05/25/2007 12:00AM

Fusaichi Ho O gets stamina test


Fusaichi Ho O will have his stamina tested in the $2.8 million Tokyo Yushun, or Japanese Derby, on Sunday when a full field of 18 will line up at Tokyo Racecourse for the world's richest race for 3-year-olds.

By the the 2001 Japanese Derby and Japan Cup winner, Jungle Pocket, and out of a Sunday Silence mare, Fusaichi Ho O is trained by Kunihide Matsuda for Fusao Sekiguchi of Fusaichi Pegasus fame. The winner of his first four starts, all at nine or 10 furlongs, he expressed his desire for more ground when he was a fast-finishing third to Victory and Sun Zeppelin in the 1 1/4-mile Japanese 2000 Guineas on April 15. One more jump and he would have collared them both, so the additional quarter-mile of the Derby should suit Fusaichi Ho O to a T.

In addition to the first and second finishers from the Guineas, Fusaichi Ho O must contend with Tascata Sorte, the recent winner of the 1 3/8-mile Grade 2 Kyoto Shimbun Hai, who will break from the rail with Yutaka Take on board. Hiraboku Royal and Tosen March, the first two home in the Grade 2 Derby course-and-distance prep, the Aoba Sho, will have their supporters, as will Vodka, Japan's juvenile filly champ who was second last time in the one-mile Japanese 1000 Guineas to American Oaks possible Daiwa Scarlet.