05/07/2009 11:00PM

Kentucky-bred tough in Tokyo


Break Run Out, the only non-Japanese-bred horse in a field of 18, may just be good enough to land the $1.8 million NHK Mile Cup at Tokyo on Sunday, when he will use that Grade 1 contest as a prep for the 1 1/2-mile Japanese Derby on May 31.

Bred in Kentucky by Shadai Corporation, Break Run Out is a son of Smart Strike owned by U. Carrot Farm and trained by Hirofumi Toda. He was a close third in Japan's championship juvenile race, the one-mile Futurity Stakes, at Nakayama in December, and made a successful 3-year-old debut when he won the 1 1/8-mile Kyodo News Service Hai here at Tokyo on Feb. 8. Yutaka Take will be in the irons.

Second in the Futurity Stakes, Fifth Petal was seventh in the 1 1/4-mile Japanese 2000 Guineas, which was won by Unrivaled, who is favored for the Japanese Derby . His sire, King Kamehameha, won this race in 2004 before going on to victory in the Japanese Derby.

Perhaps most the most serous challenger is Red Spada, a Kazuo Fujisawa-trained son of Prix Jacques le Marois winner Taiki Shuttle who was just a half-length second to Unrivaled in the 1 1/8-mile Spring Stakes at Nakayama on March 22.