Ryan Moore back in the Grade 1 groove as Salios flies to Futurity win
Ryan Moore has known plenty of big-race success down the years during his winters in Japan but Grade 1 wins have been elusive in recent seasons.
That run, tracing back to 2017, was emphatically ended on Sunday when Salios dominated his rivals in the Grade 1 Asahi Hai Futurity Stakes at Hanshin, the country's most important two-year-old race.
Given a straightforward ride, Salios was sent on early in the straight and powered clear of Taisei Vision to win in emphatic fashion.
"He's a lovely horse," said Moore. "The track ran very fast but he's a colt that's not short of pace and he was still very green on the turn so he should run even faster in the future.
"He's a big, powerful colt and when I sat on him you got the impression that he's very strong already. He should improve and be even better as he gets older, being the size he is."
Recent history suggests the son of Heart's Cry could indeed go on to make a mark at three, having broken Danon Premium's 2017 race-record time with a sizzling 1min 33sec for the mile.
Last season's Futurity hero Admire Mars defeated a high-class international field including Beauty Generation to land the Hong Kong Mile at Sha Tin seven days ago.
Moore was recording his eighth JRA Grade 1 win and did so in tandem with trainer Noriyuki Hori, with whom he enjoyed so much success in Japan and abroad with the mighty Maurice.
Salios also provided owners Silk Horse Club with the second leg of what could be a memorable treble, following on from Glory Vase's win in the Hong Kong Vase last Sunday, with Japan's reigning Horse of the Year Almond Eye due to round her season off in the Arima Kinen in a week's time.
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