Asia Express(USA) made a successful comeback off a miserable result in the Unicorn Stakes as he posted a decisive 3 1/2-length victory in the Leopard Stakes this afternoon at Niigata. In his only third start, Cry Smile clung to second with Runway Waltz finishing a neck behind in third.
Given an aggressive ride by Keita Tosaki, Asia Express with a black visor on his face was never out of the third spot before taking the race out in the stretch. The final time for the 1,800-meter distance was 1 minute 50.40 seconds on good track.
Asia Express, a 3-year-old colt by Henny Hughes out of the Running Stag mare Running Bobcats, has now recorded four wins in seven career starts. Ocala Stud in US bred the colt.
Satono Noblesse storms home in Kokura Kinen
Satono Noblesse stormed home at the rainy Kokura Racecourse, winning the 2,000-meter Kokura Kinen fair and square in 1 minute 59.80 seconds on good ground. Martinborough chased the winner down the stretch to finish a 1 3/4-length behind in second. Another 1 3/4-length back Meisho Naruto took third by leading the field from the start.
Satono Noblesse, a 4-year-old colt by Deep Impact out of the Tony Bin mare Cry with Joy, gained his second grade victory in the season following the grade three Kokura Daishoten.