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Japan Racing Preview- 10th of January 2023

Racing And Sports brings you the daily best bets from Japan's local racing.

Four meetings on the NAR circuits on Tuesday with racing from Sonoda, Urawa, Kochi and Kasamatsu. We've done the form and picked out a best bet from each card.

Sonoda Race 5- #10 Rokunen Nikumi

Whatever trainer Yukihide Matsuhira has done with this five-year-old has worked wonders, having gone winless for 23 starts prior to August and now having won his past three, all at this track and distance, and improving his rating narrowly each time. He relished the sloppy conditions to bolt in by 9 lengths last time out but his two wins prior on good tracks were excellent as well. He was sent around a $4.10 chance last start and with a few horses here coming off wins and short starting prices I think he'll be backable again.

Urawa Race 6- #4 Kitasan Epona

Keen on this daughter of the great Kitasan Black who was having her first start on the NAR under the care of new trainer Kenichi Shigeta and ran out a strong winner, sitting just off the pace and going on to score by 2 lengths. This will be a good test for her up against some in-form gallopers, including #7 Cosmo Rouge who has won his past four starts. Given Kitasan Epona has only had four career starts however, I'd expect there is plenty of natural improvement to come and her last start rating has her narrowly clear. The stable are in good form at the moment, striking at 18.9% here recently and I think that trend can continue.

Kochi Race 5- #8 Copano Carlton

This looks an ideal race for Copano Carlton who is in great recent form, winning three starts ago over this track and distance before two strong efforts over 7 f, running third in both. That takes his record on the NAR to 2 wins and 4 placings from 6 starts, and his ratings have been rock solid throughout which should hold him in good stead in this slightly easier contest. He went around at double figures last start which should mean we get a backable price again here, especially with a couple of last start winners including stablemate #5 Copano Daytona.

Kasamatsu Race 11- #8 Phantom Rouge

Interesting little race at Kasamatsu with a handful of key chances but I think Phantom Rouge might be the one. She won dominantly three starts back here over 1 m and was good two back but was just fair as favourite last start when up sharply in grade, finishing fourth. If you forgive that effort, her ratings prior have her right in the mix and this is a big drop in class. #10 Soran has some big ratings from Nagoya that would win this if he were able to recapture that form, and #1 Wonderful Life is racing in great form and also a strong danger but I think Phantom Rouge's best is good enough to win and we should get a good price.


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