2023 News

June 2, 2023


Yasuda Kinen (G1) - Comments from runners' connections
February Stakes (G1)
Cafe Pharoah

Cafe Pharoah (horse, 6)

Noriyuki Hori, trainer
“After his recent training, he weighed 524kg, and with the appetite he has, his condition is good with the work we’ve given him. He’s running smoothly and is well-balanced. It wasn’t because he was racing on turf that he lost last year. I want to try races with just one turn with him, and his footwork is good on softer ground, so if it rains this weekend, I’ll look forward to how he can do.”

NHK Mile Cup (G1)
Champagne Color

Champagne Color (colt, 3)

Tsuyoshi Tanaka, trainer
“The jockey (Hiroyuki Uchida) has been working the horse and says there’s no tiredness about him after his last race. He seems to keep on improving and he should be in good condition once more going into this next race, but we won’t know how he can do unless we try. The opposition will be strong, but he gets the 4kg weight advantage, and I think he can do well as a horse with a lot of guts.”

NHK Mile Cup (G1)
Danon Scorpion

Danon Scorpion (colt, 4)

Keiichiro Yasuda, assistant trainer
“It seems like he’s getting back to the condition he was in after last year’s Kyodo News Hai when he improved a lot. Things are a lot smoother with him now. We just fitted a cheekpiece on his right side in his adjustment in training so that he would run straighter. It’s best if he gets into a good rhythm in a race and is able to put a strong finish in. Wet conditions should be all right for him, and it wouldn’t be too much of a surprise if things changed for the better this time.”

Asahi Hai Futurity Stakes (G1)
Dolce More

Dolce More (colt, 3)

Naosuke Sugai, trainer
“He got into a good rhythm and made his own pace two starts ago when going off in front, but in his last race, for some reason, he wasn’t in good spirits. We’ve just eased him back into things after that last race, and haven’t overdone it with the short time between races. He is a Grade 1 winner though, and he’ll carry just 54kg this time against the older horses, so I want him to try his best.”

Tokyo Shimbun Hai (G3)
Elusive Panther

Elusive Panther (horse, 5)

Takashi Kubota, trainer
“His movement has been good in training, and he’s really alert and wants to run. We’ve been able to look to this race with him in fine condition. He was unfortunate in last year’s race, where he didn’t get to use his closing speed so well. I hope he can run on good ground.”

Kazutaka Ikeuchi, assistant trainer
“He’s quite switched on, and his times and movement have been good in recent training, so he’s in good condition. We’ve had the Yasuda Kinen in mind for him after his last race. In last year’s Yasuda Kinen, he wasn’t able to run to his best, and it‘s all about things going smoothly for him in a race. I want him to run well against the strong opposition this time.”

Asahi Hai St. Lite Kinen (Japanese St. Leger Trial) (G2)
Gaia Force

Gaia Force (colt, 4)

Haruki Sugiyama, trainer
“He did his strong work last week, and with the transportation to the track, this week he didn’t work so quickly. The jockey reports the horse to be better than at this time before his last race. It’ll be the first time in a while for the horse to race left-handed and I’m interested to see how he will go at the wide Tokyo track. He ran over a mile last time and I think he can do well again here. There are many good horses in the race, but if he runs like he did last time, things should be fine.”

Osaka Hai (G1)
Jack d'Or

Jack d'Or (horse, 5)

Kenichi Fujioka, trainer
“On his pedigree, and from what I’ve thought about him previously, a mile would seem to be good for him. It’s been quite easy to get him ready for this next race, and I think he can show his speed at a track like Tokyo. It’s important that he gets to run at his own pace and that the speed he runs at is sustainable up to the finish. I don’t think he has to lead. If things go right for him regarding these points, he has a good enough chance.”

Yutaka Take, jockey
“He’s moving well, and has been picking up speed when I’ve asked him to. I think a race like the Yasuda Kinen is good for him, even though he’s only run over 2,000 meters. As long as he runs at his own pace, any position in the race is good for him. I’m looking forward to him racing over a mile and want to get a good result.”

Nikkan Sports Sho Shinzan Kinen (G3)
Matenro Orion

Matenro Orion (colt, 4)

Mitsugu Kon, trainer
“He can be a little tense, and his character also can be difficult, but since his last race he’s been more relaxed. In the Kyoto Kinpai, he hit his head in the gate, but has recovered from that. In recent work on the woodchip course, he’s been moving well with his training partners and has looked good when finishing off his work. He’s in good condition and I hope he’ll show his best in the race this time.”

Sankei Sho Centaur Stakes (G2)
Meikei Yell

Meikei Yell (mare, 5)

Hidenori Take, trainer
“She has been moving well in training, and this last week we haven’t worried about times with her, and have made sure not to overdo things. She’s switched on, but at the same time not too tense. With race distances of 1,200 meters, she hasn’t always found good rhythm in her races, but now she’s older she doesn’t pull as much, so that helps with her. With her big stride, I think a mile is good for her. In this next race, I’m hopeful of her finding a good rhythm among the other runners, and the jockey knows her well, so I’ll rely on him to get the best out of her.”


