03/26/2017 3:34PM

Japan: Seiun Kosei scores in Takamatsunomiya Kinen

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Seiun Kosei won the first graded stakes of his career, and sixth race overall, in Sunday’s Grade 1 Takamatsunomiya Kinen at six furlongs on turf at Chuyko Racecourse in Japan.

The $1.733 million race was the first Grade 1 turf race of the year in Japan.

Seiun Kosei (7-1) closed from fourth with a wide rally to win by 1 1/4 lengths over Let’s Go Donki in the field of 18. Let’s Go Donki, the winner of the Japanese 1000 Guineas in 2015, was the 4-1 second choice and finished a neck in front of Red Falx, the 5-2 favorite who won the Grade 1 Sprinters’ Stakes last fall.

Seiun Kosei, who was ridden by Hideaki Miyuki, was timed in 1:08.7 on a good turf course. Miyuki told Japan Racing Association publicity that he got to know the colt in a recent training session.

“I was told by the trainer that he handled the soft ground well,” Miyuki said. “He ran comfortably in the forward position.

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“He felt really good from the beginning, and although I was afraid that I may have slipped him out too early, I believed in him and urged him to go until the wire.”

A 4-year-old colt by Admire Moon, Seiun Kosei has won 6 of 15 starts for owner Shigeyuki Nishiyama and trainer Hiroyuki Uehara. Seiun Kosei has won three of his last four starts, all in turf sprints. The only loss in that span was a second by a neck in the Grade 3 Silk Road Stakes at Kyoto on Jan. 29.