2020 News

November 13, 2020


Queen Elizabeth II Cup (G1) - Comments from runners' connections
Caro Bambina (mare, 5)

Yoshinori Saito, assistant trainer
“In the Niigata Himba Stakes she ran a solid race and held her ground well to the end. This week in work, she climbed the hill course nicely with another horse and covered the last furlong in 12.8 seconds. She didn’t look as good as her training partner did, but that horse can really run. This one’s footwork and movement were sufficient and there are no particular concerns about her condition. I think the venue is good for her as well. Her strong point is her stamina and I’m hoping the race will unfold in such a way that she can use that stamina to her advantage.”

Sankei Sho All Comers (G2)

Centelleo (mare, 5)

Tomokazu Takano, trainer
“With her participation in the Queen Elizabeth II Cup as a prerequisite, and of course taking the course and schedule into consideration, I decided on the Sankei Sho All Comers as the first start of her fall campaign. Even if you were to say the race panned out in her favor, you’d have to give her high marks for having topped the field in mixed company. And she really gave it her fighting best in the stretch. I have the impression that even though it’s late in her career, she has finally come in to her own. After sending her to the farm we transitioned her here and all has gone according to plan. She’s fresh. She gave us some nice work last week. To be honest, compared to last year when it didn’t feel like she was serious about her Grade 1 bid, this year it seems she runs like she’s aiming to win. I hope she’ll have a good race”


Espoir (filly, 4)

Takashi Kotaki, assistant trainer
“During her preparation for her last start, the Niigata Himba Stakes, she was returning from a layoff and still wasn’t fully switched on. But, from the week of the race she suddenly she did switch on and though she only finished second, it was a very solid race. She didn’t hurry around the turns and she blasted down the stretch. The jockey really got the best from her. And the race demonstrated that she has the ability to do well in a 2,200-meter race. Last week she worked up the hill course and clocked 52-some seconds. As usual, the sheen on her coat and her overall condition leave nothing to be desired. The last race has done her good. She has been successful at Hanshin before and Yutaka Take says he thinks the course suits her. I’m hoping we’ll see some good results.”

Loves Only You
Loves Only You

Loves Only You (filly, 4)

Yoshito Yahagi, trainer
“After Dubai was cancelled, the thing I’ve concentrated on is, of course, her muscle. She had trouble getting certain parts built up before. She really wasn’t very good in the spring. I felt she was in much better condition for her last start, the Fuchu Himba Stakes. With her, things often don’t go as they’re supposed to, so it’s a very good thing that they are going well now. She is maturing but the issue has always been trying to get a weak constitution stronger. And that’s our focus. Last week she worked on the woodchip flat course and moved well, her time was good and it was a very good effort. We focused only on the finish in her fast work on the hill this week. If you give her a 100 for her best race, the Yushun Himba (Japanese Oaks), she’s now able to go from an 85 to a 90. With the remaining few days to the race, I’m doing my best to get her there.”

Osaka Hai (G1)
Lucky Lilac

Lucky Lilac (mare, 5)

Mikio Matsunaga, trainer
“After the Takarazuka Kinen she was in good shape so I decided to race her in the Sapporo Kinen and, despite the long haul to the venue and all, she really tried hard, as she does. She returned to Ritto about a month again and has gotten a lot of work. She looked good this week too. That was no doubt due to her having a hard workout on the flat last week and moving well. We pushed her hard and upping the pitch really helped. Christophe Lemaire rode her for final fine-tuning this week on the flat with her overtaking two horses ahead of her so he could get a good feel for her. The horses ahead were faster than I’d expected so her time was pretty fast but she didn’t overdo it. This time we’re really looking for good results so I want a jockey that can bring out her best. The change in riders does not suggest at all that her performances before were lacking. She’s not bad at Hanshin. She runs solidly. But I do want to have a fast track so she can give us her best.”

Lune Rouge
Lune Rouge

Lune Rouge (mare, 5)

Takashi Saito, trainer
“She had a good run in the Nakayama Himba Stakes over sloppy going, but in her last race, the Tanabata Sho, the heavy ground pulled her down. She has raced at Fukushima twice and done poorly both times, so I think the small track just makes things too busy for her. She went to the farm for refreshment, then returned with this race as our target. This time, she didn’t stiffen up like before so she was able to get a lot of work in. I think she’ll be in good shape for the race. Racing very well-balanced is her strong point and I think the shape of the Hanshin 2,200 meters will suit her. It’s a strong lineup so I’m hoping she’ll take her cue from the others and it’s the first Grade 1 for the jockey as well. I think she’ll do well if she can run her own race and give it her all.”

