Mitsumasa Nakauchida aiming to claim first overseas Group 1 title

Serifos, trained by Mitsumasa Nakauchida, is a major contender in this year’s Hong Kong Mile.

Mitsumasa Nakauchida began his JRA training career in 2014 after accumulating over 10 years of international experience in four different countries: England, France, America, and Japan.

He has, to date, trained five individual Group 1 winners, with this year’s Japanese Triple Tiara winner Liberty Island being a notable highlight.

However, despite his successes, the 44-year-old, still relatively young within the JRA training ranks, has yet to secure a top-tier crown outside of Japan. Serifos and Prognosis represent the Nakauchida Stable in the 2023 Hong Kong International Races at Sha Tin.

Four-year-old Group 1 winner Serifos is set to compete in the Group 1 Hong Kong Mile. The son of Daiwa Major remained unbeaten until he faced subsequent Japanese Derby winner Do Deuce in the Group 1 Asahi Hai Futurity Stakes as a juvenile. Serifos finished fourth in both Group 1 races, the NHK Mile Cup and the Yasuda Kinen, during his three-year-old spring campaign. However, later in the year, he secured his first Group 1 title in the Mile Championship against older and more seasoned rivals.

This year, Serifos traveled to Dubai, finishing fifth in the Group 1 Dubai Turf and returned to domestic Group 1 action when he finished runner-up in the Yasuda Kinen behind multiple Group 1 winner Songline. Unfortunately, his last start was a disappointing eighth place finish in the Group 1 Mile Championship, failing to defend his title. This below par performance can be forgiven as it was his first race since June.

Nakauchida’s second raider is Prognosis, who is set to compete in the Hong Kong Cup. This lightly-raced five-year-old is by champion sire Deep Impact. Prognosis secured his first graded stakes title in the Group 2 Kinko Sho on just his eighth career start. On April 30th, he finished second in the Group 1 QEII Cup behind the Hong Kong champion middle distance horse Romantic Warrior, beaten two lengths.

During the summer, Prognosis secured his second Group 2 victory in the Sapporo Kinen as a preparation race for the Tenno Sho (Autumn). Following this, he hugely enhanced his reputation in JRA G1 company by finishing third behind the world’s highest-rated horse Equinox, with Justin Palace in second.

Nakauchida’s charges face stiff competition, as they will compete against the best local horses Hong Kong has to offer. Romantic Warrior and Golden Sixty are running in the Cup and the Mile, respectively. The 11-time Japan Racing Award-winning trainer is hoping to fulfil a huge career milestone on the global stage of the Hong Kong International Races on December 10th on the famous Sha Tin turf.

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