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G2 Aoba Sho bid by Montegrosso


Montegrosso (Tetsuya Kimura/Hiroshi Kitamura) steps up in class and trip for the G2 Aoba Sho over a mile and a half at Tokyo, Japan, on Saturday, 28 April. 

The three-year-old colt, from the first crop of the 2012 G1 Dubai World Cup winner Monterosso, has made three appearances over 10 furlongs in maiden races at Nakayama, most recently when scoring by three quarters of a length on 7 April.

He faces 17 rivals in the Aoba Sho, a trial for the G1 Tokyo Yushun – the Japanese Derby – over the same course and distance on 27 May, including G3 runner-up Satono Saltus plus Hanshin winners Obsession and Super Feather. 

Harry Sweeney, President of Godolphin in Japan, said: “Montegrosso broke his maiden over 10 furlongs earlier this month in quite impressive style. 

“However, he did need three outings to get into the winning way and still looked somewhat green when winning at Nakayama. 

“He was doing his very best work at the end of the race and won’t be troubled by the extra two furlongs at Tokyo.

“Nevertheless, the G2 Aoba Sho is a huge step up in class for him and it will be particularly competitive as the first two finishers are guaranteed starting berths in the Japanese Derby. 

“Many of the other 17 runners have much more track experience and boost stronger pedigrees; seven for example are sons of the great Deep Impact and three have been sired by Heart’s Cry. 

“It will be a fantastic result if Montegrosso makes the frame.”