Miss New York (filly, 3)

Haruki Sugiyama, trainer
“In the Shuka Sho, just at the crucial point, she lost ground and that hurt a lot. If she’d been able to have a smoother trip I think she’d have been able to close the gap. Still, she did give it her all in the final stage. She went to the farm for a bit after that and, since she had peaked for the Shuka Sho, and there being only a short time between races, we’ve taken care to maintain her condition. She worked hard in last week’s fast work and all is coming along well. She gets stronger with each race and even though she’ll be up against older horses, she’ll have a weight advantage. I’m looking forward to seeing how well she can do.”

Sapporo Kinen (G2)

Normcore (mare, 5)

Kiyoshi Hagiwara, trainer
“She worked alone this week and moved very well. I’d wanted her to be a bit more light-footed than she was last Saturday, so that’s what I was looking for this week. Her Sapporo Kinen run was a very good one and things have all gone well since. It’s been two years since she raced over 2,200 meters but I don’t have any worries about the distance. And, as for it being her first time at Hanshin, we won’t know how she’ll do until she tries it. I think she should be able to race at any venue. Normcore has a lot of racing experience so I expect she’ll do well. Whatever the ground is like, she’ll run so that doesn’t worry me at all. I’ve been in constant communication with the jockey and I think all that needs to be said has been. This horse’s strong point is her speed. She did well in Sapporo and I chose this race as a continuation to that. I’d like to see a performance like Sapporo once again.”

Kansai Telecasting Corp. Sho Rose Stakes (Shuka Sho Trial) (G2)
Ria Amelia

Ria Amelia (filly, 3)

Teruhiko Saruhashi, assistant trainer
“She was in good shape for the Shuka Sho but then just stopped going down the stretch. I guess it was the ground. She left the gate and didn’t take off like she had in the Rose Stakes, so I think it may be a mental thing. Her training has gone well. Last week, she weighed 490 kg on Wednesday, so she’s back up to weight. And she doesn’t seem to be tired at all. On Nov. 5 we let her rip over the woodchip flat course and things went as planned. The conditions this time don’t particularly give me cause for concern. I think everything is within her ability. But, more importantly, she gets a fast track. She hasn’t gotten good results on softer ground. Then there is her mental outlook, that is the only worry. She surely can do better. It’s just a matter of her getting more on her game.”

Rosa Glauca
Rosa Glauca

Rosa Glauca (mare, 5)

Tomohito Ozeki, trainer
“In the Niigata Himba Stakes, I’d wanted her to travel from a bit better position, but she just didn’t have enough coming away from the gate. Still, even though she went wide she ran solidly to the end and she looks to be back on her game. She came out of her last race well and there aren’t many races that are perfect for her distance-wise, so I decided to come here and take on a Grade 1 as a challenge. She’s eating well and has filled out so there’s no problem with her condition. Looking at her last race, I think the Sapporo Nikkei Open and the Diamond Stakes just unfolded in a way that really worked against her. I think she’s still improving and she’s looking really nice now, which is a big plus.”

Ireland Trophy Fuchu Himba Stakes (G2)

Salacia (mare, 5)

Manabu Ikezoe, trainer
“In the Kokura Nikkei Open, she was slow out of the gate and couldn’t get sent forward, but still showed us some great footwork. In the Fuchu HImba Stakes I was worried about the ground but she was able to race where it was good. Even if it’s soft, if it’s not too rough, she’ll be OK. After that we gave her a lot of care for about a week, then picked up the pace. She never went off her feed and things went as planned. Last week she looked very good in work and the rider said her breathing was excellent. She’s going in to the race in good shape. I think rather than holding back and advancing at the final turn, it’ll be better to focus on keeping her running in a nice rhythm and that will carry over into the results.”

Satono Garnet
Satono Garnet

Satono Garnet (mare, 5)

Shigeki Miyauchi, assistant trainer
“She did well even up against male horses in the Summer 2,000 Series and I think she really tried her best. She went to the farm after the Niigata Kinen and returned to the training center on Oct. 21. It’s what usually happens, but whenever she gets back to Ritto she goes off her feed a bit for a while. But she started eating again from about the end of October and is looking more filled out. Her weight is at about 450 kg. On Nov. 4 she worked with another horse on the woodchip flat. It was a 2-year-old, so naturally this horse beat that one to the finish. And, as planned, we were able to give her a hard workout last week. Hanshin doesn’t bother me and with her running style, the inner course shouldn’t be a problem either. I’d like there to be a strong pacesetter to keep things moving at a good clip.”

