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Theurgist works his magic in Listed Keiyo Stakes


Progressive dirt sprinter Theurgist completed back-to-back victories over six furlongs at Nakayama with a cosy success in the Listed Keiyo Stakes on Sunday, 7 April.

A five-length winner of the Bloodstone Stakes 15 days earlier, the Noriyuki Hori-trained five-year-old showed good speed from the gates to settle in a length second on the outside of Jasper Win.

Theurgist cruised up to hit the front a furlong and a half from home and soon skipped clear of his rivals under minimum urging from Yutaka Yoshida.

Fern Hill ate into Theurgist’s lead close home, but the Ghostzapper entire was always in control and crossed the line a comfortable neck in front.

Harry Sweeney, President of Godolphin in Japan, said: “Theurgist is an exciting horse, who won well today. In his early career, he had to do it the hard way as things didn’t work out for him on his first JRA run. Ultimately, we had to avail of a back door by sending him into local racing, where he won three races before then returning to the JRA.

“He has proven his ability since coming back to the JRA with four wins, including a Stakes race last time out and now a Listed race. His best distance is clearly six furlongs, but unfortunately there aren’t many races on the JRA over six furlongs for dirt horses.

“Theurgist may run in the Jpn G3 Cluster Cup, which is an NAR/JRA exchange race at Morioka in August, and then his long-term plan is the Jpn G1 JBC Sprint in November. If that all goes well, then we are dreaming of the G1 Golden Shaheen next year, please to heaven.”