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Regaleira wins this year’s Hopeful Stakes at Nakayama.
Race favorite Regaleira won this year's Hopeful Stakes with a race record time of 2:00.2 to become the first filly to win the race since it was elevated to G1 in 2017 and gave her sire Suave Richard his first G1 title. Breaking her maiden in her debut start (Hakodate, 1,800m) in July, she came off a third among a mixed field in the Ivy Stakes (Listed, 1,800m) on October 21. This win gave her trainer Tetsuya Kimura and jockey Christophe Lemaire their eighth and 50th JRA-G1 wins, respectively, following their Japan Cup victory with Equinox a month ago. Shunsuke Yoshida, representative of Sunday Racing, who owns Regaleira, stated that they will likely race her in the Satsuki Sho (Japanese 2000 Guineas) next spring.
Breaking slowly from an outside draw, Regaleira settled third from the rear, edged forward traveling two wide in the backstretch and rounded the last two corners wide to make bid. Though meeting traffic at early stretch, Christophe Lemaire steered the Suave Richard filly further out for a clear path, from where she unleashed an explosive burst of speed, flying past her rivals with the fastest finishing drive and overtaking the front 100 meters out to claim the race.
"We had to travel near the rear because the filly missed her break, but she was very calm after that. She responded well at last two corners and, after I steered her to the outside, displayed an incredible late charge. I look forward to her performances next year, and I think a longer distance would also suit her," commented Christophe Lemaire.
Second pick Shin Emperor broke smoothly out of the gate and traveled in good position, around fourth from the front. Advancing position turning the final corners, the Siyouni chestnut was at the top when entering the lane, further accelerate in the stretch and, though overtaken by the fast-closing winner 100 meters out, bested the rest of the field by two lengths to secure a runner-up seat.
13th choice Sunrise Zipangu advanced to third after breaking sharply and eased back to around fifth in the backstretch. The Kizuna colt angled out for the final turn and closed in on Shin Emperor while drifting to the inside in the stretch but was overtaken by the eventual winner in the last 100 meters, then found little room behind the runner-up to finish third.
4th: (4) Admiral Ship—settled around 13th on rails, launched 2nd fastest late drive to finish
5th: (18) Mr G T—raced 3-wide around 13th, struggled to find clear path on inner stretch,
quickened in last 100m
6th: (10) Sirius Colt—saved ground around 10th, remained in contention until 100m out
7th: (11) Shonan la Punta—chased leaders in 3rd, showed effort but no match for top finishers
8th: (8) In the Moment—settled around 6th, ran gamely until 100m out
9th: (12) Di Speranza—traveled around 10th, showed brief effort while meeting traffic 200m out
10th: (2) Velociraptor—set pace, showed tenacity after surrendering lead, weakened in last 100m
11th: (14) Hortobagy—trailed in rear, circled wide, unable to reach contention
12th: (15) Win Maximum—sat 3-wide in 8th, failed to respond
13th: (7) Ten Ace One—positioned near rear, never fired
14th: (16) Century Bond—raced 3-wide in 11th, showed little
15th: (3) Ammothyella—stalked leader in 2nd, faded after final corner
Fail to Finish: (9) Tariff Line—traveled around 5th on rails, pulled up due to fracture
Scratched: (1) Gonbade Qabus—sickness
Scratched: (17) Sunrise Earth—lameness in his left foreleg