2018 News

November 4, 2018


Graceful Leap Secures Narrow Victory in JBC Sprint
JBC Sprint (L)

JBC Sprint (L)

Fourth favorite Graceful Leap claimed this year’s JBC Sprint, registering his 12th win, all on dirt over distances between 1,200 and 1,400 meters—notable victories include the 2016 Summer Champion, 2017 Korea Sprint, 2018 Hyogo Gold Trophy and Tokyo Sprint. It was the first JBC Sprint title for both trainer Shinsuke Hashiguchi and jockey Christophe Lemaire.

Graceful Leap stayed close to the pace in fourth, increased his speed as two of the foes in front were quick to tire before the final turn. The eight-year-old chestnut closed in on the leader, dueled and crossed the wire a neck in front for the title.

“We were able to secure a perfect spot behind Take (on Matera Sky) and from there the horse gave a great effort,” commented Christophe Lemaire.

Race favorite Matera Sky immediately rushed for the lead from a smooth break and made the pace. The son of Speightstown led along the rails and sustained his bid up to the final strides where he was pinned down by the eventual winner and missed by a neck in second.

Fifth choice Kitasan Mikazuki, who had beaten both the winner and the race favorite in his previous start, was rated near the rails in mid-field and exerted an impressive turn of speed to reach contention but unable to reach the top two who had already gained a comfortable lead from the rest of the field.

Other Horses:
4th: (14) Moanin—raced 3-wide toward rear, showed impressive late charge in last 100m
5th: (13) Let’s Go Donki—settled 4th from rear, accelerated in stretch, rallied well for 4th, outrun in final strides
6th: (3) King’s Guard—raced on rails near rear, angled out at last turn, struggled for room, accelerated belatedly
7th: (15) T O Helios—broke sharply, raced in mid-division, remained factor up to mid-stretch, showed little in last half furlong
8th: (2) Nishiken Mononofu—hugged rails 5th from rear, accelerated but lacked closing speed in last half furlong
9th: (7) Win Mut—broke well, driven in backstretch, stalked pace, entered straight in 3rd, tired
10th: (12) Love Bullet—broke sharply, took 4-wide trip throughout, 4th to hit stretch, weakened
11th: (1) Nero—hugged rails in mid-division, never reached contention
12th: (16) Nobo Baccara—trailed in rear, made bid after turning widest, third fastest last 3 furlongs
13th: (11) Ensemble Life—raced 2nd from rear, unable to reach contention
14th: (9) Seiun Kosei—mid-division, edged forward traveling 3-wide, even paced.
15th: (8) Nac Venus—rated 6th from front, hugged rails turning the corners, faded in last 200m
16th: (10) Nobu Wild—broke well, traveled wide in 3rd, failed to respond in stretch

3-year-old & up, 1,200 meters (about 6 furlongs), dirt, right-handed
Sunday, November 4, 2018    Kyoto Racecourse       10th Race        Post time: 15:01
Total prize money: ¥ 152,200,000 (about US$ 1,384,000 <US$1= ¥110>)
3-y-o: 56kg (about 124 lbs), 4-y-o & up: 57kg (about 126 lbs), 2kg allowance for Fillies & Mares,
1kg allowance for Southern Hemisphere-bred born in 2015
Safety factor: 16 runners

