Wednesday, April 13, 2016

Flashback: 2000 Satsuki Sho


April 16, 2000 at Nakayama Racecourse
60th Satsuki Sho(Japanese 2000 Guineas)

Air Shakur triumphs Satsuki Sho
The Satsuki Sho, a first leg of the Triple Crown Races for 3-year-olds, was won by second pick Air Shakur, who beat favorite Daitaku Riva by a neck, with outsider Titanic O two and a half lengths back third. 
Yutaka Take rode the winner to gain his second Satsuki Sho victory. He won the race on Narita Taishin in 1993. Hideyuki Mori, trainer of Air Shakur, was provided with his first Satsuki Sho title.

Purple Ebisu, who rushed into the lead as expected, with Meiner Condor on his heels, set the pace for the opening 1,000-meter in 1:00.2 that was mediocre.

Yutaka Take kept Air Shakur well in the rear until he asked his colt at aroung 600-meter remaining, to move toward the front. In response to Take, Air Shakur made up grounds on the final bend. As the field entered into the sretch, the Sunday Silence colt Air Shakur sailed on the far outside within striking distance. Meanwhile, Daitaku Riva, traveling on the inside, was about to come out of the crowd. With 200-meter to go, Daitaku Riva passed Purple Ebisu to take a slightly lead with Air Shakur closing in swiftly. The two made a neck-to-neck battle for the rest of the way. In the end, Air Shakur beat Daitaku Riva in the last stride, clocking 2:01.8 for 2,000-meter turf. Titanic O scrambled into third with Joten Brave fourth.

A maximum of 18 went to the post. However, 17 runners were on the course. Unfortunately, third pick Rugger Regulus fell off  his rider Tetsuo Sato and got caught in the gate, simultaneously upon completion of opening the gate. He has showed a tendency to behave badly in the gate before.

Air Shakur, bred by Shadai Farm in Chitose , Hokkaido, has now recorded three wins of six starts with increasing a career earnings to more than 177 million yen. Air Shakur broke a maiden at Hanshin last November after finishing fifth in his debut. He ran second in the condition race before winning the Hopeful Stakes at Nakayama Dec. 26, 1999. In the Yayoi Sho prior to the Satsuki Sho, Air Shakur finished second to Fusaichi Zenon by comining from behind.

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