KYOTO – Yutaka Take ended a two-year Grade 1 drought as the superstar veteran won his first Mile Championship on Sunday aboard fourth choice Sadamu Patek at Kyoto Racecourse.
The 43-year-old Take hadn’t won a G1 race since the 2010 Japan Cup with Rose Kingdom. With Sunday’s victory — his 66th at the top level — Take only needs to win next month’s Asahihai Futurity Stakes to complete a career sweep of every G1 race in Japan.
“It’s good to be back,” said Take, the winningest jockey in Japan by a mile with 3,492 career victories ahead of this weekend. “I couldn’t win a G1 race the last two years but I finally got the job done.”
The 4-year-old Sadamu Patek, who captured his first G1 title, went under the wire in 1 minute, 32.9 seconds, a neck ahead of favorite Grand Prix Boss. Fifth pick Donau Blue finished third.
“The horse was in great condition,” Take said. “I thought of racing inside as soon as we drew the No. 1 post. I thought we had it in the bag halfway down the stretch. I’m happy about this win more than anyone.”