Satono Crown Strikes for Japan in Vase

4th at ST , HK$16.5mG1 Longines HK Vase (2400m)Winner: Satono Crown (Jpn), c, 4 by Marju (Ire)

Satono Crown | HKJC photo


In 2001, Stay Gold (Jpn) (Sunday Silence) got the HKIR off to a flying start for Japan by taking out the G1 Hong Kong Vase, the first of three wins on the day for the nation. Sunday for the first time since, Satono Crown (Jpn) (Marju {Ire}) came flying late and pegged back hot favorite Highland Reel (Ire) (Galileo {Ire}) to take the Vase back to Japan. One Foot In Heaven (Ire) (Fastnet Rock {Aus}) rounded out the tierce, a country mile off the top two.

Drawn gate nine, Satono Crown was guided down onto the rail by Joao Moreira inside of the opening 200 metres and settled slightly worse than midfield as Highland Reel took over from Eastern Express (Ire) (Fastnet Rock {Aus}) passing the winning post for the first time. Allowed to lob them along at a steady pace, Highland Reel took them into the backstretch, but Big Orange (GB) (Duke of Marmalade {Ire}), posted three wide around the first turn and racing without cover, whipped around them and applied some mid-race pressure to the front-runner. Ryan Moore let it out a notch at midway to regain a clear lead into the final half-mile, while behind him, Satono Crown was asked to improve his position and raced past Silverwave (Fr) (Silver Frost {Ire}) with five furlongs to race. In about sixth spot entering the third corner, Satono Crown was in tight for a stride or two and was shuffled back to about fourth last as Highland Reel still traveled strongly nearing the stretch. Able to find a bit extra with 400 metres to race, Satono Crown emerged as the lone danger and, although Highland Reel was staying on well, Satono Crown showed the superior turn of foot late to cause the upset. With the win, Moreira joins Gerald Mosse as the only riders to post victories in each of the four International Races.

“It's a dream come true to achieve the full house,” the 'Magic Man' said. “I thought this horse was a very good chance before the race and the feeling that he gave me on the track the other day was great, so I knew I had a lot of horse underneath. The way he won today, he's shown that he's got a lot of talent. He beat a world class horse in Highland Reel and being his rider today is a blessing.”

For his part, trainer Aidan O'Brien was not dismayed with the effort from the runner-up.

“He ran very well, he's had a long season but he ran a great race–he ran his heart out,” he commented. “He's had a phenomenal season.”

Pedigree Notes:
The winner's dam was offered carrying the foal that would become Satono Crown at the Goffs November Sale in 2011, but was led out unsold on a bid of €36,000, despite having produced that year's G1 Cheveley Park Stud S. winner Lightening Pearl (Ire). Sold privately to Japan, she has become a commercial success, as her foal of 2014, a colt by Deep Impact (Jpn) now named Satono Victory (Jpn), topped the JRHA Yearling Sale on a bid of ¥253,800,000 from Satono Crown's owner Hajime Satomi. Jioconda produced a filly by Heart's Cry (Jpn) in 2015.

Sunday, Sha Tin, Hong Kong
LONGINES HONG KONG VASE-G1, HK$16,500,000 (£1,691,721/€2,014,034/A$2,854,738/US$2,126,494), 3yo/up, 2400mT, 2:26.22, gd.
1–&SATONO CROWN (JPN), 126, c, 4, by Marju (Ire)
1st Dam: Jioconda (Ire) (SW & GSP-Ire), by Rossini
2nd Dam: La Joconde (Ire), by Vettori (Ire)
3rd Dam: Lust (GB), by Pursuit of Love (GB)
(¥60,900,000 Ylg '13 JRHAJUL). O-Hajime Satomi; B-Northern Racing; T-Noriyuki Hori; J-Joao Moreira; HK$9,405,000. Lifetime Record: MGSW & G1SP-Jpn, 11-5-0-1, HK$23,826,510. *Full to Jolie Jiconde (Ire), GSP-Ire; and Lightning Pearl (Ire), G1SW-Eng, GSW-Ire, $219,015. Click for the eNicks report & 5-cross pedigree. Werk Nick Rating: A++.2–Highland Reel (Ire), 126, c, 4, Galileo (Ire)–Hveger (Aus), by Danehill. (460,000gns Ylg '13 TATOCT). O-Derrick Smith, Mrs John Magnier & Michael Tabor; B-Hveger Syndicate; T-Aidan O'Brien; HK$3,630,000.3–One Foot in Heaven (Ire), 126, c, 4, Fastnet Rock (Aus)–Pride (Fr), by Peintre Celebre. O-Fair Salinia Ltd; B-Craigavon Agro Ltd; T-Alain de Royer-Dupre; HK$1,650,000.
Margins: HF, 6 3/4, 3/4. Odds: 19-1, 1-2, 18-1.
Also Ran: Nuovo Record (Jpn), Smart Layer (Jpn), Benzini (Aus), Garlingari (Fr), Quechua (Arg), Flame Hero (NZ), Eastern Express (Ire), Big Orange (GB), Silverwave (Fr), Helene Happy Star (Ire), Anticipation (Ire).
Click for the chart and VIDEO. PPs. Click for the free catalogue-style pedigree.


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