, only (6) DAE UNHA looks an attractive proposition. He debuted solidly enough in a better race than this in December and can build on it today.

Selections (2) Jangsan Wild (6) Dae Unha (9) Dancing Blade (1) Dallyeora Gwangsan
Next Best 8, 10
Fast Start 1, 2

Race 3: Class 6 (1300M) Allowance / KRW 40 Million

(9) CLEAN UP SECRET beat three of these on his way to 3rd place over this distance on January 6th. True, it was the third time in a row he’s come up slightly short when sent off as favourite but he’s going to be favourite again and this time can get it right. (4) DOUBLE GOLD and (6) BAEKDUUI JEONGSANG came home in 4th and 6th in that race wand will be among those with the best chance of getting close this time. Speaking of favourites coming up short, (2) CHONGAL GACHI did exactly that on January 7th at the distance, finishing 2nd having led briefly close to the finish and he too gets another chance today.

Selections (9) Clean Up Secret (4) Double Gold (6) Baekduui Jeongsang (2) Chongal Gachi
Next Best 8, 1
Fast Start 2, 6, 9

Race 4: Class 6 (1300M) Allowance / KRW 40 Million

(6) RAISE ME UP improved with a close 2nd place in a similar all-filly race to this on January 6th with two of her rivals here behind her and with Moon Se Young on board for the first time, she can make the breakthrough here. (9) ARGO UNIQUE returned from three months off to show a big improvement at this distance in December, coming home 2nd and should be on the early pace here. Hansen filly (1) CLAY WIND also improved on what was just her 2nd start on Christmas Eve, again coming home in 2nd having run on nicely. She steps up in distance for the first time as does (4) DAECHEONUI SARANG and must be considered. More experienced is (3) MIGHTY COOL and she should be capable of repeating the 4th place she achieved in a very similar strength race to this four weeks ago.

Selections (6) Raise Me Up (9) Argo Unique (1) Clay Wind (4) Daecheonui Sarang
Next Best 3, 2
Fast Start 1, 4, 9

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

You’d not put your mortgage on many of these but (7) GONSEOL and (5) WOOSEORA ICHEON ran well enough when coming home 3rd and 4th respectively at class and distance in a better race than this on January 7th and this time have every chance of contesting top honours. There were three lengths between them that day but Wooseora Icheon has a better draw today and could well make it to the front early. (3) POWER (more…)

Sunday Seoul & Busan: Race-By-Race Preview (January 28) Segye Ilbo Cup Day

The first Korean Listed or Stakes race of 2018 takes place at Seoul Racecourse on Sunday afternoon and a good one it is too as thirteen runners, including last year’s Derby winner Final Boss, go in the Segye Ilbo Cup over 1200M. In total there are 11 Sunday races at Seoul from 10:45 to 18:00 and 6 at Busan from 12:40 to 17:05. Here are the previews:

Always Winner

Always Winner won the Segye Ilbo Cup last year but he’ll have a hard time defending it (Pic: KRA)

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

An improved 3rd on what was her third start on January 6th leads us to put (9) SEOUL STORY on top in this all-filly (and one mare) event. She raced prominently that day and seems to be figuring things out. The primary danger is (12) BURUI SOKDO, 2nd on debut a full twelve-lengths behind the promising Galaxy Power but nevertheless showing promise herself. The wide draw is perhaps not ideal but can certainly be overcome. (1) ROAD WOMAN and (5) ORANGE SOCKS have shown some glimpses of potential talent and may improve while among the four first-time starters, (11) QUEEN FORCE ONE is the standout. She looked good in trials and has a top jockey on board first-up.

Selections (9) Seoul Story (12) Burui Sokdo (11) Queen Force One (1) Road Woman
Next Best 5, 8
Fast Start 2, 5, 9, 12

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

(5) GLOBAL NEWS will be overwhelming favourite to win this. He was a very solid 2nd to Nam Son and ahead of one who won yesterday in what is turning out to have been a very decent race on debut in December and if he runs anything like that, there is nothing here that can challenge him. He should get and easy lead and an easy win. Slim pickings among the rest. (4) GRAND DOLPUNG was well down the track debuting in that very same race as Global News but may improve while of the debut-makers, (2) HAPPY MAUNTAIN and (3) SKY STORM perhaps have the best chance of doing well in their first outings.

