Go Army Out of Race
By Jenny Ortuoste for Manila Standard-Today, 12 May 2009, Tuesday
(Back sports page; last two paragraphs below omitted from published version)
It’s a wide-open competition for Triple Crown I honors on May 17 at Santa Ana Park in Naic, Cavite, with the withdrawal of classy chestnut colt Go Army from the first leg of the most prestigious racing event for 3YO local thoroughbreds.
Go Army (Mr. Sutter – J’Approve), bred by his owner Herminio S. Esguerra at his own Herma Farms and Stud in Lipa, Batangas, earned top honors during his juvenile campaign last year.
Despite a string of setbacks this year that marred his perfect 2YO record, Go Army is still one of the best-regarded 3YO horses in the country and was considered as one of the favourites going into this summer’s Philippine Racing Commission-sponsored Triple Crown series.
Reliable sources confirmed that Go Army connections submitted the requisite scratching form at the Philracom office today. The reason for the scratching was given as “bruised sole”, a catch-all phrase that connotes an injury, soreness, or other condition that prevents a horse from running in optimum condition.
Sources revealed that Go Army incurred an injury in one leg after running in a tune-up race last May 3 at Santa Ana Park, which he won. This was during the same racing week that saw thirteen horses injured at the track, with four of them eventually breaking down and having to be humanely destroyed. The poor track condition was blamed for Go Army’s stressed leg.
Veteran jockey Antonio Alcasid Jr., who steered Go Army to victory in the tune-up race and was declared to partner him again in the Triple Crown I, will be riding Go Army’s stablemate Go Navy instead in that race.
Two other Philracom stakes races will also be held on May 17 at Santa Ana Park. The Hopeful I, the auxiliary race to the Triple Crown, is less one competitor with the scratching of Key Joshua. The Bonifacio Mantilla-owned colt went lame after a workout last week.
In the Emerald I, the final lineup includes four horses – Tony de Ubago’s Chariot of Fire, Aristeo Puyat’s Cutting Edge, Lorraine Uy Wi’s Don Enrico, and Roberto Yutadco’s Speed Almighty. ***