Namur (filly, 4)

Tomokazu Takano, trainer
“She’s maintained her condition well and has gained some muscle, so she seems stronger now. Up against good male horses in the race this time, we’ll have to see how she shapes up against them. To some extent it will depend on how things work out in the race, but I want her to use all her effort and put her best challenge in here.”

Takamatsunomiya Kinen (G1)
Naran Huleg

Naran Huleg (horse, 7)

Yoshitada Munakata, trainer
“He’s been at the farm, and now has the same rotation as last year. He’s been doing steady work in training and is in good shape. It’s a strong field in the race this time, and you have to take his age into consideration, but I want him to get to run his own race and show the good footwork that he has.”

Keio Hai Spring Cup (G2)
Red Mon Reve

Red Mon Reve (colt, 4)

Masayoshi Ebina, trainer
“His training has been good, and he’s moving well enough. He runs well at Tokyo, and he showed a good turn of foot last time. I want him to try his best against the strong Yasuda Kinen horses. Hopefully the rain will stay away.”

Daisuke Tsumagari, assistant trainer
“He’s had a couple of recent workouts uphill, and it’s been easier to get him ready for this next race. It’s a high-level race this time, but he’s used to running over a mile. There shouldn’t be too much difference between him and the other runners.”

Yomiuri Milers Cup (G2)
Schnell Meister

Schnell Meister (horse, 5)

Takahisa Tezuka, trainer
“He’s had his usual break at the farm and came back to the stable on May 11. He’s a little bigger now and weighs around 500kg, but that’s all right for him. He’s better this year as he didn’t travel to Dubai, which made him tired last year. Also, as a 5-year-old, he’s more mature now. He runs well at Tokyo, so returning to the track this time makes conditions good for him, and he has a chance to win. Things to consider will be the ground and the weather before the race and on the day, as I would like him to run on good ground.”

Mile Championship (G1)

Serifos (colt, 4)

Mitsumasa Nakauchida, trainer
“He’s in good condition and has got over his trip to Dubai well. He’s more developed now and therefore a better horse. In this big race, I want him to show his best.”

Taku Fukunaga, assistant trainer
“He’s recovered from the trip to Dubai. Things have gone well with him, and he’s as you would expect of a Grade 1 horse, moving well and putting in a good workload. Training this last week puts him just right for the race. He’s won over a mile at Tokyo, and I think we can expect another good run from him here.”

Victoria Mile (G1)

Sodashi (mare, 5)

Naosuke Sugai, trainer
“There’s no change with her. She’s been running well in training with the jockey (Yuga Kawada) and the horse has just done enough. She’ll be up against strong male horses this time, but the one turn over a mile at Tokyo suits her, and I want to see the usual tough style of racing from Sodashi this time as well.”

Yuga Kawada, jockey
“There’s a good feeling about her. As there hasn’t been long between races, I’ve made sure not to overwork her in training. It’s better to have her feeling fresh. The mile at Tokyo probably suits horses that have won over longer, but she has won the Sapporo Kinen over 2,000 meters, so that’s a plus. She’s a strong horse, and I hope she can show this in the race.”

Yasuda Kinen (G1)

Songline (mare, 5)

Toru Hayashi, trainer
“She has not only kept her condition since her last race, but she also seems to have improved for it. It’s the same concept as last year with these two races, and we’re seeing the real Songline. With another strong field this time, and even after winning the Victoria Mile, I still think she’s a challenger again here. I’m hoping she can run another strong race.”

Keita Tosaki, jockey
“She’s an easy horse to ride, and she showed her power in the race last time. She’s been fine in the short time between races and has been eating well. The ground was a bit loose last time, so even with rain, things should be fine.”

Yomiuri Milers Cup (G2)
Soul Rush

Soul Rush (horse, 5)

Yuki Iwasaki, assistant trainer
“He’s improved with his training under the jockey (Kohei Matsuyama) and the horse’s responses have been good just recently, with him managing a final furlong time of 11 seconds flat. In last year’s race, he wasn’t able to show his best in the home straight, so it’s all about him getting a smooth run and showing the power that he has.”

Kohei Matsuyama, jockey
“He’s become a lot tighter over the past three weeks in training, and I have to say this last week has been the best with him, without any problems.”

Sekiya Kinen (G3)
Win Carnelian

Win Carnelian (horse, 6)

Yuichi Shikato, trainer
“There’s been no problem with him since returning from the farm, and his condition is fine leading up to the race. He’s been stretching out well in training and getting better. He ran a strong race two starts ago in the Tokyo Shimbun Hai, and using the horizon net (pacifiers) worked well and kept him settled in the gate. We’ll have to see how he handles the ground if it comes up wet. A lot of strong horses are taking on this next race, but I’m looking forward to what he might be able to do.”


Sources: Keiba Book, Net Keiba, Sports Hochi

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