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2021/ 01 02 03 04 05 06 07 08 09 10 11 12

3/01  Familiar Scene

5:09 p.m. And Babbitt finished...14th place, the last. It's a familiar scene for a horse that needs to take the lead, though I hope he's not injured.

As mentioned earlier, I've given him the last chance. It would probably take some time for the horse to recover and once again show us a high performance possibly, carrying lighter weight in a handicapped race. His name will be swept away from our memory by then and a different jockey will be riding, not Uchida.

The End

Caterpillar

3/02  Cesario and Jungle Pocket

4:40 p.m. It's still fresh in our memory that Cesario has passed away last Sunday. Another great horse has passed away today. The 2001 Japanese D'erby winner, Jungle Pocket.

It's sad to see those great horse go, horses that played big roles in my horse racing life. Cesario didn't make me win but got me excited when she won the American Oaks. Jungle Pocket has won me quinella place with Dancing Color. I still remember that, as I rarely buy quinella place but had to at the time, because Jungle Pocket had been so favored and the payout would be low. So I'd decided to go for a dark horse that could finish in 3rd place, Dancing Color. I bought the quinella place for Dantsu Flame and Dancing Color and although I wasn't gonna buy anything else, couldn't resist the urge to win the D'erby even if the pyout was low and have added Jungle Pocket and Dancing Color. Such a good memory. Rest in peace.

The End

Caterpillar

3/03  Trial Races

6:10 p.m. With the start of March, horse racing entered the spring classic season and trial races are beginning from this weekend. The first of them is Tulip Stakes a trial race for Ohka-sho followed by the trial for Satsuki-sho on Sunday, Yayoi-sho Deep Impact Memorial. Personally, I'm more familiar with the name Yayoi-sho and feel uneasy about adding the title containing Deep Impact, so I've been calling it Yayoi-sho.

Fortunately or unfortunately enough, promising horses are entered in both races so I'm telling myself not to buy betting tickets this week. Yayoi-sho especially, is known to finish on the favored side generally and the expected win odds violates my rule. Unless the odds change to the unfavorable side like last week, I will not buy betting tickets, will not buy betting tickets, will not buy betting tickets. There. The repetition for my own memory.

The End

Caterpillar

3/04  Already

6:02 p.m. It's already Thursday before I know it and it's already past six before I know it... Still wondering which race to call. Perhaps Ocean Stakes has a bigger chance in the ups and downs concerning win odds, so might as try that one. But then it runs on Saturday which means I won't be able to finish my research and call the race by that time...

So the options are... no, there aren't any options, just Yayoi-sho as Tulip-sho would also be held on Saturday. Okay. Fine. I'll do it.

The End

Caterpillar

3/05  Heads nor Tails

6:50 p.m. The barrier draw has been announced but I can't make heads nor tails of it...

Danon the Kid drew post number 2 which I think was a good draw considering Yayoi-sho is a small-field race, as inner posts generally have the advantage in small-field races. However, horses starting from post number 2 have finished within 3rd place only twice in the past 10 years, while horses staeting from post number 4 have 4 times and post number 10, 5 times. So I'm wondering what to make of this. Incidentally, the possibly lucky horse starting from post number 10 this year is Schnell Meister.

In the meantime, news have been delivered that Resistencia, Indy Champ, and Danon Fantasy are entering Takamatsu-no Miya Kinen. Also, Salios and Lei Papale are planned to enter Osaka-hai. Osaka-hai might become a good race then with Contrail and Gran Alegria already announcing their entry.

The End

Caterpillar

3/06  Don't Bet

4:13 p.m. Have racked my brains but the more I think, the more it feels like Yayoi-sho would end up on the favored side. It could even finish with the top 3 favored horses... I mean, who could deny Danon the Kid? And thanks to the information revolution these days, all the horses that seemed potential to my eyes are already being favored.

