Amante Bianco the flying white wins an early race in the “Japan Road to The Kentucky Derby at Tokyo Racecourse on Friday. Here the 2023 Cattleya Stakes Recap!
Listed Stakes – Purse $208,000 – 1 mile – Dirt – 2-Year-Olds
The Kentucky Derby held in May each year is one of the highlights of the US racing calendar.
Known as the most exciting two minutes in sport or the “Run For The Roses” it draws huge crowds and from this time on there are many trials where a points system is in place for the home-trained horses.
They’ll be trying to gain points to secure one of the coveted twenty starting positions, and we’ll be updating our readers on that on a regular basis.
Since 2017, the Japan Road To The Kentucky Derby has been in place, where one horse from Japan is guaranteed a spot by accumulating the most points.
Friday saw Amante Bianco take 10 points in that quest as he defeated a field of fifteen other two-year-olds.
The son of American stallion Henny Hughes reminds us of the 2023 Breeders Cup Classic winner White Abarrio in the way in which they are both a bright white color.
Time will tell if Amante Bianco will reach anywhere near the ability of that American superstar but to win a Listed Stakes on just his third career start shows there is plenty of upside to come.
He broke the maiden on debut over seven furlongs and then stepped up on that to finish third on his stakes debut. He was well bet here though and the win was expected.
As the field left the gates for this mile test, he was a step slow but soon raced up to take up a stalking position in the sixth spot behind the pace horse More Than Once.
He met traffic problems at the end of the backstretch, having to be reined back and off the inside rail so he could get a clear run as they hit the top of the stretch.
He was still behind a wall of horses as they hit the top of the stretch and was pitched into the five-lane by Christophe Lemaire to make his challenge.
The response was not immediate but he powered to the lead with fifty yards to the wire and was clearly the best horse in the race.
There is no doubt that he will stay a bit further than this, which bodes well for the Kentucky Derby if he emerges as Japan’s top candidate when we come round to springtime in Kentucky.
He had the 150/1 longshot George Tesoro back in second with Unquenchable closing very late for the third spot, and Star Turn in fourth.
The early leader More Than Once ended up fifth beaten just two lengths and is one for the notebook if cutting back in distance next time.
2023 Cattleya Stakes Race Payouts
|1. Amante Bianco
|2. Goerge Tesoro
WINNING TIME: 1 min 37.50 secs