Sumomomomomomomomo, a Japanese racehorse that recently claimed her maiden win, has captured the hearts of fans and celebrities for her name, and for the same reason, was dubbed “the horse that makes commentators cry”.
The three-year-old mare claimed her victory at Tokyo’s Oi racecourse a couple of weeks ago and has since become somewhat of a celebrity on Japanese social media. Sumomomomomomomomo stayed in the middle of the pack for most of the race, before surging to the front in the final stretch, while commentators hollered the filly’s tongue-twister name in excitement.
Her name, which is based on a Japanese tongue-twister, “Sumomo mo momo, momo mo momo, sumomo mo momo mo momo no uchi”, that literally means “Plums are peaches, and peaches are peaches, and plums and peaches are both types of peaches,” intrigued people, and now everyone is rooting for her to win, just so they can hear race commentators struggling to say Sumomomomomomomomo.
Just listen to NHK announcer Izumi Tanaka commentate the horse’s recent victory, and you’ll understand why people want to hear more of it.
“She finally won — the horse with the name that makes race commentators cry!” one person wrote on Twitter.
“I’m finally able to say it properly,” someone else wrote.
But, in any case, the horse’s jockey, Naoki Machida, said the ardent support from the fans contributed to the victory.
Horse racing is immensely popular in Japan, but, before her November 2nd win, Sumomomomomomomomo’s insane popularity, which sported pink blinders, was determined only by her name.
The National Association of Racing, one of the two major associations that organize races in Japan, earned $8 billion in 2020, The Japan Times reported and, in 2019, CNN reported that the local industry is worth around $25.6 billion.
Sumomomomomomomomo’s first victory in 12 races made her already high popularity among Japanese horse racing fans skyrocket, and there are now gadget and peluches being sold at the Tokyo race track, with fans outside the capital that have already requested that they be made available online as well.
“Sumomochi” desserts, a play on the horse’s name and the Japanese delicious snack mochi, have also become insanely popular.
Images from web – Google Research