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Posted 2017-10-29 10:58:34  
Kitasan Black Takes Emperor's Cup, Tenno Sho (Autumn)

Kitasan Black Captures Tenno Sho Double in Same Year
The pouring rain and soft ground did not hinder the outstanding performance of this year’s victor Kitasan Black whatsoever, as the multiple G1 winner added his sixth victory at the highest level to his stellar record. The Black Tide horse has now become the fifth horse in JRA history to capture both the Tenno Sho (Spring) and (Autumn) in the same year, and the second to score three Tenno Sho titles overall. Kitasan Black is headed for the Japan Cup in aim to defend his title and is scheduled to conclude his racing career with his last start in the year-end Arima Kinen. Trainer Hisashi Shimizu and jockey Yutaka Take celebrate their first JRA-G1 win since their Tenno Sho (Spring) victory with the bay earlier this year, while this is the sixth G1 overall title for Shimizu and 74th for Take. Take now has achieved an outstanding record of claiming a Tenno Sho double in the same year for the third time.

The field got underway with Lord Vent d’Or setting the pace while most of the runners were kept one lane off the rail to avoid the deeper going in the rain-soaked track. Breaking slowly, Kitasan Black traveled in mid-pack, a position farther behind than his usual seat close to the pace, but kept his calm and gradually made headway at the third corner. Waiting for his rivals to make their bids as they spread out at the final turn, the race favorite surged to the front from the inside, taking over the lead in early stretch and ran the remaining two furlongs all the way to the line with good speed while holding off the fast closing Satono Crown by a neck.

“He was a bit too eager today and missed his break. The going didn’t seem to bother him so I decided to take the path near the rails at the last corner. He responded beautifully in the stretch and before we knew it, we were at the front. He weakened a little during the long drive but held on well. I am hoping to be in the winner’s circle with him two more times,” jockey Yutaka Take commented after the race.

Coming off his G1 Takarazuka Kinen victory in June and sent off second pick, Satono Crown was settled a couple of lengths in front of the winner in mid-division earlier and gradually gained in on the tiring front runners rounding the last two corners. As he entered the lane in third, the dark bay pinned Greater London 300 meters out and with a good finishing kick, came looming up on the inside of Kitasan Black but was a neck short to finish second.

Rainbow Line, 13th choice in a field of 18, entered the stretch close to the favorites after also sitting in mid-pack and ran strongly, tagging Greater London before the furlong pole but was unable to cut the gap from there and finished 2-1/2 lengths in third.

Other Horses:
4th: (4) Real Steel―stalked leaders in 4th, showed tenacious run but detached by top 3 finishers in last 200m
5th: (15) Makahiki―positioned near rear, showed belated charge, timed 2nd fastest over last 600m
6th: (9) Soul Stirring―raced wide around 7th, outrun turning corner, showed effort, even paced in last 200m
7th: (6) Decipher―broke poorly, traveled 2nd from rear, ran willingly at inner stretch and improved position
8th: (1) Sakura Empereur―chased leader in 2nd, angled wide, passed tired rivals in last 200m
9th: (13) Greater London―unhurried early, made headway, led at final corner, fell back
10th: (12) Staphanos―ran outside winner early, ran gamely until 200m out, weakened thereafter
11th: (5) Yamakatsu Ace―traveled around 8th, showed brief effort at stretch, never threatened
12th: (10) Mikki Rocket―raced wide around 4th, gradually dropped back, unable to reach contention
13th: (3) Neorealism―sat 5th, showed effort until 200m out, weakened thereafter
14th: (11) Lord Vent d’Or―set pace, ran out of steam at final corner
15th: (18) Sciacchetra―settled wide in 3rd from widest draw, failed to sustain bid before final corner
16th: (16) Cadenas―ran wide around 14th, never a threat
17th: (17) One and Only―traveled wide around 13th, unable to reach contention
18th: (14) Satono Aladdin―trailed in rear, no factor

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