Tuesday, March 29, 2016

Oka Sho(Japanese 1000 Guineas)

Oka Sho(Japanese 1000 Guineas)
Hanshin Race Course
3-year-old fillies, 1,600 meters, turf, right-handed
Weight: 55 kgs

The 1,600-meter Oka Sho is run on the Hanshin outer main course. It starts at just off the middle of the back stretch, goes around the bend, then runs into the 473.6-meter homestretch.

Brief History
The first run was in 1939 at Nakayama over 1,800 meters on turf under the name of Nakayama Yonsai Himba Tokubetsu. The race was run unde the name of Noryoku Kentei Race at Tokyo over 1,800 meters on turf in 1944. Following absences in 1945 and 1946 due to war, the race resumed in 1947, running over 1,600 meters at Kyoto for the first time. In the same year, the Oka Sho was first used as the race name. Hanshin hosted the Oka Sho for the first time in 1950. As the grading system began in 1984, the Oka Sho was graded as a grade one. In 2004, the door was open to foreign-bred horses. In 2010, with the race gained an international status, a maximum of nine foreign horses(either foreign-bred or foreign-trained horses) can run.

 The Oka Sho, the first filly classic of the year, is equivalent to the English 1000 Guineas. Twiple Crown Races for 3-year-old fillies are Oka Sho, Japanese Oaks and Shuka Sho.
Oka and Sho mean, respectively, cherry blossom and prize in English.

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