Let me tell you first that if you don't want to lose money, don't bet on this race. I won't. I'm just caaling the race, that's all. That said, I'd key Danon the Kid on a wheel of One Day More, So Valiant, and Schnell Meister. Don't blame me if Titleholder comes in 2nd or 3rd.

The End

Caterpillar

3/07  Titleholder Wins

4:41 p.m. And then, Titleholder wins... Just as I cut him out.

The least blessing though, is that now I know Titleholder probably won't do well in Satsuki-sho. No, not after he's performed nearly his best today.

As for Danon the Kid, whther his performance will improve or not depends largely on his future condition (and the barrier draw, race lap, etc, you know, the usual elements I use for calling races). The horse might have peaked out or he might not have yet. His physical (and mental) state shall reveal that in a month or so.

The End

Caterpillar

3/08  Can't be Helped

5:57 p.m. This week another trial race for Ohka-sho Fillies Review will be run at Hanshin, while Chukyo takes over Kokura where a prep race for Osaka-hai Kinko-sho will be run.

Fillies Review has a large number of horses entered. I'll wait for now as I won't be able to say much before the entry is closed. Kinko-sho on the other hand is going to be another small-field race just like Yayoi-sho. It can't be helped since Daring Tact has chosen this race to be her first race this season.

What's more, Daring Tact is the most favored at the expected win odds of 1.2 as of today. It can't be helped either, as there aren't any potential rivals.

The End

Caterpillar

3/09  Pixel 5

8:14 p.m. Have been busy as Pixel 5 didn't respond to the bluetooth signal sent from a selfie stick. The signal seems to be sent according to the LED but the smartphone camera just didn't respond except once. The phone is not mine for your information, though my time has been consumed attending to this incident and haven't been able to do much including the selection of races to call this week.

Nakayama Hinba Stakes held Saturday definitely won't have a sound ending however, don't think I could call it in time for the start. Fillies' Review might be a better choice in the sense it probably won't violate my odds rule. Which also means it's not going to be an easy race to call.

The End

Caterpillar

3/10  Should Be

7:06 p.m. The race to call should be Fillies Review. Why? Because no one is sure which horse is going to win. That means if you call it right, you win.

So what am I waiting for? Should start on my research right away. But then, I have work to do and I also need to do my daily chores like housework. Time is limited and valuable. Let's put in what I can on calling this race, eh?

The End

Caterpillar

3/11  Closest to Meikei Yell

7:12 p.m. Dutifully doing my homework on Fillies Review. And I'm not surprised to see Opal Moon being the most favored as of today. So far she's the one who got closest to Meikei Yell besides Elizabeth Tower. Meikei Yell was much talked about to win Hanshin JF though she had the risk of going out of control.

As you already know, she lost control and lost against Sodashi in Hanshin JF, but proved her high potential in last week's Tulip-sho. This also backs up Opal Moon for her high potential. Still, there might be a chance to beat Opal Moon since Fillies Review is apparently a prep race for this horse aiming for Ohka-sho. I think the horse has won enough prize to enter Ohka-sho. Then, it's possible for the unfully-conditioned Opal Moon to finish in 2nd or 3rd.

The End

Caterpillar

3/12  Outer Post

6:26 p.m. The barrier draw have been announced. Opal Moon, the most favored has drawn an outer post which might not be good for this horse. Her past results (although there are only 3 races) seem to suggest she performs better from inner posts.

Horses starting from outer posts in fact, are doing pretty well in the past 10 years if not winning despite the distance loss, except for the 2015 champion Queen's Ring. The lap was tight then, which definitely must have been a follow wind for Queen's Ring. Add this up equals Opal Moon needs a tight lap to win.

Also, the weather is concerning. Forecast is threatening we're having heavy rain tomorrow. If the track condition remains soft till Sunday, it would affect the race result.

The End

Caterpillar

3/13  Managed

8:22 p.m. I've struggled, struggled for a long time but managed to call Fillies Review. I'm keying Love Kelly to try a different approach.

