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Japan Cup - Form Comments

27/11/2014

Japan Cup – Form Comments

G1 - 2400m - Turf

1

Just A Way

Ranked on top in the World’s Best Racehorse Ranking since a spectacular victory in the G1 Dubai Duty Free in March. Two wins at Tokyo in the 2013 Tenno Sho Autumn and the G1 Yasuda Kinen in June. Eighth latest in Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe (2400m). Best from 1600m to 1800m. Question mark about whether stays 2400m.

2

Ivanhowe

A power type of horse and relishes the softer track.  The firm track at Tokyo will be his question mark, but the 2400m on the left handed course is his best trip.

3

Gentildonna

The five-year-old mare aims for a third consecutive Japan Cup. Claimed the G1 Dubai Sheema Classic in March before below-par ninth in G1 Takarazuka Kinen.  Returned from summer break with a second place in the G1 Tenno Sho Autumn. Main target is to win the Japan Cup.  Depending on her physical state, the G1 Arima Kinen on 28 December will be her final career start.

4

Epiphaneia

Not finished in the first four for the first time in 11 starts when sixth in Tenno Sho Autumn last time. Last year’s Kikuka Sho winner has kept good condition and good temperament in his work of late.  Often settles around midfield.

5

Hit the Target

Winless since last year’s G2 Kyoto Daishoten. Has progressed his condition this season with fourth-place in the G1 Takarazuka Kinen and fifth in the G1 Tenno Sho Autumn on 2 November.  Races held up.

6

Harp Star

Having won the first leg of the Triple Tiara in the Oka Sho (Japanese 1000 Guineas), the filly was unable to follow-up in Japanese Oaks. Claimed the G2 Sapporo Kinen before challenging in the Arc. Given an awful lot to do at Longchamp but finished well. Has weight allowance in the Japan Cup.  Usually settles rear for a late run.

7

Up With The Birds

Last year's Horse of the Year in Canada, has an impressive late kick.  Races from rear, and the long stretch course at Tokyo should suit him.  The only question mark for him will be the distance. The best distance is likely to be 1800m.

8

Denim and Ruby

Last year’s Japan Cup runner-up and four-year-old filly showed gutsy acceleration in her first race up in the Tenno Sho Autumn. That after fifth-place in the G1 Takarazuka Kinen in June.  Looks well in her coat and is in a good condition.  Travels from rear position for a late run.

9

Isla Bonita

Top three-year-old colt and favourite in the G1 Tenno Sho Autumn last time. Gave way to Gentildonna after the duelling with her in the final strides and finished third to Spielberg.  Jockey Masayoshi Ebina who is very familiar to the colt will be back on him.  Usually races behind the lead and appreciates firm track.

10

One and Only

This year’s Japanese Derby winner was favourite in the third leg of the Japanese triple crown the Kikuka Sho but finished ninth. Travelled in good striking position but lacked the needed kick.  Trainer Kojiro Hashiguchi has confidence that the colt can compete well against older horses, and the 2400m at Tokyo should be his best trip.  Travels in rear for a late run.

11

Tosen Jordan

Winner of the 2011 Tenno Sho Autumn. Third in this race  last year.  Eight-year-old experienced a lean season this year.  Began the autumn campaign with 17th in the G1 Tenno Sho Autumn.  Races held up.

12

Tamamo Best Play

The four-year-old scored his first win in 13 starts since the G3 Kisaragi Sho February 2013 in Tancho Stakes in September.  Comes in off a second-place in the G2 Kyoto Daishoten in October.  Races in the front position.

13

Decipher

Very consistent runner from 1800m to 2000m with six wins. Grabbed first graded stakes win in the G3 Epsom Cup in June.  From four-month layoff, he fought on well and placed fourth in the G2 Mainichi Okan before disappointing 12th in the G1 Tenno Sho Autumn.  Saved for a late run.

14

Satono Shuren

The six-year-old is winless since April 2013 in a lean season overall. Showed dramatic change in Tancho Stakes at Sapporo in September when second.  Races prominently or just behind the lead.  Handles firm and softish.

15

Spielberg

Claimed third consecutive win in May Stakes in May before third in the G2 Mainichi Okan as his first race up from five-month layoff.  He scored a first graded and G1 victory in the Tenno Sho Autumn on 2 November.  Closed every stride in the stretch and caught the dueling leaders Gentildonna and Isla Bonita close home for the victory.  Races held up.

16

Fenomeno

Runner-up in the 2012 Japanese Derby and Tenno Sho Autumn. Notched his first G1 title in last year’s Tenno Sho Spring. Returned in the G2 Nikkei Sho in March from nine-month vacation due to leg problem. Notched back-to-back win in the Tenno Sho Spring in May.  Returned from another six-month lay-off in the Tenno Sho Autumn when raced rear and showed even pace in the stretch to finish 14th.  Usually races from better than midfield.

17

Uncoiled

Since third-place in the G2 Kyoto Kinen in February he has unplaced in six subsequent starts. 11th latest in the G3 Fukushima Kinen (2000m, turf) on 16 November.  Used to race forward but changed tactics and held up in recent starts.

18

Trading Leather

Basically travels in front but can set the pace.  He can handle any pace and has lots of stamina.  The firm track should suit him. 

 

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