Fukuryu Stakes the final Japanese Road to the KY Derby

The Japan Road to the Kentucky Derby concludes with Saturday’s Fukuryu Stakes at Nakayama, offers 40 Road to the Kentucky Derby points to the winner.

Fukuryu Stakes

Stakes – Purse $265,000 – 1800 meters (1 mile 1 furlong) – Dirt – 3-Year-Olds

The prolific winner Hero Call looks to secure his seventh win in nine starts, after winning the Kumotori Sho on his first start of 2023.


Hero Call has certainly been a moneyspinner for connections, and he will surely be taking a step up the class ladder sooner rather than later. This race looks to be his toughest assignment so far and he will need to be at his very best to fend off some promising recent maiden winners.

The unbeaten Mokku Mokku is one of those and he is now two from two after breaking the maiden tag first time in a newcomers event over 1400 meters (7 furlongs) at Hanshin back in December. He retained his unbeaten record when going gate-to-wire on his first run of 2023 just two weeks ago and looks sure to try and adopt the same tactics here today.

Mitono O who is a huge 60/1 plus on the morning line odds, may be one of the long shots to run well here. He broke the maiden tag first time over 1800 meters (1 mile 1 furlong) and on his second start, the cut back to 7 furlongs clearly did not suit, and that was shown when he came out on three-year-old debut stretched back out in distance to go and win comfortably. These are tougher foes he faces today, but the odds are very attractive and he should not be underestimated.

The chalk is likely to be Monde Plume. After winning a couple of races near the end of his two-year-old campaign, connections let him take a step up the class ladder to run in the Grade 1 Hopeful Stakes at Nakayama and he was easily outclassed. His first run this year was in a listed race in which he probably needed the run. He gets further class relief today but has no easy task with a number of promising foes taking him on.

Of the other runners, then Curran Alcantara, Vendaval Y Rabiar, and Dusk are sure to give good accounts.

Curran Alcantara looks like the pick of those three having won his last two over this distance after clearly finding 1400 meters (7 furlongs) too short on his two-year-old debut, and he is clearly going in the right direction.

Fukuryu Stakes Odds & Betting Picks

HorseJockeyOdds by Jazzsports
Hero Call (JPN) Taito Mori+1810
Mokku Mokku (JPN)Seina Imamura+220
Fuji Rapunzel (JPN)Takezo Nagano+7140
Monde Plume (JPN)Akihide Tsumura+1480
Till Dawn (USA)Masami Matsuoka+5930
Curren Alcantara (JPN)K Tosaki+200
Mitono O (JPN)Takuya Kowata+350
Maono Arashi (JPN)Takuya Ono+17900
Eifer Teio (JPN)Takashi Fujikake+5070
Vendaval Y Rabiar (JPN)Hironobu Tanabe+1150
Gold Balancer (JPN)H Uchida+1630
Oro Y Plata (JPN)Shu Ishibashi+1630
Dusk (JPN)Miyabi Muto+8950
Lux Frontier (JPN) Akira Sugawara+2920

Plenty in with chances here and Mokku Mokku looks like trying to go gate to wire once again, and he could be tough to peg back.

Monde Plume is the favorite but the speculative vote goes to a big price longshot and that is CURRAN ALCANTARA who needs to improve again but is clearly a horse of potential and could reward across-the-board backers.

The prolific Hero Call and Mitono O should be battling for a spot on the board and should be included in any exotics wagers.

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