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Kyoto Racecourse is the venue for one of Japan’s most prestigious long distance races on Sunday, April 30, the Tenno Sho (Spring), or Emperor’s Cup as it is known in English. Going back as far as the early 20th century, different racing clubs around Japan held their own Emperor’s Cup races, before its current format began in 1937/38, making it a race steeped in history. The Grade 1 Tenno Sho (Spring) is run over 3,200 meters of the outer track at Kyoto, taking in roughly one and a half circuits of the turf course. This will be the 78th running of the spring race, and adding in the autumn races makes it the 155th overall.

It is a race for 4-year-olds and up, and with the exception of a 2kg allowance for fillies and mares, all horses carry a set weight of 58kgs. There have been 19 nominations for a maximum field of 18, and the total purse for the race is a cool \325 million, with \150 million going to the winner. The race record time is still held by the great Deep Impact, the last first favorite to win the race, and he did so in a time of 3 minutes, 13.4 seconds, back in 2006.

Lead up races to this year’s Tenno Sho (Spring) have been the Grade 2 Hanshin Daishoten run over 3,000 meters in March, the Grade 2 Nikkei Sho run over 2,500 meters at Nakayama in March, and the newly promoted to Grade 1 status, Osaka Hai, run earlier this month over 2,000 meters at Hanshin. Winners of the Tenno Sho (Spring) in the last 10 years have been four, five or six year-olds, with 4-year-olds just getting the upper hand with four victories, while five and six year-olds have three wins apiece. Five second favorites have won in the last decade, causing the first favorite to draw a blank in that period.

It looks like a clash of the titans on Sunday, when Kitasan Black and Satono Diamond renew their rivalry, but there’s plenty of more talent in the lineup to make sure they don’t have it all their own way. As the great race beckons, final declarations and the barrier draw will be available later in the week. The big race is Race 11 at Kyoto on Sunday, with a post time of 15:40 local time. Here’s a look at some of the contenders:

Kitasan Black: 2016 JRA Horse of the Year, Kitasan Black’s reputation is without dispute, as he just seems to be getting stronger and stronger. Galloping away to win last year’s Japan Cup, the 5-year-old has won nine times from a 15-race career, and has only been unplaced once. Four of his wins have been at Grade 1 level, including the recent Osaka Hai at Hanshin over 2,000 meters earlier this month, and let’s not forget, he won the Tenno Sho (Spring) last year. He’s already won over a billion yen in prize money. Jockey Yutaka Take, who is pegged for the ride again on Sunday, has ridden him seven times and seems to really get the best out of him. Kitasan Black has been flying in training, putting in a six furlong time of 82.7 seconds, three furlongs at 38.1 seconds, and a final furlong of 11.7 seconds, on the woodchip course at the Ritto Training Center on April 19. Trainer Hisashi Shimizu commented: “It was a great win last time, and I was relieved that all went well, given the status of the horse, and the expectations of the fans. He came out of the race well, and we just gave him an easy three or four days. I’m looking forward to taking on Satono Diamond, and I just hope all goes smoothly leading up to the race.”

Satono Diamond: The 4-year-old by Deep Impact has started favorite in all but one of his races, and jockey Christophe Lemaire has ridden him each time, including his biggest victories in last year’s Grade 1 Kikuka Sho (Japanese St. Leger) and the year-ending Grade 1 Arima Kinen (Grand Prix). Two of his seven wins have been over 3,000 meters. In training, Satono Diamond recorded very similar times to Kitasan Black at the Ritto Training Center on the woodchip course on April 20. Working with stablemate, Prophet, his six furlong time was 82.8 seconds, three furlongs in 38.3 seconds, and a final furlong time of 11.8 seconds. Assistant trainer at the Yasutoshi Ikee stable, Yuki Iwasaki, said, “He’s worked well with his training partner recently, recording a good time in the last furlong. I think having had the one race this year, he’s open to a lot more improvement.”

Cheval Grand: A horse who is always knocking on the door, the 5-year-old by Heart’s Cry was bred at Northern Racing, is owned by Kazuhiro Sasaki, and is trained by Yasuo Tomomichi. He was third in last year’s Tenno Sho (Spring), and finished in the same spot in last year’s Japan Cup. He was second to Satono Diamond in his only race this year, the Grade 2 Hanshin Daishoten over 3,000 meters in March. His recent regular jockey, Yuichi Fukunaga, will partner him on Sunday. Trainer Tomomichi said, “He ran well last time, and was slightly unlucky in being marked a lot of the way by the eventual winner. We didn’t send him to the farm after that, like we did last year, as he has a tendency to gain weight. His training has been fine so far.”