Am not sure how the track condition would be and one thing that's bugging me is that horses starting from inner posts haven't performed well today, despite the soft track condition and the lagging pace. This might mean that horses boosting their engines from the outside would have the advantage tomorrow, not the ones that go up front. On the wheel would be El Castillo, Paul Neyron, Blue Bird, A Shin Hiten, and Opal Moon.

The End

Caterpillar

3/14  Usual Procedures

4:25 p.m. Love Kelly sank way low in 10th place. Far off the mark, really. I hadn't even included Shigeru Pink Ruby though I thought she had a chance. What have I been doing?

On the other hand, Daaring Tact lost in 3rd place in Kinko-sho. With old Gibeon winning the race, now I regret I should have chosen Kinko-sho and focused on calling it not Fillies Review which I know damn well I'm not good at. I just wanted to try out some things and it only proved that it eats up more time and energy than I expected. Let's get back to the usual procedures.

The End

Caterpillar

3/15  How?

6:27 p.m. Looking back on Fillies Review, how could I have not bought Shigeru Pink Ruby when I'm buying Paul Neyron? How?

That remains a mystery though I should learn a lesson from this and focus on the older horses' races. But then, I can't come up with any names that would perform well in Hanshin Dai-shoten this week except for Aristoteles... As a matter of fact, I'm not even sure about Aristoteles yet either.

Think I'll go home early today, I need to get rest and a good night's sleep. Have just had a dental surgery this morning. Poor me.

The End

Caterpillar

3/16  Discouraging

7:50 p.m. The bottom left half of my face is slightly swelling from yesterday's surgery. It doesn't hurt though, thanks to my dentist's pain control.

I was going to take a look at the entry form for Hanshin Dai-shoten but the competitors seem rather discouraging that I just can't bring myself up to it. Rain is expected again this weekend which only pushes the back of Aristoteles who is already the most favored in the expected win odds. How discouraging could it become?

If there's one thing that might bring me up just a wee bit, then it's to look for horses that would advantage from soft track, I guess.

The End

Caterpillar

3/17  Still Can't Come Up

6:47 p.m. Have been looking at the entry form and still can't come up with good candidates at all... even if the track condition became soft. The entrees are so lame. Who could get close to Aristoteles when they haven't won a G3 yet?

Last year's defending champion You Can Smile is the second favored in expected win odds. And it's true the horse has finished within 3rd place 4 times out of 6, when the distance was over 3000 meters. Though the horse has been losing big for the past 2 races which hadn't happened in his career before. He finished at 14th place in his previous race, Arima Kinen 1.4 seconds behind the winner, Chrono Genesis. 1.4 seconds means 7 lengths... I can't be sure he'd do well again this year.

The End

Caterpillar

3/18  The Past Resultsp

5:43 p.m. In order to figure out whether You Can Smile could play a come back, let's take a look at the past results and see if there were horses that perfermed well in consecutive years.

There were 3 horses in te past 10 years that performed well two years in a row, Namura Crescent, Gold Ship and Cheval Grand. What they share in common is that they all perform well in long distance specifically, over 3000 meters.

You Can Smile also performs well in long distance races. This might mean You Can Smile has the chance to perform well again in Hanshin Dai-shoten. Though he'd probably need some conditions to work to his advantage in order to make a come back.

The End

Caterpillar

3/19  Can't Make up My Mind

7:13 p.m. The barrier has been announced but I still can't make up my mind.

Horses starting from the green and pink barriers have been doing pretty well from the past results, finishing within 3rd place by 60%, respectively. However, horses starting from inner posts generally do well when the track condition is soft to yielding.

Aristoteles has proven his aptitude on soft track in his previous race, so supposing he'd do well which horse would come following? Horses from inner posts or green or pink barriers? Hmmmm...

The End

Caterpillar

3/20  Spare Some Mercy

11:59 p.m. Pretty late, I know. But it's been a holiday so spare me some mercy.

