Trying to win the Tenno Sho (Spring) (Jpn-I) for the third time after two previously unsuccessful attempts, Gold Ship finally broke through to win the race May 3 at Kyoto.
Danon Shark came out on top in the Mile Championship Nov. 23 at Kyoto, earning his first group I win in stakes record time after a tooth-and-nail stretch battle with Fiero.
Toho Jackal smashed the Kyoto course record by nearly two seconds in winning the 75th Kikuka Sho (Jpn-I, Japanese St. Leger), the final jewel in Japan's Triple Crown Oct. 26.
Shonan Pandora nabbed the final jewel of Japan's Triple Crown for fillies in record time, striking at 10-1 odds in the Shuka Sho (Jpn-I) Oct. 19 at Kyoto while denying Yushun Himba (Jpn-I, Japanese Oaks) winner Nuovo Record.
Yutaka Take became Japan's first jockey to win 100 grade or group I races! view slideshow
Meisho Mambo wore down tiring front-runner Sekisho with a ground-gobbling outside rally and captured the Shuka Sho (Jpn-I), the final jewel in Japan's Triple Crown for fillies, Oct. 13 at Kyoto.
In addition to Keeneland graduate American Winner capturing a race on the Japan Cup card at Tokyo Racecourse, Barretts sales grad Shigeru Acerola won an allowance race at Kyoto by 1 1/2 lengths.
Sadamu Patek held back determined favorite Grand Prix Boss and captured the Mile Championship (Jpn-I) on Nov. 18 at Kyoto for a breakthrough win at the top level.
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.
Rainbow Dahlia won the Queen Elizabeth II Commemorative Cup-Diamond Jubilee (Jpn-I) on Nov. 11 at Kyoto, narrowly denying three-time Japan filly Triple Crown runner-up Verxina a breakthrough win.
Holding the rare distinction as runner-up in all three jewels of Japan's Triple Crown for fillies, Verxina will try for a break through in the Queen Elizabeth II Commemorative Cup (Jpn-I) Nov. 11 at Kyoto.
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.
Gentildonna narrowly completed a sweep of Japan's Triple Crown for fillies Oct. 14 with a nose victory over rival Verxina in a thrilling finish to the Shuka Sho (Jpn-I) at Kyoto Racecourse.
A record crowd of nearly 137,000 people at Kyoto Racecourse Oct. 23 witnessed Japan's sixth Triple Crown winner, the first in 11 years and only the second to have captured the series unbeaten.
TVG will present six live racing telecasts from Japan beginning Sept. 10 as part of an agreement between TVG and the Japan Racing Association (JRA) granting TVG exclusive Japanese racing telecast and advanced deposit wagering rights in the U.S. Racing will air from 10 p.m.-midnight PT.
Japan's Admire Groove held off favored country mate Still in Love for a nose victory in Sunday's Queen Elizabeth II Memorial Cup (Jpn-I), giving jockey Yutaka Take an unprecedented third straight win in the race for fillies and mares at Kyoto Racecourse.
She's Japan's new star and she's being touted as perhaps the best female Thoroughbred in the world. The Irish-bred Fine Motion (Danehill -- Cocotte, by Troy) wowed packed stands again, extending her number of winning runs to a perfect six with a victory Nov. 10 in the country's top distaff, the 2,200-meter Queen Elizabeth II Cup (Jpn-I) at Kyoto.
Foreign-breds ran away with the top three places of the Mile Championship (Jpn-I) Nov. 18 at Kyoto Racecourse, with Irish-bred Zenno El Cid (Caerleon--Embla, by Dominion) cruising to a three-quarter-length win.
In a year with no consistent standout emerging to rally behind, the Kikuka Sho (St. Leger, Jpn-I) on Oct. 21 capped Japan's triple crown series with yet another surprise ending that left fans shaking their heads in dissatisfied disbelief.
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