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(Image : Herald Sun - Footage : German Racing Course)
JAPAN CUP (G1)
Tokyo Racecourse, 2400m, Turf
27 November 2011
For some decades now, the Japan Cup has ranked amongst the world’s most wanted prizes, yet it’s a strange quirk of the way things work, that back in their homeland, despite the great horses which have come to conquer from around the globe, the Japanese have maintained a vice-like hold on the outcomes. Yes, there have been the exceptions, but by and large, the Japanese racehorse has made his statement, and the world has finally acknowledged it.
The best in Japan are up there with the best in the world, and this week was no different. The run-away winner in record time of Europe’s most prestigious mile-and-a-half event, the Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe, and her runner-up were there, Danedream and Sharita, and both went off at short odds. Both were denied as Buena Vista, who lost the race in the steward’s room last year, got her revenge with a neck victory in the dying strides. Last season’s Japanese Horse of the Year (and a worthy aspirant for the same title again this year), Buena Vista, is another descendant of the all-conquering Sunday Silence, being a daughter of the accomplished racehorse, Special Week.
The race was a triumph for our friends at Northern Farm, who emulated Summerhill’sVodacom Durban July exacta this year, with the first and second past the post. Readers of these columns will know that Africa’s only son of Sunday Silence, Admire Main, the joint second top-rated three-year-old of this year, is here courtesy of our relationship with Katsumi Yoshida’sNorthern Farm. Was this a “jingle” for those breeders who still have mares to cover and may it be looking for a dimension few others already have? Admire Main’s busy, but he’s not overwhelmed to the degree that he can’t find room for you!