The key on my wheel would be Aristoteles. I'm sorry, but it can't be helped. He won't sink lower than 3rd place even if a meteor crashes into earth. On the wheel would be Meisho Tengen, Deep Bond, Shoryu Ikuzo, You Can Smile and Dance Delight. Wish I could have skimmed a bit more. This might make me lose my money again even if I won. I'm counting on Deep Bond.

The End

Caterpillar

3/21  Meteor Didn't Crash

4:25 p.m. Perhaps I should have counted on Aristoteles, too. Maybe he thought he wasn't being trusted and got bent out of shape. Deep Bond, the one I counted on has won the race with You Can Smile in tow but Aristoteles has sunk in 7th place to stage a 120,400 yen trifecta payout.

Not to mention, this wasn't expected at all. Perhaps the meteor didn't crash into earth, it swung around our planet and went shooting some other way. That sums up to one answer. You need miracles to win big payouts.

The End

Caterpillar

3/22  Blind Eye

6:19 p.m. Keying Aristoteles, that was a blunder. He had his risks but I'd turned a blind eye to them all. This is the kind of race ai've got to win in order to move on to the next stage and I've been losing, losing, losing making the same kind of mistakes over and over. What shall I do?

Dokushozaru, the blogger (and writer of the best-seller, Dokugaku Taizen) I respect would probably say, write out what exactly were my mistakes and break them into small steps for coming up with solutions, in order to get out of the endless loop. Takamatsu-no Miya Kinen is coming up already this weekend. I must pull myself together.

The End

Caterpillar

3/23  Take Some Time

7:08 p.m. Yutaka Take has been injured with multiple fractures in his right instep and it seems it would take some time for him to recover. Due to this accident, Resistencia entering Takamatsu-no Miya Kinen will be ridden by Hamanaka, while World Premiere entering Nikkei-sho will be ridden by Ishibashi.

World Premiere is thought to enter the spring Tenno-sho, so Ishibashi will be exposed to considerable pressure I guess, not to mention Hamanaka on Resistencia as it's very likely that Resistencia would be the most favored in Takamatsu-no Miya Kinen.

Well, I'm not going to trust either of them blindly. I've learned a lesson last week. The problem is that I forget the lesson I'd learned in a short while.

The End

Caterpillar

3/24  One Horse

6:40 p.m. One horse has struck me as potential for a key horse in Takamatsu-no Miya Kinen.

Though I can't be sure yet, no, not just yet as there are too many uncertainties at this point. Tomorrow is Thursday, so I'll start the searching and when the barrier draws are announced on Friday, I will have more info, hopefully. The horse is not the most favored nor the 2nd favored as of this afternoon, for your information.

The End

Caterpillar

3/25  Exceptional Olympic

7:16 p.m. The entry has been closed for Takamatasu-no Miya Kinen while the torch runners left Fukushima for the exceptional Tokyo Olympic and Paralympic Games 2021. Since we're doing the Olympic Games after all, I'd like to support it in respect to Toshihiko Koga, the '92 Barcelona Olympics Judo champion. I knew one of his juniors from the junior high he graduated. Still remember the time she told me excitedly about the time Mr. Koga has visited her school to give a great speech. A man who made miracles. R.I.P.

Diligently working on my research, and some more interesting horses have popped up besides my key horse candidate. As a matter of fact, my would-be key horse has dropped to a bit lower position in my ranking. Will promise to do my best with the time left.

The End

Caterpillar

3/26  Outer Post

The barrier draw for Takamatsu-no Miya Kinen has been announced.

Post NumberHorse Name
1A Will a Way
2Red en Ciel
3Right on Cue
4Mozu Superflare
5Daimei Fuji
6Danon Fantasy
7Astra Emblem
8Eighteen Girl
9Indy Champ
10Lauda Sion
11Katsuji
12Seiun Kosei
13Travesura
14Danon Smash
15Maltese Diosa
16Resistencia
17Sound Chiara
18Mikki Brillante

Aw, Resistencia (Alice Synthesis Thirty) has drawn an outer post. She'd probably go up front, but will have to be prepared to have quite a loss in distance. Well, her stamina will last for a mile, so maybe it's not much to worry about. On the other hand, it could be critical for Danon Smash.

