Japanese-bred Durandal used a powerful late burst to beat Fine Motion by three-quarters of a length, winning the Mile Championship (Jpn-I) on the turf at Kyoto Racecourse on Sunday.
Durandal, the fifth choice of the public in a field of 18, settled in the pack as Gallant Arrow and Win Kluger made the early running. The 4-year-old colt made his move with less than a quarter-mile to go, storming down the final stretch to win the 1,600-meter race in 1:33.3.
The win was the first Mile Championship victory for jockey Kenichi Ikezoe and trainer Masahiro Sakaguchi. The victory earned 94 million yen.
Fine Motion, the second favorite, was 1 1/4 lengths in front of Gallant Arrow, who was third. Favored Sidewinder finished a disappointing eighth.
Eagle Café finished sixth, the top showing by an American bred. Other USA breds were Eishin Champ (7th) and Magnaten (10th).