Verxina led gate to wire as she struck for a repeat win in the Victoria Mile (Jpn-I) May 18 at Tokyo Racecourse.
Dual Japanese classic winner Gold Ship earned a Breeders' Cup Turf (gr. IT) berth when shaking off Gentildonna and charging past leader Danon Ballade for a clear win in the Takarazuka Kinen (Jpn-I) June 23 at Hanshin.
Four times second at the group I level in 2012, Verxina finally broke through in the Victoria Mile (Jpn-I) May 12 at Tokyo Racecourse when holding off the strong late charge of Whale Capture to prevail by a nose.
Favorite and dual classic winner Gold Ship scored a thrilling come-from-behind tour de force in the Arima Kinen (Jpn-I), Japan's season finale and all-star race Dec. 23 at Nakayama.
Familiar rivals Strong Return and Grand Prix Boss are among the early favorites for the $2,401,686 Mile Championship (Jpn-I) at Kyoto Nov. 18.
Gold Ship solidified his credentials as Japan's top 3-year-old on Oct. 21 at Kyoto when he completed a last-to-first rally in the Kikuka Sho (Jpn-I Japanese St. Leger), the final jewel in Japan's Triple Crown.
Gold Ship won the Satsuki Sho (Jpn-I), or Japanese Two Thousand Guineas April 15 at Nakayama Racecourse, a year after the Great East Japan Earthquake forced the race to be moved to Tokyo.
Calvin Borel, who won an unprecedented third Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum! Brands (gr. I) in four years while aboard Super Saver in 2010, will represent the United States in the Meydan Masters jockey competition in Dubai,
Eishin Flash stormed from mid-pack to upset the field in the $3.5 million Tokyo Yushun (Jpn-I), or Japanese Derby, before a crowd of 125,746 at Tokyo Racecourse May 30.
The torch was passed from dirt champions Kane Hekili and Vermilion when Success Brocken edged Casino Drive by a neck in record time while winning the $2.2 million February Stakes (Jpn-I) before 70,000 at Tokyo Race Course Feb. 22.
Front-running Eishin Deputy held off favored Meisho Samson by a head to win the $2.4 million Takarazuka Kinen at Osaka's Hanshin Racecourse June 29 in the final grade I race on the Japanese Racing Association spring calendar.
Most Popular Stories
- 'Pharoah' Heads Home, Next Race Undecided
- American Pharoah Takes Haskell With Ease
- Medication Among National HBPA Meeting Topics
- Records Fall on Haskell Day at Monmouth Park
- Rachel's Valentina Sparkles in Debut
- 'Maria' Upstages Champ Untapable in Shuvee
- TOBA July Member of the Month
- American Pharoah Takes the Haskell
- Sharp American Pharoah Ready for Return
- Gimme Da Lute Dominates Real Good Deal