Monday, March 26, 2007

Suzuka Phoenix dominates Takamatsunomiya

The Takamatsunomiya Kinen looked like a wide-open contest in a pre-race talk, but it turned out to be a dominant victory for Suzuka Phoenix, who drew away from the rest in the last 200 meters.

Yutaka Take-steered Suzuka Phoenix ranked at mid-field until he went into the far turn, and then
he produced a splendid stretch run for a 2 1/2-length victory. In the Chukyo muddy 1,200-meter course, the 5-year-old horse stopped the clock in 1 minute 8.90 seconds.

Peer Gynt and Precise Machine, both of whom came with a belated charge, finished second and third respectively. A neck separated the two. A half-length behind, Venus Line took fourth with Orewa Matteruze another neck further back fifth in the maximum field of 18.

Mitsuru Hashida, trainer of Suzuka Phoenix, said, "Take had a good and aggressive ride, making the move earlier than usual because of the really heavy ground. His next prime target will be the Yasuda Kinen. We have not decided yet to run him in a prep or go straight into the g1 mile event."

Suzuka Phoenix, owned and bred by Keiji Nagai, is a 5-year-old son of Sunday Silence and the Fairy Kine mare Rose of Suzuka. He has now registered 7 wins in 17 starts. The 98.9+ million yen first prize for the g1 sprint brought his career earnings to 251+ million yen.

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