Exciting Le Vent Se Leve takes one step closer to Kentucky
Report: Japan, Wednesday
Kawasaki: Zen Nihon Nisai Yushun (Grade 1) 1m, dirt, 2yo
The second leg of the 'Japan Road to the Kentucky Derby', the Zen Nihon Nisai Yushun, was won in impressive style by hot favourite Le Vent Se Leve (Kiyoshi Hagiwara/Mirco Demuro) at Kawasaki racecourse.
Le Vent Se Leve was slowly away in Japan's most significant juvenile dirt race but made eyecatching headway on the turn for home and stormed down the straight under a motionless Demuro to extend his unbeaten run.
Demuro said: "I am very happy. He is an excellent colt. As usual, his start was no good but he showed his good turn of foot in the stretch. He is very clever and easy to handle."
One spot in the 2018 Kentucky Derby will be awarded to the horse that accumulates the most points in the three-race series, encompassing the Cattleya Sho, the Zen Nihon Nisai Yushun and the Hyacinth Stakes.
Le Vent Se Leve earned ten points for his victory at Kawasaki but the winner of the Hyacinth Stakes at Tokyo in February will accrue 30 points.
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