Sciacchetra: Rising through the ranks quite impressively, this 4-year-old colt by Manhattan Cafe is four wins from just six starts, and has always been in the first three. His latest win came in the Grade 2 Nikkei Sho over 2,500 meters at Nakayama in March. He runs in the Kaneko Makoto Holdings Co. Ltd. colours, and is trained by Katsuhiko Sumii. The big names connected with him are completed by his big race jockey, Hironobu Tanabe. Assistant trainer Yasuyuki Tsujino commented: “We’ve been surprised by his rapid improvement. There have been no problems after his last run; no damage or stiffness, and his training has gone as expected. Being by Manhattan Cafe, we think his career has some way to go.”

Dee Majesty: Last year’s Satsuki Sho (Japanese 2000 Guineas) winner is looking to try and rediscover some of his sparkle, after finishing sixth most recently to Sciacchetra in the Grade 2 Nikkei Sho. It’ll be just his second run at Kyoto, after finishing fourth at the track in last year’s Kikuka Sho (Japanese St. Leger), run over a distance of 3,000 meters. The 4-year-old colt by Deep Impact is trained by Yoshitaka Ninomiya, and a stable staff recently commented: “He was a little heavy for his last race in the Nikkei Sho, but given that, and the fact it was his first run this year, I think his sixth place finish wasn’t bad at all. As the weather warms up, his condition gets better, and in training he’s worked well.”

Gold Actor: The 6-year-old by Screen Hero is a pretty consistent type, having finished in the first three 13 times from a 19-race career to date. He’s taken on Grade 1 races five times, and has one top-level victory to his name, the 2015 Arima Kinen (Grand Prix). In his only run this year, he finished fifth to Sciacchetra in the Grade 2 Nikkei Sho. It will be his third time to tackle the Kyoto course, and it’s looking as if jockey Norihiro Yokoyama will get the ride on Gold Actor for the first time. Assistant trainer, Toshiaki Sasajima, said, “He just needed to run a little better in his last race. He’s come out of it fine, and has been training in his usual way. He was a little unfortunate in last year’s race, drawing a wide gate, and getting a bit worked up before running, so hopefully that won’t happen this time.”

Albert: In his three Grade 1 races so far, Albert’s best finish has been sixth, and that was the Tenno Sho (Spring) last year. He proved his staying power, however, when winning his only race this year, the Grade 3 Diamond Stakes over 3,400 meters at Tokyo in February, when he was sent off as the favorite. The 6-year-old was bred at Northern Farm, and is trained by Noriyuki Hori. Assistant trainer, Kazutomo Mori, said, “He’s come back from the farm, and there’s little change in him. He looks in good condition. He finished sixth in the race last year, and we felt there was a bit of a difference between him and the other Grade 1 horses. However, given his powerful victory most recently, this might not be the case now.”

SATSUKI SHO 2017 - Ninth Pick Al Ain by Deep Impac 17 Apr 12:19 pm

Al Ain defeated a strong field of three-year-olds that included 11 graded winners—largest number in the history of the race—in the Satsuki Sho (Japanese 2000 Guineas), the first leg of the three-year-old Triple Crown, while renewing the race record set by Dee Majesty (JPN, by Deep Impact) last year by 0.1 second. The son of Deep Impact won his two starts over a mile as a two-year-old and although beaten to sixth in his kickoff start this year in the Shinzan Kinen (G3, 1,600m) due to a disadvantage, Al Ain claimed his first graded victory in the Mainichi Hai (G3, 1,800m) just three weeks ago. Trainer Yasutoshi Ikee, who dominated the top two positions in this race, registered his 17th JRA-G1 victory—his first since winning the year-end Arima Kinen with Satono Diamond last year—and second Satsuki Sho title since winning the race with Orfevre in 2011. Jockey Kohei Matsuyama, who debuted in 2009, captured his first JRA-G1 and classic title and his seventh graded JRA victory.

Breaking from stall eleven, Al Ain rushed out to rally for the lead and eventually settled around fifth while eyeing race favorite Fan Dii Na on the inside. The son of Deep Impact was caught between horses as the field crowded in entering the homestretch, but once Kohei Matsuyama guided him through a narrow space for a clear path around the 200-meter pole, the bay unleashed a powerful drive and caught up with Persian Knight 100 meters out for a strong duel, which he won by a neck margin.

