Another Japanese Winner As Silver Sonic Goes Ultrasonic In Red Sea Turf

Silver Sonic | Jockey Club of Saudi Arabia


Silver Sonic (Jpn) (Orfevre {Jpn) was the second of three Japanese winners on the Saudi Cup card, and turned in a smooth performance to take the $2.5-million G3 Longines Red Sea Turf H. as the 2-1 favourite by 2 1/2 lengths over Enemy (GB) (Muhaarar {GB}). It was the second consecutive year a Japanese runner–both incidentally bearing the silks of Shadai Race Horse Co.–has lifted the 3000-metre turf prize after Stay Foolish (Jpn) (Stay Gold {Jpn}) in 2022.

Before the race, the main talking horse had been Charlie Johnston's Subjectivist (GB) (Teofilo {Ire}), who, on his best day, loomed a formidable obstacle to his rivals. The 2021 G1 Gold Cup hero duly claimed pacesetting duties, while under the watchful eyes of Damian Lane and Silver Sonic just behind. Trawlerman (Ire) (Golden Horn {GB}) cruised up to stalk from second, and Lane was content to let his grey save ground against the fence.

Subjectivist displayed plenty of verve from the front, but his lengthy injury-induced break from the races began to take its toll and he appeared vulnerable 500 metres from home. Lane sent Silver Sonic, and he responded to take command by the head of the straight, before fending off the closing Enemy, who made his bid out in the centre of the course. It was another three-quarters of a length back to Get Shirty (Ire) (Teofilo {Ire}) in third. Subjectivist finished 12th. After the race, Enemy's rider Richard Kingscote weighed in lighter than allowed, but, after a stewards' inquiry, the result was allowed to stand.

Lane said, “I have had great support in Japan, especially the Shadai Race Horse Club. He began well, which is always important from barrier one. I was happy to track Subjectivist, who was always going to set a nice tempo and be a good horse to follow. I needed a bit of luck to get through but once it opened up he finished really well.”

Yasutoshi Ikee said, “This might be the second win for Japan, but it is a first win for me. This is a great achievement for me and I am very happy.

“I didn't talk tactics with Damien today. I brought Orfevre to the Arc twice but he ran second on both occasions, so winning a big race abroad with Orfevre's son, it is a great pleasure. My father trained Stay Gold, his sire's sire, so the feeling with this victory is so special.”

Joe Fanning, aboard Subjectivist, said after the race, “I felt he was keen enough, he has been off for a while and in the end he just got tired. As long as he's OK afterwards, I'm sure he'll be back.”

The Shadai Farm-bred 7-year-old entire did not finish May's G1 Tenno Sho (Spring) after losing jockey Yuga Kawada at the start, running with the field for the entire race and then bounding over a fence after the finish, but he bounced back to take the 3600-metre G2 Sports Nippon Sho Stayers S. over firm turf on Dec. 3 in his Riyadh warmup.

Silver Sonic will be trained with an eye to the 3200-metre G1 Tenno Sho back in Japan, or he will continue to ply his trade in the desert in the Mar. 25 G2 Dubai Gold Cup at Meydan Racecourse. He could face Saturday's runner-up Enemy once again in the latter.

“I'm very grateful to the people of the JCSA who received us so well,” Ikee added. “Silver Sonic travelled over really well and kept his condition, he has been the same as he is at home. We have two options, the Tenno Sho and the other is the Dubai Gold Cup.”

“We knew the distance wouldn't be a problem,” Lane added. “I would never advise a trainer, but the Tenno Sho looks a good option. I'm just grateful to be a part of it all, it's a big thrill as a part of my career and I'm really enjoying it.”


Pedigree Notes

At stud, the Shadai Stallion Station-based dual Arc runner-up Orfevre has been represented by 25 stakes winners (20 group) led by four-time Group 1 winner Lucky Lilac (Jpn), one of a quartet of top-flight winners for the 15-year-old. Bred on the same Sunday Silence-Tony Bin (Ire) cross as standout stallion Heart's Cry (Jpn) (Deep Impact {Jpn}), Silver Sonic is part of a 36-strong legion of group winners for Tony Bin, who sired seven Group 1 scorers.

