2018 News

October 21, 2018


Seventh Pick Fierement Outduels Second Favorite Etario in This Year’s Kikuka Sho
Kikuka Sho (Japanese St. Leger) (G1)

Kikuka Sho (Japanese St. Leger) (G1)

Seventh pick Fierement claimed this year’s Kikuka Sho (Japanese St. Leger), the last leg of the Triple Crown, and captured his first graded victory in his only fourth career start, to become the the Kikuka Sho champion with the least career starts. The son of Deep Impact broke his maiden in his debut start just this January and marked another win in the following Yamafuji Sho (Allowance) in April. His first grade-race challenge in the following Radio Nikkei Sho (G3) in July resulted in a runner-up effort. All his past three races were raced over 1,800 meters. This win marked trainer Takahisa Tezuka’s fourth JRA-G1 win following the 2013 Asahi Hai Futurity Stakes with Asia Express. For jockey Christophe Lemaire, it was his 19th JRA-G1 title following his Shuka Sho victory with Almond Eye just a week ago and his second Kikuka Sho title following his win with Satono Diamond in 2016.

Breaking smoothly from stall 12, Fierement traveled wide, settling around eighth from the front runner Generale Uno while Etario, breaking slowly from stall 9, steadily advanced forward in the first lap to position himself behind the subsequent winner. As the field of 18 crowded together rounding the last corners, Etario, under Mirco Demuro, took a wide turn and advanced to the front entering the homestretch while Fierement threaded through the horses and exerted a powerful late charge to catch up with the Stay Gold colt in the last 200 meters. The two colts dueled fiercely to the wire with Fierement claiming the race with a photo-finish win.

“I had confidence in him as he felt good during the training. We briefly met traffic in the straight but my mount stretched really well with his bursting kick. I congratulated Mirco right after crossing the wire, thinking that we had lost, so it’s unbelievable that we were able to win the race,” commented Christophe Lemaire.

You Can Smile hugged the rails inside Fierement at the stretch in the first lap, switched to the outside in the backstretch, positioning himself behind Fierement and inside Etario. Though briefly meeting traffic at the top of the stretch, the son of King Kamehameha found a clear path and surged out with Fierement in chase of Etario but weakened in the last 100 meters to finish 1-1/2 length behind in third.

Race favorite Blast Onepiece traveled in mid-pack, switched to the outside at the backstretch, advanced through the outer route after the third corner and ran willingly but failed to threaten top three finishers, crossing the wire in fourth.

Other Horses:
5th: (18) Glory Vase—sat towards rear, showed impressive late drive after turning wide
6th: (13) Time Flyer—raced in mid-pack, turned final corner behind Etario, showed effort
7th: (17) Chardonnay Gold—ran 3rd from rear, angled wide and timed tied fastest over last 3 furlongs, belatedly
8th: (5) Epoca d’Oro—chased leaders in 3rd or 4th, ran gamely until 200m pole, outrun by rivals thereafter
9th: (4) Generale Uno—set pace, overtaken by Etario at early stretch, gradually fell back
10th: (2) Grail—settled 2nd from rear, passed tired rivals at stretch, never a threat
11th: (16) Stay Foolish—positioned towards rear, even paced and unable to reach contention
12th: (10) African Gold—raced 3-wide in mid-pack, turned to lane in good striking position, lacked needed kick
13th: (14) Grandiose—traveled in mid-division, switched to outside at early stretch, never fired
14th: (6) Meisho Tekkon—sat 5-6th, found little room at early stretch and lost momentum, faded
15th: (11) Cosmic Force—tracked leaders in 3rd or 4th, ran out of steam 300m out
16th: (1) Aithon—saved ground in mid-group, dropped back at stretch
17th: (8) Kafuji Vanguard—chased leader in 2nd, faded after final corner
18th: (15) Oken Moon—was off slow, trailed in rear, no factor

3-year-old Colts and Fillies, 3,000 meters (about 15 furlongs), turf, right-handed
Sunday, October 21, 2018      Kyoto Racecourse       11th Race        Post time: 15:40
Total prize money: ¥ 259,200,000 (about US$ 2,357,000 <US$1=¥110>)
3-y-o: 57 kg (about 126 lbs), 2 kg allowance for Fillies, 2 kg allowance for Southern Hemisphere-bred born in 2015
Safety factor: 18 runners