Selections (5) Global News (4) Grand Dolpung (2) Happy Mauntain (3) Sky Storm
Next Best 8
Fast Start 5

Seoul Race 3: Class 6 (1000M) Allowance / KRW 40 Million 

(9) GUREUM SONJITHAE managed a decent 2nd place back in November over 1300M which led him to be sent off as favourite for his reappearance over the same trip just before Christmas. It didn’t quite work out as she came home 5th but stepped back to the minimum today and with seemingly slightly softer opposition, she can win this. (1) RAON DOLPUNG was an improved 3rd when tried at this trip for the first time on Christmas Eve and should be the main threat, likely joining the favourite on the early speed. (2) JEWANGUI BYEOL was a creditable 5th on debut in a different race on the same day and can build on that today. (4) EMERALD KING and (8) AREUMDAUN CHEONSA both went poorly last start but can improve.

Selections (9) Gureum Sonjithae (1) Raon Dolpung (2) Jewangui Byeol (4) Emerald King
Next Best 8
Fast Start 1, 8, 9

Seoul Race 4: Class5 (1300M) Handicap / KRW 40 Million 

(8) BRANDON beat (3) STRONG MAN as the pair raced 1st and 3rd at class and distance on a very wet track on Christmas Eve. Both were outsiders that day and the conditions will be very different but both are very much in the frame again. (12) LUCKY BONGHWA may be yet to win in six attempts but he’s never been any worse than 5th and has generally been beaten by decent types. He’ll be looking to get into a forward position early from the widest gate and if he manages it, he can be close. (5) DAECHEON ACE is perhaps the one who enters in the best form though. 2nd and 3rd in his last two, both competitive contests at this class, he’s ideally drawn to get the early lead and can go all the way this time.

Selections (5) Daecheon Ace (12) Lucky Bonghwa (8) Brandon (3) Strong Man
Next Best 7, 10
Fast Start 5, 7, 8, 12

Seoul Race 5: Class 4 (1000M) Handicap / KRW 60 Million

Aussie import (4) PRINCE MEMORY led for much of his debut on December 17th but just came up short over 1200M. The Sepoy gelding drops back to the minimum distance today and has solid claims for a maiden victory here. (1) TONGIL DAERO steps up in class following an all the way win over the distance at domestic class 5 three weeks ago and can follow-up. Those two will likely be contesting the early lead. (11) BEST YEJI was a (more…)

Seoul Saturday: Race-By-Race Preview (January 27) – Cheongdam Dokki!

It’s been a bitingly cold week on the Korean peninsula but the worst seems to be over and there is a good 12-race card at Seoul on Saturday with the 1st at 10:45 and the last at 18:00. And what better way to warm up than with the 2018 season debut of Cheongdam Dokki? He goes in race 11. Here are the previews:

Cheongdam Dokki 2

Cheongdam Dokki makes his 2018 debut on Saturday (Pic: KRA)

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

Just fillies here and plenty in with a shout. (6) SEONGBUL CHAMP has shown some ability in three starts so far including a good 5th of 12 in tougher company than this last start. She trialled up nicely a couple of weeks ago and is a prime contender here. (5) BETTINA’s best result so far came on her only prior outing at this distance and with Djordje Perovic on board, she too looks to have a strong chance. (1) HWANSANGUI BIT showed improvement on her second start and can maintain it here while (9) RUBY FALLS and (12) MORAN DONGBEAK are others who can get close.

Selections (6) Seongbul Champ (5) Bettina (1) Hwansangui Bit (9) Ruby Falls
Next Best 12, 2
Fast Start 1, 6, 7

Race 2: Class 6 (1000M) Allowance / KRW 24 Million

(9) JEONGSANG DOLPUNG led for much of the way round over 1300M last start and dropped back to the minimum distance today, is the one to beat. He previously ran 4th at this trip in a tougher race than this and can get it right this time. (3) BIG AURORA has shown some talent, principally when running 2nd at this distance in October only beaten half a length by Ji Seoni, who went on to win again. He’s disappointed as favourite in two losing efforts since but gets another chance here. (1) CHEONGDAM QUEENS and (4) SAE DIXIE are likely to challenge Jeongsang Dolpung for the early lead and can stay on until the business end of the race while (2) BIG THUNDER did nothing particularly wrong on debut and can improve.

