Danon Premium favored in Asahi Hai Futurity

Danon Premium easily wins the Saudi Arabia Royal Cup. Pic: Japan Racing Association. Unbeaten colt Danon Premium could give trainer Mitsumasa Nakauchida his first grade one victory when he contests the Asahi Hai Futurity (G1) for 2-year-olds at Hanshin racecourse Dec. 17. One of two colts in the field by champion sire Deep Impact, Danon Premium has been relatively untroubled to win both his starts. At his most recent outing he won the Saudi Arabia Royal Cup (G3) [...]

Dubai Turf winner Vivlos favored in Queen Elizabeth II Cup

Crocosmia (right) and Vivlos meet again in the Queen Elizabeth II Cup at Kyoto. Pic: Japan Racing Association. Dubai Turf (G1) winner Vivlos seeks another grade one victory when she contests the 2,200-meter (about 1 3/8-mile) Queen Elizabeth II Cup (G1) for fillies and mares at Kyoto Nov. 12. Vivlos (Deep Impact), the winner of last year’s Shuka Sho (G1), the third leg of the fillies triple crown in Japan, went to Dubai and beat Ribchester, the subsequent [...]

Victoria Derby heads four group ones in Melbourne

It’s arrived – one of the great race days of the year, with multiple races at the top level, horses from around the world competing, and 80,000 people attending. No, it’s not the Breeders’ Cup. It’s day one of the four-day Melbourne Cup carnival at Flemington Nov. 4, and with its four group one races, two group two races and three group three encounters, to many racing fans in Australia it’s better than Cup day itself Nov. 7. The group [...]

Kitasan Black, Satono Crown head Tenno Sho (Autumn) field

Satono Crown wins the Takarazuka Kinen. Photo: Japan Racing Association.   Japanese Horse of the Year Kitasan Black looks to return to winning ways when he takes on a strong field in the 1 ¼-mile Tenno Sho (Autumn) (G1) at Tokyo racecourse Oct. 29. Kitasan Black (Black Tide) has twice won the Tenno Sho (Spring) (G1), run over two miles, and last year he also won the Japan Cup (G1). This year he won the 1 ¼-mile Osaka [...]

Aerolithe a Dominating Favorite in Shuka Sho

There’s 18 horses to choose from in the final leg of Japan’s filly Triple Crown, the $1.6 million Shuka Sho, but there’s likely to be a dominating favorite. Aerolithe (Kurofune) is set to be at short odds for the 2,000-meter (about 1 ¼ miles) classic at Kyoto. She finished fifth in the Oka Sho (G1, Japanese 1,000 Guineas) in April, but has since beaten the colts and geldings in the NHK Mile Cup (G1) despite being four wide for most [...]

Japanese Jockey Legend Yutaka Take

  At the Belmont this Saturday, some of the greatest jockeys in the world will be riding. Kent Desormeaux, John Velasquez and Javier Castellano are all known to U.S. racing fans. All 3 have had an impact on the biggest races in North America. But the most accomplished jockey on a horse at the Belmont won't be an American rider. That rider is Yutaka Take, the Japanese legend who will ride Lani, one of only 2 horses in the Belmont, [...]