FP BK PP Horse Sex
1 6 12 Fierement
C3 57.0 Deep Impact
Lune d’Or
C. Lemaire
T. Tezuka
Sunday Racing Co., Ltd.
Northern Racing
2 5 9
C3 57.0 Stay Gold
Hot Cha Cha
M. Demuro
Y. Tomomichi
G Riviere·Racing Co., Ltd.
Northern Farm
3 4 7 You Can Smile
C3 57.0 King Kamehameha
Mood Indigo
Y. Take
Y. Tomomichi
Kaneko Makoto Holdings Co., Ltd.
Kaneko Makoto Holdings Inc.
4 2 3 Blast Onepiece
C3 57.0 Harbinger
Tsurumaru Onepiece
K. Ikezoe
M. Otake
Silk Racing Co., Ltd.
Northern Farm
5 8 18 Glory Vase
C3 57.0 Deep Impact
Mejiro Tsubone
Y. Fukunaga
T. Ozeki
Silk Racing Co., Ltd.
Lake Villa Farm
6 7 13 Time Flyer
C3 57.0 Heart’s Cry
Time Traveling
R. Wada
K. Matsuda
Sunday Racing Co., Ltd.
Oiwake Farm
7 8 17 Chardonnay Gold
C3 57.0 Stay Gold
Self Preservation
K. Fujioka
Y. Ikee
Aoshiba Shoji Co., Ltd.
Paca Paca Farm
8 3 5 Epoca d’Oro
C3 57.0 Orfevre
Daiwa Passion
K. Tosaki
H. Fujiwara
K. Hidaka Breeders Union
Toru Tagami
9 2 4 Generale Uno
C3 57.0 Screen Hero
Shanghai Rock
H. Tanabe
E. Yano
G Riviere·Racing Co., Ltd.
Shinsei Farm
10 1 2 Grail
C3 57.0 Heart’s Cry
Platina Chalice
Y. Iwata
K. Nonaka
Kanayama Holdings Co., Ltd.
Northern Farm
11 8 16 Stay Foolish
C3 57.0 Stay Gold
Kauai Lane
Y. Fujioka
Y. Yahagi
Shadai Race Horse Co., Ltd.
Shadai Farm
12 5 10 African Gold
C3 57.0 Stay Gold
F. Matsuwaka
M. Nishizono
Darley Japan K. K
13 7 14 Grandiose
C3 57.0 Rulership
J. Moreira
Y. Tamura
Sunday Racing Co., Ltd.
Northern Farm
14 3 6
Meisho Tekkon
C3 57.0 Manhattan Cafe
A Shin Velocity
K. Matsuyama
Y. Takahashi
Yoshio Matsumoto
Shimoyashiki Bokujo
15 6 11 Cosmic Force
C3 57.0 King Kamehameha
S. Hamanaka
S. Kunieda
Sunday Racing Co., Ltd.
Northern Racing
16 1 1 Aithon
C3 57.0 King’s Best
Special Dinner
K. Kokubun
T. Igarashi
Tomiro Fukami
Niikappu Tagano Farm Ltd
17 4 8 Kafuji Vanguard
C3 57.0 Harbinger
H. Miyuki
S. Matsumoto
Mamoru Kato
Sakai Bokujo
18 7 15 Oken Moon
C3 57.0 Oken Bruce Lee
Moon Phase
H. Kitamura
S. Kunieda
Akira Fukui
Northern Farm
FP=Final Position / BK=Bracket Number / PP=Post Position / B=Blinker / Wgt=Weight / L3F=Time of Last 3 Furlongs (600m)
Note1: No foreign contenders
Note2: Figures quoted under Odds are Win Odds, which show the amount of money you get back per single unit (100yen), and Fav indicates the order of favorites.

TURNOVER FOR THE DAY: ¥ 25,795,216,400 ATTENDANCE: 55,059

PAY-OFF (for ¥100)
WIN No.12 ¥1,450 BRACKET QUINELLA 5-6 ¥1,860 QUINELLA 9-12 ¥2,380
PLACE No.12 ¥450 QUINELLA PLACE 9-12 ¥930 EXACTA 12-9 ¥6,010
No.9 ¥160 7-12 ¥4,610 TRIO 7-9-12 ¥16,710
No.7 ¥600 7-9 ¥1,550 TRIFECTA 12-9-7 ¥100,590


  1. 1.Fierement (JPN), bay, colt, 3-year-old
    Deep Impact / Lune d’Or (Green Tune)
    Owner: Sunday Racing Co., Ltd. Breeder: Northern Racing  
    Trainer: Takahisa Tezuka Jockey: Christophe Lemaire  
    4 Starts, 3 Wins    
    Added money: ¥ 147,482,000 Career earnings: ¥ 178,859,000  

