Godolphin Win the Takamatsunomiya Kinen at Chukyo, Japan,
Fine Needle achieved a tremendous first G1 victory from 17 rivals in the six-furlong Takamatsunomiya Kinen at Chukyo, Japan, on Sunday, 25 March.
The success marked the first locally-trained G1 win in Japan with Godolphin’s silks worn.
The five-year-old Admire Moon horse, trained by Yoshitada Takahashi, broke well from the stalls under his rider Yuga Kawada and was settled in mid-division towards the outside as the leaders blazed off.
Fine Needle raced in ninth entering the straight and came with a strong run on the outside to lead in the final stride for a thrilling nose win over Let’s Go Donki in 1m 8.5s on firm turf.
Harry Sweeney, President of Godolphin in Japan, reported: “That was very exciting and it is fantastic to have a G1 winner in Fine Needle.
“We were watching just beyond the winning line and were not sure he had won or not until seeing a replay.
“It is a big day for Godolphin and Darley in Japan as we formally switched silks from the red and white to Godolphin’s last weekend.
“We will see how Fine Needle is before making plans for the future. There are limited opportunities for top sprinters in Japan – there isn’t another G1 here until the autumn.
“He has an entry in the G1 Chairman’s Sprint Prize (6f turf Sha Tin) in Hong Kong on April 29 and there is a good chance he could go for that race all being well.”
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