05/29/2006 12:00AM

Meisho Samson wins Japan's derby


Meisho Samson completed a classic double at Tokyo on Sunday as he reeled in the pacesetting Admire Main to win the $3 million Tokyo Yushun, or Japanese Derby. Meisho Samson has now won the first two legs of the Japanese Triple Crown, as he had previously accounted for the 1 1/4-mile Japanese 2000 Guineas on April 16.

Admire Main had a seemingly insurmountable lead in midstretch, but Meisho Samson, the 5-2 favorite, would not be denied. His rider, Mamoru Ishibashi, had him in front at the sixteenth pole and was actually easing him down at the wire despite the narrow winning margin of a neck. The winning time for 1 1/2 miles was 2:27.90.