FP BK PP Horse Sex
1 3 6 Graceful Leap
H8 57.0 Gold Allure
Rabbit Foot
C. Lemaire
S. Hashiguchi
Shinji Maeda
North Hills Co,. Ltd.
2 3 5 Matera Sky
C4 57.0 Speightstown
Y. Take
H. Mori
Tsuyoshi Ono
Lynch Bages LTD
3 2 4 Kitasan Mikazuki
H8 57.0 King Halo
Kitasan Jewelry
T. Mori
K. Sato
Ono Shoji
Ono Shoji
4 7 14
H6 57.0 Henny Hughes
C. Demuro
S. Ishizaka
Yukio Baba
Empire Equines LLC
5 7 13 Let's Go Donki
M6 55.0 King Kamehameha
Y. Iwata
T. Umeda
Hirosaki Toshihiro HD Co., Ltd.
Shimizu Bokujo
6 2 3 King's Guard
H7 57.0 Sinister Minister
Kings Berry
Y. Fujioka
R. Terashima
Nisshin B.
Nisshin Farm
7 8 15 T O Helios
H6 57.0 Fusaichi Pegasus
Reagle Mary
S. Hamanaka
T. Umeda
Tomoya Ozasa
Yanagawa Stud LTD.
8 1 2
Nishiken Mononofu
H7 57.0 Meisho Bowler
Green Hill Komachi
N. Yokoyama
Y. Shono
Tsuru Nishimori
Tsuneo Yagi
9 4 7 Win Mut
H5 57.0 Roses in May
Cosmo Valenti
H. Uchida
T. Kayo
Win Co., Ltd.
Cosmo View Farm
10 6 12 Love Bullet
H7 57.0 Nobo Jack
Revival Girl
T. Yamamoto
I. Sugawara
Ichiro Uchiyama
Yuji Tsushima
11 1 1 Nero
H7 57.0 Johannesburg
Nishino Takarazuka
K. Tosaki
H. Mori
Shigeyuki Nishiyama
Nishiyama Stud
12 8 16 Nobo Baccara
H6 57.0 Admire Aura
Nobo Kiss
N. Mikamoto
S. Temma
LS. M Co., Ltd.
LS. M Co., Ltd.
13 6 11
Ensemble Life
H5 57.0 Adjudicating
Gaily Angel
K. Shigeta
S. Kokubo
Blue Equus Co., Ltd.
Hiroaki Nakamura
14 5 9 Seiun Kosei
H5 57.0 Admire Moon
K. Ikezoe
H. Uehara
Shigeyuki Nishiyama
Sakurai Bokujo
15 4 8 Nac Venus
M5 55.0 Daiwa Major
Ready to Please
T. Ono
H. Sugiura
Kinya Komatsu
Shadai Farm
16 5 10 Nobu Wild
H6 57.0 Vermilion
Koei Best
S. Sakai
S. Kokubo
Nobuteru Maeda
Kiyomitsu Jochi
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.

WINNING TIME: 1:10.4 GOING: Standard WEATHER: Cloudy

PAY-OFF (for ¥100)
WIN No.6 ¥1,200 BRACKET QUINELLA 3-3 ¥1,300 QUINELLA 5-6 ¥1,260
PLACE No.6 ¥310 QUINELLA PLACE 5-6 ¥520 EXACTA 6-5 ¥3,770
No.5 ¥130 4-6 ¥1,540 TRIO 4-5-6 ¥3,520
No.4 ¥290 4-5 ¥580 TRIFECTA 6-5-4 ¥23,510


  1. 1.Graceful Leap (JPN), chestnut, horse, 8-year-old
    Gold Allure / Rabbit Foot (Seeking the Gold)
    Owner: Shinji Maeda Breeder: North Hills Co,. Ltd.  
    Trainer: Shinsuke Hashiguchi Jockey: Christophe Lemaire  
    44 Starts, 12 Wins    
    Added money: ¥ 73,360,000 Career earnings: ¥ 373,893,100  

  2. 2.Matera Sky (USA), chestnut, colt, 4-year-old
    Speightstown / Mostaqeleh (Rahy)
    Owner: Tsuyoshi Ono Breeder: Lynch Bages LTD
    Trainer: Hideyuki Mori Jockey: Yutaka Take

  3. 3.Kitasan Mikazuki (JPN), bay, horse, 8-year-old
    King Halo / Kitasan Jewelry (Sakura Bakushin O)
    Owner: Ono Shoji Breeder: Ono Shoji
    Trainer: Kenji Sato Jockey: Taito Mori
Fractional time (sec./furlong): 12.1 - 10.6 - 11.0 - 11.6 - 12.1 - 13.0
  Last 4 furlongs: 47.7 Last 3 furlongs: 36.7

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

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.

