Friday, November 27, 2009

Contenders of Japan Cup 2009


Asakusa Kings(White Muzzle - Croupier Star, by Sunday Silence)
Has plenty of stamina; his best form was when he won Kikuka Sho two seasons ago; picked up a couple of grade scores earlier this season; well-beaten in Tenno Sho Autumn on his latest running; this longer trip could produce a better result, but needs rapid improvement.

Never Bouchon(Marvelous Sunday - Pearl Necklace, by Mill Reef)
On and off performer on the grade level; beat Air Shady to win AJC Hai in late-January; this will be his first start since May 3 when he had a disappointing result in Tenno Sho Spring; obviously, a tough task on this highest-level competition.

Air Shady(Sunday Silence - Air Deja Vu, by Northern Dancer)
Aged horse who has yet to win this season, but put his name on the board for some earnings; did not come out right in Tenno Sho Autumn; one of the outsiders.

Eishin Deputy(French Deputy - Eishin McAllen, by Woodman)
Last year's Takarazuka Kinen(g1) winner; had no impact on Tenno Sho Autumn and All Comers in his last 2 starts having sidelined for more than a year; has yet to win beyond 2,200 meters, but his supporters expect him to produce a much better run this time.

Vodka(Tanino Gimlet - Tanino Sister, by Rousillon)
Most popular horse and great mare who has scored g1 every year since she debuted at age 2; won Japanese Derby(which is the same distance and course as Japan Cup) two seasons ago, but her recent runs indicated that she prefers a high-paced race such as a 1,600-meter trip; a key to success will be how she runs in early stage to save energy for the stretch; it will be interesting that Christophe Lemaire teams up with her for the first time; the French jockey has regulary ridden in Japan since 2002.

Red Desire(Manhattan Cafe - Great Sunrise, by Caerleon)
One of the best fillies in the 3-year-old division; finally gained g1 victory in Shuka Sho last outing after finishing second at a couple of filly classics earlier this season; untested against top older horses and how she runs this Sunday could be a tough assignment, but certainly she deserves to lineup in this strong field.

Just As Well(USA)(A.P. Indy - No Matter What, by Nereyev)
Has exclusively run at North America with a couple of grade victories this season; showed good gallops at Tokyo main course on 11/26; the long stretch of Tokyo course will suit him for a strong finish.

Meiner Kitz(Chief Bearhart - Takara Kanna, by Soccer Boy)
Showed good form earlier this season with surprising victory in Tenno Sho Spring; ran poorly in Kyoto Daishoten at his sole start in this Fall season; the JC distance may be a bit shorter than his best trip; do not underestimate him, but certainly one of the outsiders.

Reach the Crown(Special Week - Crownpiece, by Seattle Slew)
Has a strong front style which gave him a couple of classic runner-ups; recently delivered second inKikuka Sho last month; skipped Mile Championship to run this Sunday; definitely stay the JC distance and attempts to bring his stamina into this prestigious race.

Oken Bruce Lee(Jungle Pocket - Silver Joy, by Silver Deputy)
Winner of 2008 Kikuka Sho who finished fifth, not far behind Screen Hero, in last year's JC; got winning form in Kyoto Daishoten and followed up with fourth in Tenno Sho Autumn in his latest run; could produce a better result than last year with the best run of form.

Marsh Side(USA)(Gone West - Colonial Play, by Pleasant Colony)
Returns to Japan for revenging a defeat without run, scratch of 2008 JC due to fever; demoted to 4th from 1st in Northern Dancer Turf S on his 2 starts back; has not won since 2008 Canadian Inernational S.

Scintillo(GB)(Fantastic Light - Danseuse de Soir, by Thatching)
Decent stayer who has spent a busy season, registering 3 wins in 2009; the grass will be suitable, but he has to handle a faster pace; the soft ground would be appreciated.

Yamanin Kingly(Agnes Digital - Yamanin Arena, by Sunday Silence)
Had been good 2009 campaign with Sapporo Kinen victory until this colt was well-beaten in his last 2 starts; has yet to have a big impact on grade one event; an outsider

Inti Raimi(Special Week - Andes Lady, by Northern Taste)
Has not done anything in 4 starts this season; finished far behind in a lower class last outing; one of the longshot outsiders.

Interpatation(USA)(Longfuhr - Idealistic Cause, by Habitony)
Turf Classic Invitational S winner who has exclusively raced in US circuit; he is in shape according to connections; has to deal with firm gound at possibly fast-pace race.

Conduit(IRE)(Dalakhani - Well Head, by Sadler's Wells)
Multiple group/grade one winner in Europe and US; considered one of the best runners in Europe with a couple of g1 glory including King George VI this season; comes here off a back-to-back victory in BC Turf; runs well at this distance and could handle a fast-paced race on Japanese firm ground; production of his bullet finish is expected; could be one of the major contenders.

Cosmo Bulk(Zagreb - Iseno Tosho, by Tosho Boy)
Veteran NRA runner; this will be his 6th JC run; his best JC finish was second in 2004; his best performance was when winning Singapore International 3 years ago; a longshot outsider.

Screen Hero(Grass Wonder - Running Heroine, by Sunday Silence)
Defending champion who had not done well this season until he finished second behind Company in Tenno Sho Autumn; the extended distance at his favorite course would be welcomed; No surprise that he reproduces a big run like last year; Reunite with Italian rider Mirco Demuro would be helpful very much.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Quite a task for Red Desire.