St Leger Winner Triumphs In 2016 Arima Kinen
Classic winning three-year-old Satono Diamond edged out Japan Cup Kitasan Black to win Sunday's Arima Kinen at Nakayama.
The win capped a big month for Satono Diamond's owner Hajime Satomi and trainer Yasutoshi Ikee after another pf their star performers Satono Crown won the Hong Kong Vase at Sha Tin on December 11.
Kitasan Black's backers would have been on good terms with themselves for much of the final furlong as the Japan Cup winner valiantly saw off a determined challenge from last year's Arima Kinen hero Gold Actor.
However Satono Diamond, winner of the Japanese St Leger in October, stayed on powerfully down the outside to confirm himself as a champion middle-distance colt.
Lemaire said: "He can be a little difficult at times but he was able to relax when I placed him behind Kitasan Black and put in a strong finish.
"He has won the Arima Kinen as a three-year-old and he is a fine colt with a lot of talent, stamina and great potential to become a strong contender in big races next year.
"I have partnered Satono Diamond since he was a newcomer and he's become a super horse.”
The Prix de l'Arc de Triomphe is likely to be on the winner's agenda next year.
Lemaire had partnered Heart's Cry to a memorable success over Satono Diamond's sire Deep Impact in the Arima Kinen in 2005.
|R10 NAKAYAMA||25 December 2016|
|ARIMA KINEN (THE GRAND PRIX) 3U , 2500m|
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