Top favorite Apapane dead-heated for first with fifth-pick Saint Emilion at the Japanese Oaks, the second leg of the Triple Crown series for 3-year-old fillies, on Sunday.
Apapane moved in from the outside in the final stretch to find herself in a side-by-side battle with Saint Emilion before the two fillies crossed the line in 2 minutes, 29.9 seconds at Tokyo Racecourse’s 2,400-meter turf track.
After a photo review, the race produced joint winners for the first time in Japan Racing Association Grade One race history.
Apapane, ridden by Masayoshi Ebina, captured her third G1 title, while Saint Emilion, with Norihiro Yokoyama aboard, won a G1 race for the first time.
“The photo review took a long time, so I was anxious to see who the winner was, ” Ebina said. “I’m glad I didn’t lose. Apapane was really smart, overcoming the distance and slightly heavy turf due to rain.”