Japan

Oka Sho heroine Gran Alegria electric in Hanshin return

Gran Alegria wins Oka Sho in April.

"Lemaire looked like he was riding a motorbike through stationary traffic as he weaved through the field."

 

Gran Alegria capped her three-year-old season with a scintillating victory in the G2 Hanshin Cup on Saturday and gave jockey Christophe Lemaire another potential superstar.

After settling just off the speed from barrier five, Lemaire looked like he was riding a motorbike through stationary traffic as he weaved through the field in the straight, barely loosening his grip on the daughter of Deep Impact.

A five length winning margin was ridiculous given Gran Alegria didn’t get a smooth passage through and the time of 1.19.4s for the 1,400m was just 0.1s outside the track record.

 

Gran Alegria won the Japanese 1,000 Guineas in April before a fifth in the NHK Mile behind Admire Mars, the same colt she was third to in last year’s G1 Futurity Stakes.  The daughter of Deep Impact heads into her four-year-old season lightly raced and looking like a serious older miler with a record of four-from-six.

Fiano Romano was second while fellow three-year-old filly Meisho Shobul was third, with veteran sprinter Let’s Go Donki capping his career with a fourth in what was his final run.

At  Nakayama, rising star jumper Shingun Michael won the prestigious JG1 Nakayama Daishoga.