The well-credentialed Air Thule (Jpn) earned six victories over the course of four seasons racing, taking a stakes in her native land, third in Singapore's G3 KrisFlyer Sprint, as well as running second in the G1 Prix Maurice de Gheest in 2002. She struck gold with her first foal, the Fuji Kiseki (Jpn) filly Ultima Thule (Jpn), who won both the G2 Centaur S. and G3 Silk Road S. and is already a stakes producer, and the quality continued with her second, 2008 Japanese 2000 Guineas winner Captain Thule (Jpn) (Agnes Tachyon {Jpn}), who also captured two editions of the G3 Asahi Challenge Cup. In 2009, she delivered Crans Montana (Jpn) (Deep Impact {Jpn}), a stakes winner and Group 3-placed in Japan, and four years later that filly's full-sister, Contessa Thule (Jpn), who was third in the G1 Japanese 1000 Guineas in 2015. Silver Sonic is her 11th foal of 13, and one of 11 winners.

Air Thule's dam, Ski Paradise (Lyphard) was of the highest class in Europe, and scored in the G1 Prix du Moulin while placing in three other Grade/Group 1 events on both sides of the Atlantic. She is the ancestress of seven black-type horses. Royal Ski's Ski Goggle, successful in the 1983 GI Acorn S. and the third dam of Silver Sonic, left three other stakes winners in three countries who were all given a chance as sires in Ski Captain (Storm Bird), Ski Champ (Icecapade) and Ski Chief (Chief's Crown).

Saturday, King Abdulaziz (Riyadh), Saudi Arabia
LONGINES RED SEA TURF H.-G3, $2,500,000, King Abdulaziz, 2-25, 4yo/up, 3000mT, 3:06.46, fm.
1–SILVER SONIC (JPN), h, 7, by Orfevre (Jpn)
1st Dam: Air Thule (Jpn) (SW-Jpn, G1SP-Fr, GSP-Sing, $1,442,676), by Tony Bin (Ire)
2nd Dam: Ski Paradise, by Lyphard
3rd Dam: Ski Goggle, by Royal Ski
O-Shadai Race Horse Co., Ltd.; B-Shadai Farm (Jpn); T-Yasutoshi Ikee; J-Damian Lane; $1,500,000. Lifetime Record: GSW-Jpn, 21-6-3-6, $3,031,870. *1/2 to Ultima Thule (Jpn) (Fuji Kiseki {Jpn}), MGSW-Jpn, $2,086,687; Captain Thule (Jpn) (Agnes Tachyon {Jpn}), GSW-Jpn, $3,960,829; Crans Montana (Jpn) (Deep Impact {Jpn}), SW & GSP-Jpn, $2,002,758; and Contessa Thule (Jpn) (Deep Impact {Jpn}), G1SP-Jpn, $499,346. Werk Nick Rating: A+++. *Triple Plus*. Click for the eNicks report & 5-cross pedigree. Click for the free catalog-style pedigree.
2–Enemy (GB), 128, g, 6, Muhaarar (GB)–Prudenzia (Ire), by Dansili (GB). (€420,000 Ylg '18 ARQAUG; €92,000 HRA '21 ARQNOV). O-Tracey Bell & Caroline Lyons; B-Ecurie des Monceaux & Skymarc Farm, Inc. (GB); T-Ian Williams; J-Richard Kingscote; $500,000.
3–Get Shirty (Ire), 125, g, 7, Teofilo (Ire)–Soccer Mom (Ger), by Monsun (Ger). (€30,000 HRA '21 ARQJUL). O-Akela Thoroughbreds Limited; B-Haras du Mont Dit Mont (Ire); T-David O'Meara; J-Joe Fanning; $250,000.
Margins: 2HF, 3/4, NO. Odds: 2.00, 6.00, 18.00.
Also Ran: Big Call, Nate The Great (GB), Sisfahan (Fr), Echt (Jpn), Trawlerman (Ire), Pin Your Hopes (Ire), My Frankel (GB), Al Qareem (Ire), Subjectivist (GB), Master Gatsby (Fr). VIDEO.


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