“I can't believe we won! I was runner-up in two G1 races last year so it feels just great to be a winner. He ran a strong race last time so I was quite confident today. He wasn't responding well in the last two corners but stretched really well in the straight. He's easy to ride so I think he'll have no problem with the extra distance in the Derby,” commented Kohei Matsuyama

Fourth choice Persian Knight traveled toward the rear, fourth from last, but gradually advanced forward along the rails through the backstretch. Entering the homestretch toward the front, the son of Harbinger also threaded through the crowded horses and took command 200 meters out but was unable to hold off the strong charge by Al Ain in the last 100 meters.

Rated around sixth from the front, 12th favorite Danburite stalked Fan Dii Na through most of the trip but overtook the race favorite 100 meters out and accelerated powerfully to close in on the dueling front runners to cross the wire 3/4 length behind in third. Meanwhile, Fan Dii Na took the lead briefly at early stretch but weakened in the uphill and finished seventh, about 3-1/4 lengths behind winner.

Other Horses:
4th: (16) Clincher―stalked leaders in 3rd, rallied for lead at early stretch, sustained bid, weakened in last 100m
5th: (5) Rey de Oro―sat near rear, responded well on inner stretch, failed to threaten top finishers
6th: (2) Suave Richard―traveled 3-wide in mid-pack, quickened in last 200m, was too late
8th: (17) Win Bright―broke poorly, made headway to mid-field on outer route, never a threat
9th: (4) Cadenas―raced near rear early, advanced along rails at backstretch, lacked needed kick
10th: (9) Platina Voice―ran behind eventual winner, met traffic 300m out, lost momentum
11th: (13) Satono Ares―trailed in rear, showed belated charge, timed fastest over last 3 furlongs
12th: (6) Outliers―settled toward rear, angled wide, passed tired rivals at stretch
13th: (18) Trust―pressed pace from widest draw, led briefly around final corner, weakened in last 200m
14th: (3) Komano Impulse―traveled in mid-group, found little room between 3rd and 4th corner, even paced
15th: (14) King's Rush―sat 3-wide toward rear, unable to reach contention
16th: (1) My Style—hugged rails in mid-division, outrun by rivals after 3rd corner
17th: (15) Adam Barows―set solid pace, led until 3rd corner, faded thereafter
18th: (12) America's Cup―raced 4-wide in mid-group early, dropped back before 3rd corner

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SATSUKI SHO 2017 - Preview 12 Apr 11:29 am

It's a big weekend coming up next at Nakayama Racecourse, just outside Tokyo, when the Nakayama Grand Jump (J-G1) will take place on Saturday, April 15, followed by the first leg of the Triple Crown, the Satsuki Sho (Japanese 2000 Guineas), on Sunday, April 16. It will be the 77th running of the colts' Classic, and some of Japan's greatest thoroughbreds have left their mark on the race. The roll call of horses to win the race includes Saint Lite (1941), Shinzan (1963), Symboli Rudolf (1984), and in the modern era, Deep Impact (2005) and Orfevre (2011), all horses that went on to win the Triple Crown.

The race is run over 2,000 meters on the inner turf track of the course, starting in front of the stands and comprising of just over a circuit of the track. There have been 19 nominations for this year's race, and one of them is the eye-catching filly, Fan Dii Na, bidding to become the first filly to win the race since Hide Hikari in 1948. Twenty three Satsuki Sho winners have gone on to win the Derby, the last to do so was Duramente in 2015. The total purse for the race is \216 million, with \100 million going to the winner. First favorites have only won twice in the last 10 years, and last year's winner, Dee Majesty, sent off eighth in the betting, kept another favorite out of the winner's enclosure. He also set a new record time for the race, winning in 1 minute, 57.9 seconds.

Lead up races to the Satsuki Sho have included three big races in March, namely the Grade 3 Flower Cup, Grade 2 Fuji TV Sho Spring Stakes, and Grade 2 Hochi Hai Yayoi Sho, the latter proving the most successful when runners come from this race and then take on the Satsuki Sho.

The final field for Sunday's big race, and the draw, will be available later in the week, but in the meantime, here's a look at some of the top names expected to feature in the Satsuki Sho, which will be Race 11 on the card on April 16, with a post time of 15:40 local time:

Fan Dii Na: By far the most fascinating runner to be nominated, the filly by Deep Impact is unbeaten in three starts, and what's more is coming off a five-length victory in the Grade 3 Flower Cup over 1,800 meters at Nakayama in March. She recently worked on the hill on April 5 at Ritto Training Center, putting in a four furlong time of 54.1 seconds, with three furlongs in 39.1 seconds, and a final furlong time of 12.4 seconds. Jockey Yasunari Iwata thinks she's “certainly a match for the colts,” while trainer Tomokazu Takano commented: “She's eating well and there's no problem with the way she's coming on. It'll be the second time to transport her to Nakayama, and keeping her calm will be the main thing. She's up against colts this time, and she's still immature, so it won't be easy.”