Selections (9) Jeongsang Dolpung (3) Big Aurora (1) Cheongdam Queens (2) Big Thunder
Next Best 4, 8
Fast Start 1, 4, 9

Race 3: Class 6 (1300M) Allowance / KRW 40 Million

With a 4th and a 2nd in her two starts to date (4) MASYA will be strongly favoured to finish on top here. In both those races, she’s come from well back and finished strongly and that’s what she’ll be looking to do here. Should she leave herself too much to do though, (10) HANSEN BAROWS can take advantage. He could well get an easy lead early on and that’s going to put pressure on the favourite. He could conceivably stay on all the way around. (1) THE FINAL has been 3rd in both her races so far, the latest at this distance and she has every chance of continuing that run today. (5) MACH SEUNGNI and (7) PALDO GANGTA looks best of the rest.

Selections (4) Masya (10) Hansen Barows (1) The Final (7) Paldo Gangta
Next Best 5, 8
Fast Start 10 

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

A winner on his debut in November and then a close 3rd behind Sinui Myeongryeong and Mask in a valuable race on Christmas Eve, (6) COMPLETE SWEEP is strongly favoured. He made all in that first-time win and should be able to get on or close to the early speed today and should win. (11) SEUNGRI SIDAE was one-paced on his latest on a (more…)

Sunday Seoul & Busan: Race-By-Race Preview (January 21)

There are 11 Sunday races at Seoul from 10:45 to 18:00 and 6 at Busan from 12:40 to 17:05. The day’s feature is at Busan in the shape of a “Road To G1” event over 1400M which features the likes of Haeya, Perdido Pomeroy, Drop The Beat, Diferent Dimension and the returning Macheon Bolt. Only Seoul is on overseas simulcast so here are the capital’s previews:

Race 1: Class 6 (1300M) Allowance / KRW 40 Million

(4) NEUL SACHAN is a rare runner by one of the most popular Korean racehorses of the early 2000s, Baekgwang and she looks a decent prospect too. 3rd on debut over 1000M a month ago running on nicely, she can benefit from the additional trip today and can win. Main danger is (3) RAON MIRACLE, who already has a 4th and consecutive 3rd place finishes at this distance. She’s not been quick but looks like she has a win in her at some point. (9) CHEON BYEOL and (11) FLYING HERA came home 6th and 6th respectively when they raced each other over the distance on December 16th. For both it was their second career start and for both it showed improvement and they can go close today. (8) SINUITAB is more experienced and while limited, she could match the 4th she managed behind Neul Sachan last time.

Selections (4) Neul Sachan (3) Raon Miracle (9) Cheon Byeol (11) Flying Hera
Next Best 8, 7
Fast Start 8, 11

Race 2: Class 6 (1300M) Allowance / KRW 40 Million

Small field here but it’s nicely competitive. (8) EAST KINGDOM led for much of the way over this distance on what was his second career start on December 16th only to ultimately have to settle for 2nd place and he has every chance of going one better today. (3) DUSON WANGJA has been getting closer across three starts so far, culminating in 3rd at 1200M last time and should take to the additional half furlong well. Both outings so far for (4) RAON SIRIUS have been at this distance and his 3rd place last time was promising while (2) DREAM INDY steps up in trip following 3rd on debut over 1000M and maybe has a little more to find. (6) CHEON MONG, also up in trip after coming 2nd over 1000M when favourite last month, is another in the frame.

Selections (8) East Kingdom (3) Duson Wangja (4) Raon Sirius (6) Cheon Mong
Next Best 1, 2
Fast Start 2, 4, 6

Race 3: Class 5 (1300M) Handicap / KRW 40 Million

A class 6 winner at the distance on November and then a close 2nd on his first try at this class on Christmas Eve, (9) GEUMSUN YOU is the one to beat here. He was favourite last time but it was sloppy conditions and this time he should make no mistake. (11) SHARP KAYLAN has performed creditably in two goes at this level so far and steps back up the distance at which he registered his solitary victory to date and can push the favourite. (1) SISPUMA WINNER and (4) BROWN BOMBER enter having run 3rd and 4th over class and distance on December 17th and should be in the placing frame again with (6) MALAKAS, up in trip following an decent 2nd place over 1000M last month also in with a shot.

