2018 News

December 16, 2018


Admire Mars Pulls Away Strongly to Capture 70th Asahi Hai Futurity Stakes
Asahi Hai Futurity Stakes (G1)

Asahi Hai Futurity Stakes (G1)

Second favorite and undefeated Admire Mars claimed this year’s Asahi Hai Futurity Stakes by a two-length margin and stretched his winning streak to four. Breaking his maiden in his debut start in June, the colt marked an open-class win in the Chukyo Nisai Stakes a month later and went on to claim the G2 Daily Hai Nisai Stakes in October, all at the mile distance. This win marks trainer Yasuo Tomomichi’s 10th JRA-G1 win following his Tokyo Yushun (Japanese Derby) victory earlier this year with Wagnerian. For jockey Mirco Demuro, this is his fourth Asahi Hai Futurity Stakes victory while the others were with Grand Prix Boss (2010), Logotype (2012) and Leontes (2015), and is now tied with the most Asahi Hai Futurity Stakes titles. This also comes as his 27th overall JRA-G1 victory following his most recent G1 triumph in the Champions Cup with Le Vent Se Leve two weeks earlier.

The race unfolded with It’s Cool shooting to the front to set the pace while Admire Mars was settled in third a few lengths behind the race favorite Gran Alegria in second through the early going. Admire Mars made a strong bid while shifting outside the filly at the final turn and quickly stole the lead from the two 300 meters out. Fiercely trying to shake off the stubborn race favorite inside of him on the rails, the Daiwa Major colt found another gear in the last half-furlong and pulled away with good speed to secure a two-length win.

“Just as he did in his last start, he made a clean break today. It was our plan to keep our eyes on Gran Alegria and everything went smoothly. He showed a terrific turn of foot. He’s a smart colt and hates to lose so I’m looking forward to seeing how he improves next season,” commented Mirco Demuro after the race.

Breaking from the innermost stall, ninth favorite Kurino Gaudi ran the rails in fourth to fifth, chased the eventual winner into the lane and displayed a strong drive up the stretch hill. Although no match for the winner, the longshot caught Gran Alegria in the last 50 meters for the runner-up seat.

The only female runner in the field, Gran Alegria was voted as heavy favorite in hopes of becoming the first filly to capture the title in 38 years. The Deep Impact filly broke smoothly, chased the pace in second, stubbornly disputed for the lead in mid-stretch but tired in the final strides and was caught by Kurino Gaudi to finish a half-length third.

Other Horses:
4th: (14) Fantasist—traveled in mid pack, quickened in last 200m, never threatened top 3 finishers
5th: (8) Deep Diver—raced behind eventual winner, met traffic at final corner, showed effort thereafter
6th: (15) Emeral Fight—trailed in rear, showed belated charge, timed fastest over last 3 furlongs
7th: (3) Aster Pegasus—settled along rails in mid-division, failed to respond
8th: (10) Girasol—hugged rails in mid-pack, switched to outside at early stretch, passed tired rivals
9th: (9) It’s Cool—set pace, gradually dropped back after 400m pole
10th: (5) Meiner Surpass—took economic trip near rear, lacked needed kick
11th: (12) Copano Martin—raced towards rear, even paced
12th: (4) De Gaulle—saved ground in mid-group, never fired at straight
13th: (11) Cadence Call—was off slow, traveled 3-wide in rear pack, faded after entering lane
14th: (7) Salt Ibuki—ran near rear, unable to reach contention
15th: (13) Nihonpiro Henson—broke poorly, soon advanced to mid-division, no factor at stretch

2-year-old Colts & Fillies, 1,600 meters (about 8 furlongs), turf, right-handed
Sunday, December 16, 2018   Hanshin Racecourse        11th Race    Post time: 15:40
Total prize money: ¥ 152,200,000 (about US$ 1,384,000 <US$1=¥110>)
2-y-o: 55kg (about 121 lbs), 1 kg allowance for Fillies, 3 kg allowance for Southern Hemisphere-bred born in 2016
Safety factor: 18 runners

FP BK PP Horse Sex
1 4 6 Admire Mars
C2 55.0 Daiwa Major
Via Medici
M. Demuro
Y. Tomomichi
Riichi Kondo
Northern Farm
2 1 1 Kurino Gaudi
C2 55.0 Screen Hero
Kurino Billionaire
Y. Fujioka
N. Fujisawa
Hiroharu Kurimoto
Hiroharu Kurimoto
3 2 2 Gran Alegria
F2 54.0 Deep Impact
C. Lemaire
K. Fujisawa
Sunday Racing Co., Ltd.
Northern Farm
4 8 14 Fantasist
C2 55.0 Lord Kanaloa
Deep in Ask
Y. Take
T. Umeda
Toshihiro Hirosaki
Toshihiro Hirosaki
5 5 8 Deep Diver
C2 55.0 Black Tide
Y. Kawada
R. Okubo
North Hills Co., Ltd.
Hirayama Bokujo
6 8 15 Emeral Fight
C2 55.0 Kurofune
Setouchi Solar
W. Buick
I. Aizawa
Tsutomu Takahashi
Tsutomu Takahashi
7 2 3 Aster Pegasus
C2 55.0 Giant’s Causeway
R Heat Lightning
Y. Fukunaga
K. Nakatake
Hisae Kato
Stonestreet Thoroughbred Holdings LLC
8 6 10 Girasol
C2 55.0 Matsurida Gogh
Hana Ichirin
Y. Iwata
T. Kayo
Einoshin Abe
Einoshin Abe
9 5 9 It’s Cool
C2 55.0 Aldebaran
Tachyon Maker
D. Matsuda
H. Take
Yutaka Kukita
Japan Racing Association
10 3 5 Meiner Surpass
C2 55.0 I’ll Have Another
Meine Aktis
Y. Tannai
N. Takagi
K. Thoroughbred Club Ruffian
Big Red Farm
11 7 12 Copano Martin
C2 55.0 Screen Hero
Love Dylan
R. Sakai
A. Murayama
Sachiaki Kobayashi
Tanioka Stud
12 3 4 De Gaulle
C2 55.0 Sakura President
A. Tsumura
Y. Kuroiwa
Kanayama Holdings Co., Ltd.
Hoyo Farm
13 6 11 Cadence Call
C2 55.0 Lord Kanaloa
C. Demuro
T. Yasuda
Sunday Racing Co., Ltd.
Northern Farm
14 4 7 Salt Ibuki
C2 55.0 Belshazzar
Aino Kokoro
H. Shii
K. Kihara
Toshio Sugiura
Nozaka Bokujo
15 7 13 Nihonpiro Henson
C2 55.0 Rulership
Nihonpillow Abumi
S. Hamanaka
A. Adachi
Hyakutaro Kobayashi
Hyakutaro Kobayashi
FP=Final Position / BK=Bracket Number / PP=Post Position / 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: ¥ 22,787,755,400 ATTENDANCE: 24,820