Cadenas: This colt, also by Deep Impact, has an impressive record to date, always finishing in the top two from five starts so far. His latest win was in the Grade 2 Hochi Hai Yayoi Sho over 2,000 meters at Nakayama last month, and he was sent off favorite for that race. Jockey Yuichi Fukunaga has ridden him the last three times, and is expected to ride him again this Sunday, while trainer Kazuya Nakatake is seeking just his second Grade 1, having won the 2009 NHK Mile with Jo Cappuccino. An assistant trainer for Nakatake said, “Looking at his last win, we're able to look ahead to the Satsuki Sho. He's recovered well from that last race, and so that's been a help. He's eating well, so everything's fine up to now.”

Suave Richard: The Northern Farm bred colt was an expensive purchase at the 2014 select sale, but his \59 million prize money tally so far has gone some way to repay his connections. He's two wins and two seconds from four starts, and in his only race this year he ran out a 2-1/2 length winner of the Grade 3 Kyodo News Service Hai over 1,800 meters at Tokyo in February. Jockey Hirofumi Shii has ridden him in all his races and is lined up for the ride again. Trainer Yasushi Shono commented: “He showed he could race last time when winning. He's come back from the farm in top condition and seems to have developed. We've transported him long distance a couple of times now, and it's not a problem.” The trainer is looking for his first Grade 1 title.

Rey de Oro: Rey de Oro has won all three of his starts so far, and they've all been over 2,000 meters, including the Grade 2 Hopeful Stakes at Nakayama last December, the last time he ran. The King Kamehameha colt is one of two entries for trainer Kazuo Fujisawa, looking to avenge Soul Stirring's defeat last week in the Oka Sho (Japanese 1000 Guineas). Rey de Oro's latest work at Miho Training Center saw him put in a four furlong time of 52.7 seconds, three furlongs at 38.6 seconds, and a final furlong time of 12.9 seconds. Assistant trainer Daisuke Tsumagari said, “It's taken time for him to recover from his Hopeful Stakes run, but we wanted to give him that time. Now on his return to the Miho Training Center, he's been working well uphill and on the woodchip course, and has filled out quite a bit.”

Satono Ares: The other runner from the Fujisawa stable, Satono Ares was last year's champion 2-year-old colt. He won the Grade 1 Asahi Hai Futurity Stakes last December over a mile at Hanshin, and is three wins and two seconds from a six race career to date. He has never raced beyond 1,800 meters, but being by Deep Impact, it shouldn't be a problem. Tsumagari commented: “His timing was off a little in his last race, and he had trouble finding his rhythm. He's a horse with power, and he needs to just use what he has to run his best race.”

Win Bright: The grey colt by Stay Gold has won his last two races, both at Nakayama, the latest being the Grade 2 Fuji TV Sho Spring Stakes over 1,800 meters. He generally races midfield, before producing the goods at the finish. Bred at Cosmo View Farm, his big race jockey will be Masami Matsuoka. He is trained by Yoshihiro Hatakeyama, who recently said, “He's by Stay Gold, so he can be a bit unruly, like he was in the paddock last time. He still ran a good race though, and I was pleased with what he did to win. I think he's improved from that and will prove versatile enough from now.” The trainer is another looking for just his second Grade 1, after winning the NHK Mile in 2013 with Meiner Ho O.

America's Cup: By Manhattan Cafe, America's Cup has four runs and has won three times, including his latest race, the Grade 3 Kisaragi Sho over 1,800 meters at Kyoto in February. It will be his first time at Nakayama, and also his first run over 2,000 meters. His trainer, Hidetaka Otonashi, is enjoying a good year so far, and commented: “He's put on about 10kgs, but I think come the race, he'll be about the same weight as he was for his last race. He should be able to run in a similar way to last time, although with a full field, he'll need to find his rhythm.”