Selections (9) Geumsun You (1) Sispuma Winner (11) Sharp Kaylan (4) Brown Bomber
Next Best 6, 8
Fast Start 8, 9, 11, 12

Race 4: Class 5 (1000M) Handicap / KRW 40 Million

(6) THE QUEEN GRACE was an easy winner on debut back in September but her only start since then was in the Gwacheon Mayor’s Cup at the end of October. She didn’t go well, fading without trace in the closing stages, but returns here following twelve weeks off and provided she gets a good start – and she’s ideally drawn to do so – she can return to winning ways here. Not an easy race though and (4) GOLD LEG could thwart her. She almost led the whole way around in a similar contest over 1300M on Christmas Eve and dropping back to the minimum today, should be a threat. (1) MENI PARK showed some early talent but had a troubled 2017. She trialled up very nicely in December though and jockey booking catches the eye. (7) ROYAL ACE struggled last time but is worth another go in this company today while it’s a similar story for (8) NAMWON QUEEN.

Selections (6) The Queen Grace (4) Gold Leg (1) Meni Park (7) Royal Ace
Next Best 8, 9
Fast Start 3, 4, 6, 8

Race 5: Class 6 (1700M) Allowance / KRW 24 Million

Not exactly one to get the pulses racing this but at the same time, tricky enough to make it interesting betting-wise. None of these are very good but three of them did come home 2nd, 3rd and 4th over the distance on December 23rd. (5) NANGMAN STAR was the best of them that day, ahead of (3) WIDAEHAN BALJAGUK and (4) BAEKDU POWER but there was only a length separating them and all three should have a good chance of going close here. (2) SAMDA BULKKOT also comes in having been 3rd at the distance last start. He is a slow starter but has shown he’s capable of staying on and passing plenty late on and he could figure in the closing stages. However, the early pace should be set by (7) ONNURI ALBA. He was slowly away but ultimately ended up leading on his first try over this distance on December 9th. He finished 4th but showed the distance suits and given a more forward ride today, he could just be the one to win.

Selections (7) Onnuri Alba (2) Samda Bulkkot (3) Widaehan Baljaguk (5) Nangman Star
Next Best 4
Fast Start 6, 7

Race 6: Class 4 (1700M) Handicap / KRW 60 Million

(10) GEUMA FORTE was a bit lacklustre last time but he’s a two-time winner at this distance, if not at this class and he does look the best in here. He’s run once a month since debut so may be in need of a spell, but he’s hardly alone in that and has every chance of winning this. Moon Se Young will give him a patient ride and look to swoop late. Trainer An Byung Ki had a great 2017 and while his 2018 has begun in ordinary fashion, his (6) ARGO AWESOME looks in the frame here. He returned from almost six months off to run 3rd over 1200M a month ago and looks ready to take on two turns for the first time, most likely leading from the gate. (4) SHUMA and (7) HAPPIEST are both up in class having run 1st and 3rd at the distance on December 16th. Shuma looks to have potential for more. Also up in class is (8) MAMBO KHAN. In his case he’s up in distance too but he’s won two from four so far and can be considered. On the other hand, (9) NALSSAEN GANGHO has only won one of his twenty-three previous starts but he looks to be coming into some form with 2nd place in a very similar class and distance race last time.

Selections (10) Geuma Forte (9) Nalssaen Gangho (6) Argo Awesome (4) Shuma
Next Best 8, 11, 1
Fast Start 3, 6, 8

Race 7: Class 4 (1700M) Allowance / KRW 60 Million

Dare we put (4) REAL GULCH on top? She’s raced eighteen times prior to today and remains a maiden yet has finished 2nd on no fewer than six occasions – all of them within her last eight outings. They include last time at class and distance on December 16th when she beat 3rd place (5) HANBIT NARA (another win-dodger) by two lengths. We’ve said this a couple of times before but really, she’ll not get a better chance of a win. (10) PHOENIX HEART is up in class following his maiden win on what was his first try at the distance on Christmas Eve. He had to battle for it and should be competitive here. (3) LONG WAY returned from a three-month spell to run 5th at the distance last time and can improve today. (6) CHICAGO ART struggled in stiffer company than this last time but scored a good 2nd at the distance the time before. (8) JANGBI CHEONBOK is up in class following the narrowest of victories at this distance and while he probably has a bit to find, there’s not too much to fear here.