* JBC Sprint (L)
The Japan Breeding farms’ Cup (JBC) was established in 2001, following the idea of the two-day racing festival held by the Breeders’ Cup in the U.S., by the JBC Committee, mainly composed of members of horse breeding organizations and the National Association of Racing (NAR), to promote dirt racing in Japan. While nearly 90% of graded races at JRA are raced on turf, most of the graded races on dirt are held by NAR since JRA and NAR set up a joint racing program in 1995 and the JBC serves as an important dirt championship event for both JRA and NAR dirt horses. Seven NAR tracks have served as host sites of the JBC Day, initially consisting of two races, the JBC Classic and the JBC Sprint, with the JBC Ladies’ Classic added in the program in 2011. In order to further disseminate the attractiveness of JBC and dirt races to a broader group of fans, the event was hosted by JRA for the first time this year and held at Kyoto Racecourse.

The JBC Sprint is the only dirt event held at the highest level to determine the dirt sprint champion in Japan. Past winners including two-time JRA Award Best Dirt Horse winner Espoir City are listed as below:

Year Venue Distance Winner Affiliation
2001 Oi (Tokyo) dirt, 1,200m Nobo Jack (USA, C4, by French Deputy) JRA
2002 Morioka (Iwate) dirt, 1,200m Sterling Rose (JPN, H5, by Afleet) JRA
2003 Oi (Tokyo) dirt, 1,190m South Vigorous (USA, H7, by End Sweep) JRA
2004 Oi (Tokyo) dirt, 1,200m Meiner Select (JPN, H5, by Forty Niner) JRA
2005 Nagoya (Aichi) dirt, 1,400m Blue Concorde (JPN, H5, by Fusaichi Concorde) JRA
2006* Kawasaki (Kanagawa) dirt, 1,600m Blue Concorde (JPN, H6, by Fusaichi Concorde) JRA
2007 Oi (Tokyo) dirt, 1,200m Fujino Wave (JPN, H5, by Black Tie Affair) NAR (Oi)
2008 Sonoda (Hyogo) dirt, 1,400m Bamboo Ere (JPN, H5, by Afleet) JRA
2009 Nagoya (Aichi) dirt, 1,400m Suni (USA, C3, by Soto) JRA
2010 Funabashi (Chiba) dirt, 1,000m Summer Wind (JPN, H5, by Taiki Shuttle) JRA
2011 Oi (Tokyo) dirt, 1,200m Suni (USA, H5, by Soto) JRA
2012 Kawasaki (Kanagawa) dirt, 1,400m Taisei Legend (JPN, H5, by King Kamehameha) JRA
2013 Kanazawa (Ishikawa) dirt, 1,400m Espoir City (JPN, H8, by Gold Allure) JRA
2014 Morioka (Iwate) dirt, 1,200m Dream Valentino (JPN, H7, by Roses in May) JRA
2015 Oi (Tokyo) dirt, 1,200m Corin Berry (JPN, F4, by South Vigorous) JRA
2016 Kawasaki (Kanagawa) dirt, 1,400m Danon Legend (USA, H6, by Macho Uno) JRA
2017 Oi (Tokyo) dirt, 1,200m Nishiken Mononofu (JPN, H6, by Meisho Bowler) JRA

*The race was held under the name of “JBC Mile” in 2006

The Tokyo Hai (dirt, 1,200m; Oct.10), which is the JBC Sprint trial, was won by Kitasan Mikazuki. Nero, winner of two consecutive Keihan Hai (G3, 1,200m) titles came in second with Graceful Leap, who has four major titles on dirt between 1,200m and 1,400m, in third. Last year’s JBC Sprint champion Nishiken Mononofu came off a fourth-place finish in the Hokkaido Sprint Cup (dirt, 1,200m; Jun.7). Contenders coming off the Sprinters Stakes (G1, 1,200m; Sep.30) were 2015 Oka Sho (Japanese 1000 Guineas, G1, 1,600m) winner Let’s Go Donki, this year’s Keeneland Cup (G3, 1,200m) victor Nac Venus and 2017 Takamatsunomiya Kinen (G1, 1,200m) champion Seiun Kosei who had finished fifth, seventh and 12th, respectively. The field also included this year’s Procyon Stakes (G3, dirt, 1,400m) winner Matera Sky and 2016 February Stakes (G1, dirt, 1,600m) champion Moanin who came off a victory in the Korea Sprint (dirt, 1,200m; Sep.9).