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OKA SHO 2017 - Reine Minoru Pulls Upset Victory in 10 Apr 12:11 pm

Eighth favorite Reine Minoru claimed the Oka Sho (Japanese 1000 Guineas), the first of the three-year-old fillies’ Triple Crown, and her second grade-race title following the Kokura Nisai Stakes which she won as a two-year-old against colts in her second career start in September. Third against Soul Stirring in her first G1 challenge in the Hanshin Juvenile Fillies last December, she kicked off her three-year-old campaign finishing fourth in the Queen Cup in February and had come off a runner-up effort in the Fillies’ Revue. Trainer Masaru Honda, who had come into this race with eight grade-race titles since opening his yard in 2007, celebrated his first G1 victory and classic title with the win—he was in fact a winning jockey of the 2001 Oka Sho with T.M. Ocean. Jockey Kenichi Ikezoe partnered the filly for the first time in the race and landed his second Oka Sho title, a memorable victory as his first career G1 victory was in the same race with Arrow Carry in 2002. The jockey, whose last JRA-G1 win was in the Yushun Himba (Japanese Oaks) with Sinhalite last year, has now a career total of 23 G1 victories.

Reine Minoru broke sharply then eased back as Kawakita Enka shot past outside her to challenge the leader then chased the pace three wide in around fourth/fifth position while the pace setter tried to maintain a five-length advantage up to the final turn. Once entering the homestretch, the Daiwa Major filly edged closer and inherited the lead as she wore down the early leaders inside the furlong pole then dug in deep to fend off her foes coming from behind to secure a half-length victory.

“I felt that she was a talented filly and had a good chance to win the Oka Sho when I rode her for the first time in training. I was more confident today as she felt really good in the post parade, and once she broke smoothly out of the gate, I just concentrated on keeping her stride in good rhythm. I was careful not to let her go too early in the straight and once we hit the front, it felt like forever up to the finish line as the horses came chasing behind us, but she really held on well,” commented Kenichi Ikezoe.

Lys Gracieux bided her time in mid-field with Soul Stirring in view on her outside then tracked the race favorite into the lane before doggedly chasing the leader to the wire and overtaking Soul Stirring in the final strides while just short of reaching the winner for second.

Best Two-Year Old Filly of 2016 and heavy favorite Soul Stirring broke smoothly and bided her time in mid-pack around eighth. First time racing over non-firm tracks, the Frankel filly was slow in responding coming into the straight and, while gradually picking up speed in mid-stretch, failed to threaten the eventual winner and just managed to hold on for third.

“The track condition was against her and she kept changing leads. She wasn’t able to show her true form in this race,” commented Christophe Lemaire on her first defeat of her career.

Other Horses:
4th: (8) Karakurenai―raced in rear pack, found little room at early stretch, quickened well, neck short of place
5th: (12) Aerolithe―settled in rear division, angled wide, showed impressive but belated effort
6th: (17) Deirdre―sat near rear, timed fastest over last 3 furlongs, but was too late
7th: (18) Kawakita Enka―advanced from wide stall, led before 3rd corner, gave way 200m out, weakened
8th: (2) Rising Reason―hugged rails in mid-group, accelerated until meeting traffic 200m out
9th: (4) Jeune Ecole―raced behind eventual winner, showed mild effort, even paced thereafter
10th: (13) Vous Etes Jolie―advanced from wide draw, ran in 2nd after brief lead, sustained bid until 100m out
11th: (1) Mi Suerte―saved ground in mid-division, checked around 200m marker, failed to respond
12th: (15) Admire Miyabi―trailed in rear, driven after 3rd corner, turned wide, lacked needed kick
13th: (9) Gold Cape―rated behind mid-pack, failed to find clear path 200m out, lost momentum
14th: (11) Alonza Mona―traveled 3-wide in mid-group, unable to reach contention
15th: (7) Show Way―prominent early in 3rd, dropped back mid-stretch
16th: (16) Miss Panthere―raced 4-wide in mid-division, never fired at stretch
17th: (5) Belle Capri―led briefly then eased back to 4-5th, faded after final corner
Scratched: (3) Salonika―the Elfin Stakes (1,600m; Feb.4) winner, due to lameness on her left hind leg

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Oka Sho (Japanese 1000 Guineas) (G1) - Preview 05 Apr 6:30 pm

After last week’s inaugural running of the Osaka Hai as a Grade 1, comes a more time-honored race in the form of the Grade 1 Oka Sho (Japanese 1000 Guineas). A race first run in 1939 and won by a filly named Soul Lady, the first Classic of the year for 3-year-old fillies has become synonymous with the blooming of the cherry trees in Japan, and hence the race’s name. Next Sunday will see the 77th running of the race at Hanshin Racecourse, located between the cities of Osaka and Kobe.

Twenty two fillies have been nominated for the maximum number of 18 starters that could line up on Sunday. The race is run on turf over a mile on the outer course of the track. Some big name winners of the race have included Buena Vista (2009), Apapane (2010), who holds the race record time of 1 minute, 33.3 seconds, and the great Gentildonna in 2012. The fillies carry a set weight of 55kgs, and a winner’s check of \92 million awaits the first to cross the line.

