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Three-year-old Omega Perfume claims first G1 title in Tokyo Daishoten

Omega Perfume beat a pair of five-year-olds to notch his first Grade 1 title.

Three-year-old Omega Perfume claims first G1 title in Tokyo Daishoten

Omega Perfume beat a pair of five-year-olds to notch his first Grade 1 title.

OMEGA PERFUME winning the Sirius Stakes at Hanshin in Japan.
OMEGA PERFUME winning the Sirius Stakes at Hanshin in Japan. Picture:Japan Racing Association

Following the success of his fellow three-year-old class against the elders, Omega Perfume Horseform beat a pair of five-year-olds to notch his first Grade 1 title in the year-ending Tokyo Daishoten (2,000m, dirt) on Dec. 29 at Oi Racecourse.

Sent out as the fan's third pick, Omega Perfume travelled from the rear of the pack, eyeing the two race favorites – Gold Dream Horseform and K T Brave Horseform – running in front of him. With Superstition and Apollo Kentucky dictating the front with a rather quick pace, it came down to a test of stamina and late-speed in the final stretch.


Second favorite K T Brave, back from a disappointing 11th-place finish in the Champions Cup as the second favorite, hit the front at the 200 meter pole, but the two favorites could not keep up with Omega Perfume's late speed in the final stages, with Gold Dream finishing 3/4 lengths behind for second and K T Brave another 1 1/2 lengths behind for third.

Sound True, last year's runner-up and currently registered as an NAR racehorse, came in fourth, with JRA's Acorn rounding out the board in fifth.

Omega Perfume, a three-year-old by Swept Overboard, has five wins and two seconds from nine career starts, earning just over JPY116 million. His worst career run was a fifth in the Champions Cup in December, the only time he missed the first three. He is owned by Reiko Hara and was bred by Shadai Farm.

Jockey Mirco Demuro, who had ridden Omega Perfume in his first four starts, won his third Grade 1 just in the month of December. Rookie trainer Shogo Yasuda, a son of Grade 1 trainer Takayuki Yasuda (Lord Kanaloa, Transcend, to name a few), picked up his first Grade 1 title in his debut year.

The dirt top-class races have traditionally been the stage for the older horses. The 2018 season, however, may have been the year of a generational change, with 3-year-old Le Vent Se Leve dominating the Grade 1 Champions Cup and Omega Perfume outdueling the reigning JRA Dirt Horse of the Year, Gold Dream.

“It feels great,” Demuro said. “It was my first ride in a while, but I knew all along that he was a great horse. He travelled well today and felt like he had matured. We had K T Brave and Gold Dream in front of us, so it was a good position to be in. It was a ground-saving trip, so he had a lot left in the tank at the finish. When I rode him the first time, I knew he would win a Grade 1, so I'm looking forward to his future.”


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