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Sprinters Stakes - Form Comments

29/09/2016

G1 - 1200m – Turf

Uliuli  Full-sister to this year’s Japanese Derby winner and Arc hopeful Makahiki. Claimed the G3 CBC Sho first attempt at 1200m on turf in July 2015.  Fifth in this race last year but no better than 5th in her four starts this term.  Usually settles in rear position and has no track concern. 
Sakura Gospel  Runner-up in this race last season, then finished well behind Peniaphobia in the LONGINES Hong Kong Sprint (1200m) last December. Made just two starts in 2016, first a disappointing 17th in the G1 Takamatsunomiya Kinen (1200m), then 8th in G2 Keio Hai Spring Cup (1400m) in May.  Settles in rear position. Relishes firm track but handles softer track as well.
Satono Lupin  Winner of G3 Keihan Hai (1200m) in November 2015.  Has not made the frame in three starts this year.  Settles back and handles firm and good going.
Shuji  High-class, speedy 3yo, having won his first three starts as a juvenile, including the G3 Kokura Nisai Stakes last September.  Two unsuccessful runs at the start of his 3yo campaign, but fared better when a nose 2nd in the G3 Hakodate Sprint Stakes (1200m) in June, before 0.5L 2nd, with Joao Moreira on board, in G3 Keeneland Cup (1200m) at Sapporo on 28 August.  Usually takes the lead or sits handy.  No track worries.
Snow Dragon  The JRA’s 2014 champion sprinter Snow Dragon returned from a 15-month layoff and fought on well for 3rd in the G3 Ocean Stakes (1200m) at Nakayama in March. Five starts since, including latest when 5th in G2 Centaur Stakes (1200m) at Hanshin on 11 September.  Usually settles mid rank for a late run.  Best on softer track.
Solveig  Won the G2 Fillies’ Revue (1400m) in March but flopped in the Japanese 1000 Guineas (1600m) in April.  Returned to 1200m next start in the G3 Hakodate Sprint Stakes in June - broke well and won impressively.  Missed the break last time when 4th in G3 Keeneland Cup (1200m) on 28 August.  Settles close to the lead, no ground worries.
Dance Director  This 6yo horse finished in front of Big Arthur on two occasions - when 2nd in G2 Hanshin Cup (1400m) in December and when winning the G3 Silk Road Stakes (1200m) in January. Spelled for 7 months and came off a layoff for a 7th in the G2 Centaur Stakes (1200m).  Should improve for second up. Usually races held up and no track concerns.
Teehaff  Half-brother to former HK Sprint winner Lucky Nine, Teehaff scored three straight wins between April and June last year.  Endured a lean season since last year’s Sprinters Stakes, coming off an 11th place latest in the G2 Centaur Stakes (1200m) on 11 September.  Settles back and handles softer track as well.
Nero  Progressive at pattern level this season, finished 2nd in his 3 recent starts. First two runs over 1000m and then latest when 1L 2nd behind Big Arthur in the G2 Centaur Stakes (1200m) on 11 September.  Has been working nicely since resuming training after the race.  Has no concern with the track.  Usually races close to the lead, can also settle mid-pack. 
Big Arthur  Claimed his first pattern race, also his first G1 title, when winning the Takamatsunomiya Kinen (1200m) at Chukyo in March in a course record time. Taking an early lead for the first time in his latest win in G2 Centaur Stakes (1200m) on 11 September.  He was able to save ground and maintained a safe margin until the finish.  He is now reportedly in good shape.  Sitting handily suits best.
Blanc Bonheur  Back to 1200m for the first time since winning the G3 Hakodate Nisai Stakes in July 2015 when scoring her 2nd graded-race title in G3 Keeneland Cup (1200m) at Sapporo on 28 August.  Three wins in three career starts over 1200m.  She is now in good shape for her first start at Nakayama. Usually races held up.   
Bel Canto  Back-to-back JRA Summer Sprint Series champion in 2015 and 2016.  This 5yo mare again won the G3 Ibis Summer Dash (1000m) in July before pulling off a runner-up effort in G3 Kitakyushu Kinen (1200m) latest on 21 August. Races prominently or settles near the lead. 
Mikki Isle  Fourth in this race last year, Mikki Isle finished 0.75L 2nd behind Big Arthur in the G1 Takamatsunomiya Kinen (1200m).  Will make his race return here following a six-month layoff.  With his temperament issue, his connections believe going directly to the Sprinters Stakes is likely better than having a prep-up run two weeks before this race.  He has good speed from the start and will likely take the lead.
Let’s Go Donki  <
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