2023 Kyoto Kinen & Kyodo Tsushin Hai Odds & Predictions

Saturday and Sunday sees some exciting graded action from Japan with a top class Grade 2 and two highly competitive Grade 3’s including Queen Cup and & Kyodo Tsushin Hai. It will be fascinating to see if African Gold can come back to form and take the 2023 Kyoto Kinen for the second year in succession.

Queen Cup

Grade 3 – Purse $545,000 – 1600 meters (1 mile) – Turf – 3-Year-Olds Fillies & Mares

Made It Mum is one of the more experienced horses in the line-up, and looks to be progressing really well after winning her last two starts in stakes company.

Moryana is one of the least exposed fillies in the race and after winning her first two starts, she was pitched in at the deep end against Grade 1 rivals in the Hanshin Juvenile Fillies Stakes back in December. She was well beaten on that occasion, but gets some nice class relief today and has a solid chance of hitting the board.

Uvarovite was second on debut behind another of today’s rivals Doe Eyes and has since broken the maiden tag and taken a step forward when hitting the board in a stakes race back in November. She could well take another step forward off the three-month layoff.

Another couple of runners that met on debut were England Eyes and Harper, and it was the former who came out on top on debut. Harper has since gone on to win over this distance to break the maiden tag on her second start and she may come out on top over this distance.

The likely favorite here will be Doe Eyes who although beaten by another of today’s rivals, Moryana on her second start, has since taken her form to a different level finishing third in the Grade 1 Hanshin Juvenile Fillies Stakes. That is the best piece of form on show.

Others that look of interest for exotics include Brown Wave, Gold Recorder and Mississippi Tesoro.

Queen Cup Odds & Betting Pick

HorseJockeyOdds by JazzSports
On the BlossomA.Tsumura+7970
Made It MumK.Motohashi+18700
MoryanaM.Muto+690
Ric StarK.Miura+1560
UvaroviteT.Yokoyama+1470
England EyesK.Yokoyama+2360
Doe EyesH.Yoshida+100
Nishino CashmereT.Nagano+5030
HarperY.Kawada+550
Grand BernadetteK.Matsuyama+2160
Mikatte YondeiiM.Matsuoka+65300
Gold RecorderK.Tanaka+65300
AspaldikoH.Tanabe+3270
Brown WaveT.Ono+2470
UmbrailC.Lemaire+760
Mississippi TesoroK.Tosaki+2160

Plenty here with chances of grabbing a slice of the purse and Made It Mum looks a likely candidate to hit the board after winning her last two in stakes company. This is a step up the class ladder, but that should not be a major issue.

The main pick here has to be DOE EYES who has done nothing wrong since breaking the maiden tag on debut. Two board finishes in Grade 3 and last time in Grade 1 company show she is improving rapidly and she gets a confident vote.

Harper and England Eyes should be battling for a slice underneath.

Kyoto Kinen

Grade 2, Purse $915,000 – 2200 meters (1 mile 3 furlongs) – Turf – 4-Year-Olds and Up

We have to start with last year’s winner African Gold who will be trying to win this once again but will surely face a tough battle this time around. The horse is certainly not in anywhere near the same form as last year and will be coming up against Efforia and Do Deuce who are both genuine Grade 1 performers who are both on the class drop.

Efforia won two Grade 1’s at the end of 2021 and ran three times in 2022, all in Grade 1 company. He failed to hit the board in each of those runs, but was a fine fifth in the Arima Kinen Stakes on Christmas Day last year and this is a significant class drop.

Do Deuce was last seen running in the Prix De L’Arc De Triomphe in October and was clearly outclassed there. He won the Japanese Derby three starts back and was a fine fourth two-back in the Group 2 Prix Niel. This is a class drop from those last three runs and he could be the chalk here.

Win Mighty has been progressing well at this level and is another beaten in Grade 1 company in her last two starts. The cut-back in distance might not be ideal, but she is sure to be closing strongly as they head for the wire.

Pradaria was behind Do Deuce in the Japanese Derby, but hit the board in this spot last time, while Killer Ability is another that ran in the Japanese Derby and he showed he is in good nick with a win in Grade 3 company last time out.

The one horse in the field who could take a step forward on this first attempt at graded stakes company is Impress, who has won four from seven career starts. He has won his last two in stakes company and looks a good option for exotics players.

2023 Kyoto Kinen Odds & Betting Prediction

HorseJockeyOdds by JazzSports
Matenro LeoN.Yokoyama+1290
Last DraftM.Matsuoka+9600
Win MightyR.Wada+790
African GoldK.Kokubun+2330
King of DragonM.Iwata+2330
Unicorn LionR.Sakai+1120
Meiner FanrongH.Kawasu+9600
PradariaK.Ikezoe+710
Killer AbilityB.Murzabayev+710
EfforiaT.Yokoyama+480
ImpressK.Sameshima+1520
Do DeuceY.Take+160
Scar FaceY.Iwata+4750

This is a classy Grade 2, and Efforia has run well on his last three starts against tougher and looks sure to be involved in the finish. He should be able to secure a board finish.

We could get a bit of a shock here, and we like the chances of Impress to run well. The cut-back in distance is not ideal, but with the two favorites probably being short on the boards, this one could be a very nice price on the boards, and looks a decent “across the boards” pick.

Of the others then Do Deuce and Win Mighty should definitely be in the shake-up.

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Kyodo Tsushin Hai

Grade 3 – Purse $585,000 – 1800 meters (1 mile 1 furlong) – Turf – 3 -Year-Olds

Phantom Thief looks like being sent off as the chalk here after a fine fourth in the Grade 1 Hopeful Stakes. That was only his third career start and first attempt at graded stakes company. He was far back as they entered the home stretch but closed strongly all the way to the wire and this cut-back in trip should not be an inconvenience.

Two more in here that have Grade 1 and Grade 2 form are Danon The Tiger and Labeling and both are very lightly raced and are sure to improve.

Danon The Tiger broke the maiden tag on his second start before a first venture into graded stakes company saw him finish second, while Labeling also broke the maiden tag on debut but may have achieved more on his second start when finishing third in the Grade 1 Asia Hai Futurity.

Labeling traveled just behind the speed, but closed well to the wire, and the extra furlong gives plenty of upside.

We have plenty of unexposed horses here with Touch Wood and Tastiera both stepping up the class ladder after breaking their maiden tags the first time out.

Corepetiteur is another who is progressing well having won two from three. Those races have come at a lower level, but he deserves his shot at this step up the class ladder.

Kyodo Tsushin Hai Odds & Betting Pick

HorseJockeyOdds by JazzSports
Danon the TigerY.Kawada+260
CorepetiteurK.Matsuyama+1260
Kyoei BrisaK.Miura+12100
Season RichH.Yoshida+1650
Touch WoodT.Bachelot+160
TastieraY.Fukunaga+780
Silver SpadeY.Yoshidascratched
Phantom ThiefC.Lemaire+490
LabelingM.Demuro+840
Stahl WindK.Tosaki+6010
Win OdinK.Yokoyama+1940
Lord PrayerH.Tanabe+12100

Phantom Thief produced a top-class performance on only his third start and gets some nice class relief today and should be difficult to keep off the board. The same can be said of LABELING and it is this one that gets a narrow vote for the win.

Danon The Tiger ran well on his third start to finish in the second spot and he can once again hit the board.

Touch Wood, Tastiera, and Corepititeur look the others of interest and they should all be in the firing line for a shot at this valuable prize.

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