Star juvenile Contrail shows class with effortless victory in Grade 1

Hot favourite Contrail marked himself out as an exciting horse for 2020 with an easy victory in the Hopeful Stakes, the final Grade 1 of the year for juveniles in Japan.

CONTRAIL  Picture: Japan Racing Association

Racing handily, Contrail  eased through to challenge on the turn for home and moved into the lead effortlessly with just over a furlong to go. He was merely nudged out by Yuichi Fukunaga to win in a performance that shone with class.

Contrail beat Weltreisende by a length and a half with second favourite Wakea two lengths further back in third. It was a third victory in as many starts for the favourite, who had won under Ryan Moore on his previous race.

Fukunaga said: "He was really strong. I didn't have to do anything but just sit on him. He does tend to be a little keen but the training staff had conditioned him to be in a good motivated mood, so it worked well in the race. 

"He really changed his gear effortlessly but did show [he was] a little lost once up front – still a little green, and no wonder Ryan [Moore] drove him the way he did in his last run – but the colt really showed his potential towards his three-year-old campaign next year." 

Contrail, whose trainer Yoshito Yahagi landed the Arima Kinen with Cox Plate winner Lys Gracieux, was given quotes of 33-1 for the Qatar Prix de l'Arc de Triomphe by SkyBet and William Hill. 

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