PAY-OFF (for ¥100)
WIN No.6 ¥460 BRACKET QUINELLA 1-4 ¥10,060 QUINELLA 1-6 ¥9,710
PLACE No.6 ¥130 QUINELLA PLACE 1-6 ¥1,560 EXACTA 6-1 ¥14,240
No.1 ¥490 2-6 ¥180 TRIO 1-2-6 ¥3,340
No.2 ¥110 1-2 ¥1,080 TRIFECTA 6-1-2 ¥45,180
  1. 1.Admire Mars (JPN), chestnut, colt, 2-year-old
    Daiwa Major / Via Medici (Medicean)
    Owner: Riichi Kondo Breeder: Northern Farm
    Trainer: Yasuo Tomomichi Jockey: Mirco Demuro
    4 Starts, 4 Wins  
    Added money: ¥ 71,064,000 Career earnings: ¥ 132,547,000

  2. 2.Kurino Gaudi (JPN), chestnut, colt, 2-year-old
    Screen Hero / Kurino Billionaire (Diablo)
    Owner: Hiroharu Kurimoto Breeder: Hiroharu Kurimoto
    Trainer: Norio Fujisawa Jockey: Yusuke Fujioka

  3. 3.Gran Alegria (JPN), bay, filly, 2-year-old
    Deep Impact / Tapitsfly (Tapit)
    Owner: Sunday Racing Co., Ltd. Breeder: Northern Farm
    Trainer: Kazuo Fujisawa Jockey: Christophe Lemaire
Fractional time (sec./furlong): 12.7 - 10.9 - 11.7 - 12.4 - 11.8 - 11.3 - 11.2 - 11.9
Last 4 furlongs: 46.2          Last 3 furlongs: 34.4

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

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.


* Asahi Hai Futurity Stakes (G1)

Races for two-year-olds were held for the first time in 1946 at Tokyo. As the number of contenders increased, championship races—the Asahi Hai Sansai Stakes (predecessor to the Asahi Hai Futurity Stakes) and the Hanshin Sansai Stakes (predecessor to the Hanshin Juvenile Fillies)—which determined the top two-year-olds of the season in eastern and western Japan, respectively, were established in 1949. In conjunction with the new grading system implemented, the two races were designated G1 status in 1984.
In 1991, the two races were divided by gender into two separate G1 events; the Hanshin Sansai Himba Stakes for two-year-old fillies and the Asahi Hai Sansai Stakes for two-year-old colts and geldings, then renamed “Hanshin Juvenile Fillies” and “Asahi Hai Futurity Stakes”, respectively, in 2001. Since 2004, the Asahi Hai Futurity Stakes has been limited to non-gelded colts and fillies. The race, which started off as a 1,100-meter sprint, was extended to 1,200 meters in 1959 and again to 1,600 meters in 1962. In 2010, the race was opened to foreign runners. Due to the restructured racing program for two-year-olds, the venue was transferred from Nakayama to Hanshin Racecourse, the same location as the Hanshin Juvenile Fillies, in 2014.
One of the featured runners this year and aiming to become the first female winner of the race since 1980 was heavily favored Gran Alegria who had come off her Saudi Arabia Royal Cup (G3, 1,600m; Oct.6) victory against male runners. The strong line-up also included four other graded winners; Aster Pegasus, who claimed the Hakodate Nisai Stakes (G3, 1,200m; Jul.22) and was a fifth in his latest Keio Hai Nisai Stakes (G2, 1,400m; Nov.3) start; Cadence Call who landed his second win in the Niigata Nisai Stakes (G3, 1,600m; Aug.26); Fantasist and Admire Mars, both boasting three wins out of the same starts which include wins in the the Keio Hai Nisai Stakes and the Daily Hai Nisai Stakes (G2, 1,600m; Nov.10), respectively. Other notable contenders were Saudi Arabia Royal Cup runner-up De Gaulle, the Kikyo Stakes (1,400m; Sep.22) victor It's Cool and, Nihonpiro Henson and Meiner Surpass who came off their wins in the Momiji Stakes (1,400m; Oct.13) and the Kimmokusei Tokubetsu (1,800m; Nov.4), respectively.
Last year’s victor Danon Premium (JPN, by Deep Impact) renewed the race record to 1:33.3.

Asahi Hai Futurity Stakes related contents