Selections (4) Real Gulch (10) Phoenix Heart (3) Long Way (6) Chicago Art
Next Best 8, 5, 2
Fast Start 1, 6, 9

Race 8: Class 4 (1000M) Allowance / KRW 60 Million

With a 3rd and two 2nd places from his three outings so far and beaten by decent types on each occasion, it’s time for (5) RICHARDOFNEWSTEAD to make his own breakthrough today. He should be leading from gate to wire. It’s hard to imagine him being beaten but (6) JANGSAN BEARS put in a creditable showing in 4th on debut and could improve. (7) USEUNG TEUKKI too didn’t do anything wrong on his first start. (8) MORFHIS has been a touch disappointing in two efforts so far despite relatively high expectations. It’s early days though and he should be looking for a to-date best finish here. There are a couple of debut-makers with (3) CHOEGANG GOSU looking the better of them in trials.

Selections (5) Richardofnewstead (8) Mofphis (6) Jangsan Bears (7) Useung Teukki
Next Best 3, 1
Fast Start 5, 7

Race 9: Class 3 (1400M) Handicap / KRW 75 Million

After a 4th place on debut in September, (7) ROAD WINNER has won two in a row by a combined nine-lengths. He’s up in class today and slightly in distance too but neither should be too much of an issue. He doesn’t lead early in his races, but he has a strong finish and he can complete a hat-trick of victories here. This is by no means a bad race though and it’s his stiffest test so far. (1) SAMJUNG TAPIT enters off back to back 3rd places at class and distance in similar strength contests and will surely play a role again. Likewise, (3) CHEONJAEILU’s recent form reads well. (4) MIGHTY SSING is up in class and distance and while he won’t be among the favourites, he should be on the early pace and could spring a surprise. Competing with him for the early lead is likely to be (10) YEOKJEONUI USEUNG, who is similarly up in class and distance following a smart victory over 1200M last month.

Selections (7) Road Winner (1) Samjung Tapit (3) Cheonjaeilu (10) Yeokjeonui Useung
Next Best 4, 11, 12
Fast Start 1, 4, 10, 11

Race 10: Class 1 (1400M) Handicap / KRW 110 Million

(1) DONGCHONUI ACHIM has had a bit of a stop/start career but he is a solid sprinter and while the 2nd place he achieved over 1200M in December was in one of the weakest class 1 races in recent times at Seoul, this one isn’t especially stiff either and he could well go one better. (5) TAEYANGWANG came back into form on his latest at this distance last month, beating (8) GANGSEONG DAEGUK in the proves. Both should be in the frame. (6) JANGSAN COWBOY steps back in trip and may benefit. (7) JEONMUHUMU won his last start at this distance in October and if he can get on the early lead, should be a threat. (9) BRIGHT CAT is up in class following a four-length win at the distance seven weeks ago. He’s very nicely weighted and he shouldn’t be out of his depth.

Selections (1) Dongchonui Achim (8) Gangseong Daeguk (5) Taeyangwang (6) Jangsan Cowboy
Next Best 9, 2
Fast Start 1, 7, 11

Race 11: Class 3 (1200M) Handicap / KRW 75 Million

Competitive race to finish up with. (12) BEST TEN and (3) SCARLET WITCH came home 3rd and 4th when they raced each other at class and distance on November 18th. Neither have run since but both come in here looking to be leading contenders with Scarlet Witch marginally favoured to get on the early pace and go all the way. (1) SENTA POBA steps back in trip after enduring a chastening time at 1700M last month and should be much more comfortable today. (8) GWACHEONUI HAMSEON races for the first time since a strong 3rd in a better race than this n November and must be considered. The up in class (5) SIN DOLGYEOK is another in the frame.

Selections (3) Scarlet Witch (12) Best Ten (8) Gwancheonui Hamseon (1) Senta Poba
Next Best 5, 9
Fast Start 3, 5, 7, 11