Shadow Diva
Shadow Diva

Shadow Diva (filly, 4)

Hideyuki Ohara, assistant trainer
“She’s usually not good over a heavy track but she gained ground well in the stretch in her last start, the Fuchu Himba Stakes. She wasn’t able to catch the winner but the difference was only the difference in ground covered. When she ships she always loses about 10 kg. So, with that in mind, we took her to Ritto on Oct. 31. She got a good time in fast work last week and wasn’t straining herself at all. It was a nice piece of work. I think her best distance is 1,800-2,000 meters but I think she can handle 2,200 meters on the inner course. In the last race and the race before that, jockey Hiroyuki Uchida did a good job of bringing out her best. She can do well if her tenacity comes into play in the race.”

Soft Fruit (filly, 3)

Kunihide Matsuda, trainer
“She’d taken a while to get out of the three-win class and I was looking forward to her first Grade 1. She couldn’t get away from the gate quickly in the Shuka Sho. I had hoped she’d get a better position than she did. So, running from the rear was tough over the inner 2,000 meters. The Shuka Sho was a tough race so I kept that in mind in her preparations for here. Things have gone well. Earlier, I’d had the usual worries with eating that you have with fillies, but now she’s good. There are no big weight changes. On Nov. 10 in fast work I put her training partner out in front so this one wouldn’t go too fast and it was a good workout. The extra distance will be a plus this time, though 2,400 meters would have been even better. I’m hoping she’ll make the most of her 2 kg advantage over the older horses. She has a sharp turn of foot, so I’m expecting a good race. And I’m looking for the Triple Crown jockey to bring out her best.

Something Just
Something Just

Something Just (filly, 4)

Kunihide Matsuda, trainer
“The going was pretty bad in the Fuchu Himba Stakes and everyone coming around the final turn was feeling it. Everyone but the frontrunner went wide in the stretch, but this one moved in and really turned on the power. I don’t think it was a bad race at all. Unlike most of her other races, she came out of the last one and the one before that well, so the transition to getting her ready for this race went smoothly. Her back and hindquarters have gotten stronger and she’s able to handle a lot more training. On Nov. 4 she breezed alone and moved powerfully and looked to be having fun. Ideally, the race would be over the outer course, because she can come up through narrow places. But Kohei Matsuyama knows her well so I think he’ll do a good job of getting everything he can out of her.”

Uranus Charm
Uranus Charm

Uranus Charm (mare, 5)

Hideyuki Ohara, assistant trainer
“She’d been looking good in trackwork before her run in the Niigata Himba Stakes. Normally she’s not good over a heavy track like it was, but it wasn’t so much that this time she was. It was because Takeshi Yokoyama took her inside where the ground was good and she was able to run well and get good results. We’ve kept her at Ritto not because she’s particularly bad shipping but because she’s been sharing the stable there with Shadow Diva so we kept her there like last year. Arata Saito has been riding her in work since she got to Ritto and she’s looking good. She doesn’t have a sharp turn of foot but she can run at a good speed for a long time, so if she’s asked to move early she should be able to handle it. She has gotten good results at this distance so I’m hoping she’ll be able to show her strengths.”

Win Marilyn
Win Marilyn

Win Marilyn (filly, 3)

Takahisa Tezuka, trainer
“After the Shuka Sho, we had three full weeks between races. But I still didn’t want to push her too much in work. She worked with a partner this week and though her time wasn’t very good, she did line up with the other horse in the end, as I’d instructed. For the Shuka Sho we had to ship her in and she was returning from time off and was excitable before the race. The pace was fast and she used up a lot going for position from an outside gate. Luckily, there was no damage from the race. She returned to the training center and started training immediately. I think she was able to let off some steam with her last race and she’ll be calmer. She’ll also have improved physically. She listens to the rider very well, but she still is young and excitable. It’s her first time at Hanshin but I think it’ll suit her. I’m hoping she’ll travel better on her second trip west. I think the distance is perfect for her. Takeshi Yokoyama says he wants a fast track.”

Win Mighty
Win Mighty

Win Mighty (filly, 3)

Tadao Igarashi, trainer
“In the Shuka Sho she drew an odd number gate to the inside and, as I’d been afraid, she wouldn’t stay calm in the gate. So, her position was poor and she ran over poor ground on the inside. It was a difficult race all around. She’s had gate practice after that and has no problem when it’s only practice. She does improve with a sharpener and I do think she had improved for her last race but she usually does her best in about the third race after returning from time off. She recovered very quickly from her last race and is back up to about where she was looking good in the Japanese Oaks. It’s the same course this time as she had for the Wasurenagusa Sho last year, so that’s good. She’ll be in a better position than she was for the Shuka Sho, so if her start is decent and she runs her own race, I think she can rally.”


Sources: Keiba Book, Netkeiba, Sports Nippon, Sankei Sports, Daily Sports

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