  2. 2.Etario (JPN), dark bay or brown, colt, 3-year-old
    Stay Gold / Hot Cha Cha (Cactus Ridge)
    Owner: G Riviere·Racing Co., Ltd. Breeder: Northern Farm
    Trainer: Yasuo Tomomichi Jockey: Mirco Demuro

  3. 3.You Can Smile (JPN), bay, colt, 3-year-old
    King Kamehameha / Mood Indigo (Dance in the Dark)
    Owner: Kaneko Makoto Holdings Co., Ltd. Breeder: Kaneko Makoto Holdings Inc.
    Trainer: Yasuo Tomomichi Jockey: Yutaka Take
Fractional time (sec./furlong): 12.8 - 11.9 - 12.5 - 12.9 - 12.6 - 12.4 - 13.3 - 13.0 - 12.8 - 12.7 - 12.8 - 12.2 - 12.2 - 10.7 - 11.3
  Last 4 furlongs: 46.4 Last 3 furlongs: 34.2

Positions at each corner: 1st corner 4,8(5,11)(6,10)(1,12)7,9,13(14,3)-(16,18)17-2-15
  2nd corner 4,8(5,11)(6,10)(1,12)(7,9)(13,3)14(16,18)17-2-15
  3rd corner (2nd lap) 4,8(5,11)(6,12,10)(1,9)(7,3)(14,13)(16,18)17,2,15
  4th corner (2nd lap) (*4,8)(11,10)5(6,12,9)3(1,7)(13,18)(14,16)17,2,15

Note1: Underlined bold number indicates the winning horse.
Note2: Horse numbers are indicated in the order of their positions at each corner, with the first position listed first. Two or more horses inside the same parentheses indicate that they were positioned side by side. Hyphens between the horse numbers indicate that there is distance between the former and the latter. The asterisk indicates a slight lead.

* Kikuka Sho (Japanese St. Leger) (G1)
The history of Kikuka Sho, the Japanese St. Leger and the last leg of the Triple Crown race for three-year-old colts and fillies, dates back to 1938—a year after Japan’s 11 racing clubs integrated into one organization named Nihon Keiba Kai (forerunner of the JRA). Initially called “Kyoto Norin-sho Shoten Yonsai Yobiuma Kyoso”, the race was renamed to Kikuka Sho in 1948. The race distance, however, has not changed since the first running, except in 1979 when the race was held at Hanshin Racecourse during Kyoto’s stand renovation. The Kikuka Sho features three-year-olds, most of who have grown dramatically since the Tokyo Yushun (Japanese Derby, G1, 2,400m) held five months before, prior to their summer break. The Kikuka Sho winners have both the speed and the stamina to prove their caliber as the potential breeding stock. The last of the seven Triple Crown winners in JRA history was Orfevre (JPN, by Stay Gold) in 2011 who proceeded to prove his power against older G1 caliber in the Arima Kinen (G1, 2,500m), which led to his Horse of the Year that year. 2015 Kikuka Sho winner Kitasan Black (JPN, by Black Tide) and 2016 champion Satono Diamond (JPN, by Deep Impact) were chosen as the Horse of the Year and Best Three-Year-Old Colt, respectively, in 2016.
This year’s line-up included runners coming off trial races, St. Lite Kinen (G2, 2,200m; Sep.17)—Generale Uno who claimed his second grade-race victory in the race, 2017 Kyoto Nisai Stakes (G3, 2,000m) winner Grail (3rd) and third-place Derby finisher Cosmic Force (7th)—and Kobe Shimbun Hai (G2, 2,400m; Sep.23)—runner-up Etario who was fourth in the Derby, Radio Nikkei Sho (G3, 1,800m; Jul.1) winner Meisho Tekkon (3rd), the Satsuki Sho victor Epoca d’Oro (4th), the 2018 Kyoto Shimbun Hai (G2, 2,200m) winner Stay Foolish (5th) and 2017 Hopeful Stakes (G1, 2,000m) champion Time Flyer (6th). The field also included the Radio Nikkei Sho runner-up Fierement, Shinanogawa Tokubetsu (Allowance, 2,000m; Aug.4) winner Grandiose and Blast Onepiece who won the Niigata Daishoten (G3, 2,000m; Sep.2) against senior rivals.
Toho Jackal (JPN, by Special Week) renewed the race record and course record by 1.7 seconds to 3:01.0 seconds in 2014.

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