Major lead up races to this year’s Oka Sho have been the Grade 2 Hochi Hai Fillies’ Revue, the Grade 3 Tulip Sho, and the Grade 3 Daily Hai Queen Cup. In the last 10 years, market leaders have done well, with 1st, 2nd or 3rd favorites taking out seven of those 10 races. Horses trained at the JRA Ritto Training Center also have quite a stranglehold on the race, winning eight out of the last 10 runnings of the Oka Sho.

Final declarations and the barrier draw will be announced towards the end of the week, and a great race is in prospect this time around. The Oka Sho will be Race 11 on the card at Hanshin on Sunday, with a post time of 15:40 local time.

Here’s a look at some of the top fillies expected to be in the final lineup:

Soul Stirring: One of two fillies in the race sired by the great Frankel, there are enough big names associated with this filly to seemingly carry her over the line first. Trained by Kazuo Fujisawa, who sent out Dance in the Mood to win the race in 2004, the trainer is looking for his 25th Grade 1 title here in Japan. Aboard the unbeaten filly will be Christophe Lemaire, who also rode the dam of Soul Stirring, Stacelita, to win the French Oaks in 2009. Assistant trainer, Daisuke Tsumagari, commented recently: “For the Tulip Sho, it was the second time she had to endure the long transportation to the track, but she was quite relaxed and was in fact 4kgs heavier than when she ran before. She was able to handle breaking from an outside gate in a small field and maintained prominent position throughout the race. On her return to the stable, everything’s gone well with her, and she’s a clever horse who is easy to control.”

Lys Gracieux: This filly by Heart’s Cry has been sent off 1st or 2nd favorite in all five of her races to date, and is trained by Yoshito Yahagi, and will most likely be ridden by Yutaka Take, just off another great win with Kitasan Black in the Osaka Hai. Lys Gracieux is coming off a third-place finish to Soul Stirring in the Grade 3 Tulip Sho over 1,600 meters at Hanshin in March. An assistant to trainer Yahagi said, “She eats well, but doesn’t gain weight, which is a bit of a weak point, but she has gained 6kgs of late. She’s relaxed and is running better, and rather than overdo things with her, we’ll just keep her ticking over.”

Mi Suerte: The other filly by Frankel nominated for the race, she last ran at the end of last year when she finished fourth in the Grade 1 Asahi Hai Futurity Stakes over a mile at Hanshin, having won both her previous races, one at Hanshin and the other at Kyoto. Lined up for the ride is jockey Yuga Kawada, who rode her in recent work and said she was in “good form.” Trainer Yasutoshi Ikee commented: “She’s a bit highly strung, but has matured and grown, and is more muscular in her hind quarters and neck. Because of her layoff, she didn’t fully get into top gear in work on March 23, but from now I think she’ll get better.”

Admire Miyabi: Another filly by Heart’s Cry, Admire Miyabi has won three times from four starts, and most recently won the Grade 3 Daily Hai Queen Cup over a mile at Tokyo in February. With Lemaire booked to ride Soul Stirring, Mirco Demuro has picked up what looks like a good ride here. Trainer Yasuo Tomomichi said, “She takes a little time to hit full throttle, but she was certainly suited to the Tokyo track last time. We gave her a short break at the farm and she came back to us on March 8. Everything’s been fine since her return, and while you could think of her racing better over a longer distance, she’s got results over a mile.”

Miss Panthere: This Daiwa Major filly has just had the two starts, winning on her debut, and then finishing a bold second to Soul Stirring in her latest outing in the Grade 3 Tulip Sho. It mustn’t be forgotten that Soul Stirring won that race in a time of 1 minute, 33.2 seconds, 0.1 seconds faster than Apapane’s race record time for the Oka Sho. Of Miss Panthere, trainer Mitsugu Kon commented: “In her two races so far, she’s been able to demonstrate her closing speed, even when the speed is really on, like it was in her last race. As she’s only had the two runs, we’re still learning what’s best for her, but things look good.”

Karakurenai: This Shadai Farm bred filly was an impressive winner of her latest race, the Grade 2 Fillies’ Revue over 1,400 meters at Hanshin in March. All of her four races have been over 1,400 meters, but the extra 200 meters hardly looks to be a problem. Jockey Hironobu Tanabe has been given the big race ride on her, and he’s enjoying a good start to the year, with surely more Grade 1 wins for him just a matter of time. Trainer Takeshi Matsushita said, “She was out the back in her last race, but still managed a three furlong time of 33.5 seconds, and closed well from the fourth corner to go on and win well. She doesn’t seem to have any tiredness after that, and we’re just taking it easy with her for the moment.”