The End

Caterpillar

3/27  Nothing More

7:46 p.m. Gosh, I'm drained. I've done the best I could and nothing more could come out of me. No, not a drop.

Was torn between Lauda Sion and Indy Champ but decide to key Indy Champ. I mean, think of the rivals he's been racing against Gran Alegria, Almond Eye, Lys Gracieux... Lauda Sion is probably better with yielding tracks but you never can be sure of the track condition until the race runs. So I'm trusting you, Yuichi who wins Chukyo 1200m on a rate of 50% and keying Indy Champ.

On the wheel would be A Will a Way, Right on Cue, Mozu Superflare, Lauda Sion, and Resistencia. I'm sorry but have cut out the Danon series altogether. Have been bitten once by Tower of London, am not gonna trust a horse that has performed highly in a G1 in its recent race.

The End

Caterpillar

3/28  And Danon Smash...

4:24 p.m. And Danon Smash wins... Judging from the results, the reason Danon Smash couldn't win a G1 until recently was because of the short intervals. It was spoken of, but I didn't take it so seriously. Biased, I was.

I'd made a few changes in my trios today, and replaced Right on Cue and A Will a Way with Eighteen Girl and Mikki Brillante, though it turned out in vain. I thought the pace would be tight therefore, the race to be quite consuming and prioritized horses shortening the distance or having not performed highly in their previous race. But ends up in an average pace banking in to horses that performed well in their previous races.

As a result, the only ticket I won was the place for Indy Champ. Well, still it's better than losing it all.

The End

Caterpillar

3/29  Early Start

7:23 p.m. Leaving aside the review of Takamatsu-no Miya Kinen, have already started my research for Osaka-hai. The reason for the unusually early start is because I know I'm going to be quite tied up towards the weekend.

Wile I'm being hit by another toothache - the first in 10 months, coast looks clear for Contrail an Gran Alegria. It's a match between an advantaged triple crown winner from a frail generation and a distance-questioned older mare champion expected as post-Almond Eye. I'll have to spend my remaining time looking for a dark horse who could butt into the two.

The End

Caterpillar

3/30  Not High Pace

6:45 p.m. As you look at the past 10 years' results of Osaka-hai, you will notice that the pace has never become tight even including the years before 2016 when the race was still a G2. Maybe it's because Osaka-hai tends to end up in a small-field race, or maybe it's because of the course I'm not sure. Anyway, there hasn't been a high lap in the pst 10 years.

And six out of these 10 years, the pace have dropped into slow. Moreover, the recent 3 years after the race has upgraded to G1, have all been run in a slow pace. This seem to increase the importance of positions during the race as well as spontaneous speed.

The End

Caterpillar

3/31  Same Here

7:06 p.m. One thing everyone must be suspicious about must be whether Gran Alegria can cover the distance of 2000m or not. Same here. So I went on to search a bit on her pedigree background.

The only sibling Gran Alegria's broodmare Tapitsfly has left in this world so far is Blutgang who has already retired after winning just one race on Tokyo turf, 1800m. Blutgang's sire being Deep Impact, this might be of some reference. As for Gran Alegria's broodmare sire Tapit, the names of Testa Matta or Rabbit Run may be recalled. Both of them haven't won 2000m on turf, but have on dirt. Rabbit Run has won a G2 turf race Rose Stakes as you might already know.

Unfortunately, I couldn't pick up much from Blutgang's short career however, Testa Matta has won his first dirt G1 extending the distance from 1200m to 2000m while Rabbit Run has hit her peak performance on turf in Rose Stakes, also extending the distance from 1600m to 1800m. Wonder if this would give me some reassurance?

The End

Caterpillar