Danon Scorpion Stings in NHK Mile Cup

Danon Scorpion | JRA Photo

Danon Scorpion (Jpn) (Lord Kanaloa {Jpn) recorded a career-high win when taking the G1 NHK Mile Cup at Tokyo Sunday. Unhurried in the early going exiting after exiting the widest stall, the colt settled in mid-division as the leaders slugged it out up front. Inching closer approaching the home turn, he reeled in late-leader and favorite Serifos (Jpn) (Daiwa Major {Jpn} in the stretch, drew even at the 100-meter marker and held off the late-closing Matenro Orion (Jpn) (Daiwa Major {Jpn}) by a neck with Kawakita Reverie (Jpn) (Drefong) a similar margin back in third. Serifos was fourth.

“It was a great feeling to have won in front of a big crowd like this. It was a close victory and I knew that the horses on the outside route were all coming up with a lot of force, so although I felt we had won crossing the wire, I had to be sure by watching the replay,” said winning jockey Yuga Kawada. “Danon Scorpion was in perhaps his best condition coming into this race so I had a lot of confidence [despite a wide draw]. He was in good rhythm and balance so I had no worries.”

With a pair of wins at two, including the Listed Hagi S., he concluded the 2021 season with a third in the G1 Asahi Hai Futurity Stakes (1,600m). He was seventh in his 3-year-old debut in the G3 Kyodo News Hai in February but bounced back to win the Apr. 16 G3 Arlington Cup.

Pedigree Note:

Danon Scorpion is out of Canadian Horse of the Year Lexie Lou, winner of the 2014 Queen's Plate, the first jewel in Canada's Triple Crown. A $5,577 yearling purchase at the Canadian Thoroughbred Horse Society, Lexie Lou also earned Champion 3-year-old Filly honors in 2014, the same season she annexed the Woodbine Oaks. Lexie Lou retired with 10 wins from 24 starts and earnings of more than $1.9 million. Nine of her wins came in stakes races, including the GII Dance Smartly S., GII Nassau S., and GIII Autumn Miss S. She also ran second to Kentucky Derby winner California Chrome in the 2014 GI Hollywood Derby. Offered at the Keeneland November sale in 2016, she realized a $1-million final bid from K I Farm.

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