Aerolithe: The grey filly by Kurofune will be looking to notch a win for the Kanto-based connections. Aerolithe won on her debut, and she has never finished out of the first two in four starts. Norihiro Yokoyama will ride her, as he has done in all her races, including the latest, when she was beaten 1/2 a length by Admire Miyabi in the Grade 3 Daily Hai Queen Cup. Her trainer, Takanori Kikuzawa, said, “Previously, her footwork wasn’t great, but we’ve been training her uphill on the woodchip course, and her footwork’s gotten better, as well as her not pulling the jockey so much. Training in this way for the race seems better.”

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Last week Results

  • Highest Payout
  • Return Rate
Rank Tipster Race Payoff
1 South South
23 Apr Tokyo6R
4,730 473,000
2 Masked Doctor Ei Masked Doctor Ei
23 Apr Fukushima4R
280 430,640
3 Baken Seikatsu Baken Seikatsu
23 Apr Tokyo11R
32,010 352,110
4 km km
23 Apr Tokyo5R
2,600 260,000
5 Sugouma Katsuko Sugouma Katsuko
22 Apr Tokyo9R
12,760 232,320

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Rank Tipster No.of
38R 171% 28% 249,330 54,248
2 Okabe Okabe
32R 160% 15% 161,000 85,400
3 Joie Joie
45R 128% 46% 111,800 24,133
4 kiri kiri
72R 124% 26% 76,700 20,510
5 Seiryu No.1 Seiryu No.1
45R 114% 31% 64,710 36,536
6 Baken Seikatsu Baken Seikatsu
36R 108% 8% 29,510 129,470
7 Royce Royce
37R 106% 35% 5,280 6,536
8 Shimoon Shimoon
72R 104% 27% 10,200 12,210
9 Sugouma Katsuko Sugouma Katsuko
72R 103% 34% 23,040 29,721

>>See more

Tip Coliseum --Japan's Biggest Racing Tips Arena! Are you Going to Compete? Or just Watch?

Over the course of a year, some 5 million racing tips are registered in the Tip Coliseum, Japan's largest and highest-level racing tip event. Different people use it in different ways--from participating in the tournament and competing for rankings, to watching the tips of top rankers.

Just registering as a member (free) allows you to use the functions of the Tip Coliseum for free.

 Tournament Info:Tournament 128 is currently being held!(22 Apr - 14 May)

Tournament 128 Latest result

Rank Tipster Level
Deviation Return
e04c5d93d2 e04c5d93d2
86.8 931%
502c6b91ed 502c6b91ed
83.7 439%
65e3f71f71 65e3f71f71
83.6 463%
c796315c78 c796315c78
83.0 525%
sou sou
82.8 612%

>>See more

To Beginners
--Smart Ways to Use Umanity--from Racing Tips to Horse Racing Romance--

Umanity offers all kinds of services to meet the different needs of racing fans, but on the other hand, some people feel "there are so many services, I don't know where to begin." For that reason, we introduce ways to use Umanity according to the type of user. We know you'll find a way that fits you perfectly♪

Data Cruncher

You are the type who assembles information useful for making tips, especially on high-stakes races, such as GI races, and refer to them as you make your own racing tips.
Suitable service

Graded race Page
U index

Recommend using!

[High Stakes Strategies] is packed with useful information for making racing tips, such as the latest information, like pre-race training times on the horses scheduled to run in high stakes races, the expected odds in the racing card, the columns of professional tipster, results from the past 10 years, etc. Then there is Umanity's proprietary racehorse performance index, the U-index, which many people pay to use for its accuracy; members can use it free, but just for high-stakes races, so using it in conjunction with the High Stakes Strategies makes for a perfect combo.

Racing Tip

Likes racing tips better than 3 squares a day! You're the type who makes tips on lots of races per day, not just the main ones!
Suitable service

Tip Coliseum
Race Info

Recommend using!

First off, try registering your tips in the [Tip Coliseum]. Of course there's the fun of competing for rankings and the racing tips bragging rights for all of Japan--but with our auto-tallying tools you can keep track of your results and bump up your racing prediction prowess through objective self-analysis. What's more, Umanity's [Racing Card (for VIP Club members)] is full of tools for increasing the accuracy of your tips, such as our proprietary speed index, the U-index, as well as “Stable Comments” and “Training Evaluation” and so on provided by Horseracing 8.


You see the horses as a vehicle for investing and you don't hold the your purse strings tight when it comes to high-quality information--you're looking for a high return!
Suitable service

Pro tipster "MAX"
Sugouma Robot

Recommend using!

With Pro Tipster MAX over 20 well-known professional tipsters provide their racing tips for a fee (from 100 yen/race). And their tips aren't just symbols that indicate the outcome, but proper racing tips that indicate the betting combination and how to allocate funds--racing tips whose wins/losses are completely transparent in this head-to-head world--a totally different critter from other horseracing tip sites, which only post their wins, but not the balance of wins/losses. The racing tips software [Sugouma Robot] is equipped with expected value theory for automatically buying only betting tickets with high expected yields.


You love the fun of horseracing with all your friends! You're the type who wants friends to go to the track with!
Suitable service

Horseracing Diary
offline get-togethers

Recommend using!

It's surprising how many people have nothing to say about horseracing on SNS, such as on Facebook. Umanity is a community just for horseracing fans, so don't hold back in talking about horseracing, such as in your Horseracing Diary. What's more, Umanity rents guest rooms at the Tokyo Race Course and holds horseracing offline get-togethers in both Spring and Fall. As these get-togethers are of like-minded horseracing fans, you're sure to make friends. Come along and have fun.


You're the type who wants to get into horseracing but you don't know where to start!
Suitable service

Graded race Page
Tip Coliseum

Recommend using!

First of all, you should try focusing on high-stakes races because you can get lots of information. [High Stakes Strategies] is packed with useful information for making racing tips, such as the latest information on the horses scheduled to run, the racing card, columns and results from the past 10 years. Next, try registering your tips in the [Tip Coliseum]. Simply registering a tip on a race will double the fun of watching them run. And up to this point it won't even cost you a single penny. You have nothing to lose as it's all free and you can take part in horseracing without betting any money.


More than for picking races or investing, you like horseracing because the horses are so beautiful! You're the type who wants to start as a partial owner!
Suitable service

Umanity POG

Recommend using!

[POG] stands for Paper Owner Game. Even though it's a virtual game, the horses are all real--several thousand JRA registered thoroughbreds. You select from among them and if your bid wins the auction, it's registered as your POG horse. You can keep up to 20 POG horses in your stable and the game is in competing for prize money with those horses. Apart from the game, pictures of about 400 race horses have been posted, and appreciating their beautiful bodies is one more pleasure.


Does it cost anything to use Umanity?

No, registering with and using Umanity is free. Once you become a member (free), you can participate in the Tip Coliseum, and use functions that are helpful in making tips, such as the U-index (Umanity's proprietary speed index) on high-stakes races, U-Favorites (tip odds ), which show what's popular among Umanity users, register horses to watch, betting ticket purchasing tools, etc.--not to mention enjoying horseracing community functions, such as diaries, messaging and circles--all the basics for free.

What do I have to do to register as a member?

Registering is simple--all it takes is an email address.
Once you register your email address, follow the instructions and you'll be registered as a member in 1 to 2 minutes flat! You can also register as a member via an account, such as your Yahoo! JAPAN ID.

Do I have to register to use the site?

No, some functions (such as news) can be used without registering.
However, most of the functions require becoming a member (free) and then you can use them for free, so we recommend becoming a member.
[Free Functions Available to Umanity Members]
-Participate in the Tip Coliseum (registering tips, rankings and auto tallying of results)
-U-index of high-stakes races (Umanity's proprietary racehorse performance index with some 10,000 regular users)
-U-Favorites (tip odds), which show what's popular among Umanity users
-Plus, functions useful for making tips, such as registering horses to watch and betting ticket purchase support
-Community functions like diaries, messaging and circles

Can I see racing tips for free?

There are both free tips and those you pay for.
You have to pay for the racing tips of professional tipsters.
Doing so requires the Umanity virtual currency, Gold (G).
Gold can be purchased with credit card.
Although you can view the racing tips of non-professional tipsters for "free," in some cases you need to use Umanity points, which you can get for free by being active on the site, such as by logging in, posting tips in the Tip Coliseum, etc.

What is the U-index?

It is an index developed exclusively by Umanity to indicate the performance of a racehorse.
The value is based on the time over the distance of each horse to date, and estimates whether and how well they will perform in this race; as such, the higher the index, the better the race performance is expected to be.
The U-index is provided to Umanity members free for high-stakes races. To use it on all races, you have to become a member of the Umanity VIP Club, which is a paid service.

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