THW: Jockey Kelvin’s Status Still Shaky

THE HOARSE WHISPERER By Jenny Ortuoste for Manila Standard-Today, 22 September 2010, Wednesday

Jockey Kelvin’s Status Still Shaky

Despite protracted negotiations in an effort to restore peace and harmony within the industry, Manila Jockey Club’s chairman and CEO lawyer Alfonso R. Reyno Jr. stood firm on his decision to ban jockey Kelvin Abobo from the premises of MJC’s San Lazaro Leisure Park.

However, as of presstime, the racing club has not released any notice regarding Abobo; his status is still floating and the rider has no idea when he may resume active racing or even his morning workouts with horses at the facility in Carmona, Cavite.

Several top horseowners had written to Reyno vouching for Abobo’s character. Philippine Racing Commission chairman lawyer Jose Ferdinand Rojas II had also conversed with him seeking an amicable resolution to the crisis.

The case stems from two weeks ago, when Abobo was suspended by the MJC Board of Stewards for “lack of interest” on third favorite Supreme Leader. Abobo appealed to the Philracom, as provided for by law. Upon review of the race, the Philracom review committee lifted the suspension. Whereupon MJC slapped a ban on the rider.

The New Philippine Jockeys’ Association members, appalled at the lack of guidelines and criteria in the imposition of bans, contemplated a strike for this racing week, which was averted after several industry personages stepped forward to mediate.

The jockeys have never questioned MJC’s right to ban anyone from their property. However, as riders who have a job to do on the premises, they wonder at the lack of clear criteria, the bans, they say, imposed seemingly at whim.

A jockey’s work is not confined to riding in races. His day begins at four o’clock in the morning, when he works the horses assigned to him until seven or eight o’clock. Working horses is necessary for the rider to build rapport with his mount, get to know his or her habits and quirks, perform corrective measures as necessary, and so on. That is why a total ban from premises is problematic. A jockey who is forbidden from working horses at a certain track will be unable to continue his training of the horses, and may even lose these rides should the horseowner or trainer decide to hire someone else who can proceed with the required regimen at that particular track.

That is why to place a rider on ‘floating’ status spells disaster not only for the rider, but will also cause headaches for the horseowner, trainer, and the horses. The sport of racing is synergistic system – ‘synergy’ meaning, “two or more agents working together to produce a result not obtainable by any of the agents independently.” The word comes from the Greek syn-ergos – “working together”.

In the subculture of the sport, harmonious relationships are essential for the smooth flow of activities. It is almost a dance. A misstep, and the entire pattern is thrown into disarray.

The jockeys need clear guidelines on MJC’s banning of riders and request due process in the imposition of bans. It is illogical and unjust to place a rider on ‘floating’ status. And don’t make me bring up Marxist dialectics and question whether this constitutes a class struggle – the working class against the moneyed elite.


My thanks to the Philippine Racing Club, especially AVP and racing manager Dan Valmonte who arranged a tremendously exciting Communication Research trophy race last week at Santa Ana Park in Naic, Cavite. The race was named after the social science discipline I am currently studying at the doctoral level and was meant to provide my classmates and professor from the University of the Philippines College of Mass Communication a unique communication environment experience. The visit to the track broadened the knowledge of Dr Jose Lacson and professors Bea Lapa, Rod Rivera, Julienne Baldo, and Nina Villena regarding sport communication and subcultures within mainstream society.

After I gave them tips for the first daily double (the combination Defiant-Yes Pogi paid about P22) and they collected winnings for the first time, it seems that a couple of them are hooked enough to pursue their newfound interest in the sport. That’s how some horseracing aficionados are born – after watching the races live.

The Communication Research Trophy Race, with an added prize of fifteen thousand pesos and a trophy for the owner, was won by two-leg 2010 Triple Crown winner Yes Pogi, ridden by veteran jockey Manolito Daquis, trained by Felix Lauron, and owned by Francis Lim. ***

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7 Comments on THW: Jockey Kelvin’s Status Still Shaky

  1. NiHAWmA
    23 September 2010 at 2:56 am (2854 days ago)

    Horse racing is one of the most dangerous sports. Because of the risks involved. Having a bad spill, fractures, concussions, spinal injuries and maintaining the maximum allowable weight.

    How do they vouch the character of a jockey besides his overall performace. Do they also consider as to WHY THE HORSEOWNER HAS A CHANGE OF RIDER? Why suddenly a jockey was no longer riding to the stable of the horseowner?

    It is SELF EXPLANATORY that a jockey who is a regular rider is at the same time the exercise rider which means that he has to wake up early morning. Horse owner(s) should keep their options open. They should have an ALTERNATIVE. Suppose their regular jockey had a bad spill, do you mean they have to stick to that jockey and just let their horses go for a lengthy vacation until such time their regular rider maybe able to ride again.

    Napaka suwerte ng mga hinete ngayon. Di tulad nuong araw na may REVOCATION OF LICENSE AT ONE YEAR SUSPENSION. 12, 24, 36, 72 racing days suspension will be appealed, reduced or reversed. That’s nothing. Kaya kita mo yung iba hindi natatakot magperder. Mayron po bang hinete na hindi marunong magperder? Please refer to the steward’s report.

    WILD ORCHID GOLDEN LINK. Please correct me if the jockey was given a TRO. In dismay, the horse owner sold his horse who happens to be a breeder also. Mas binigyan ng importansya yung hinete kaysa sa may-ari ng kabayo. Binigyan dapat ng kahalagahan ang may-ari ng kabayo na nagmamalasakit sa industrya. HOW CAN YOU ENCOURAGE THE INDUSTRY TO BREED NEW HORSES IF THIS WAS THE CASE?

    Heto po ang pinakamasaklap sa patakaran. Sa tingin ko po UBOD NG SAGWA. NAPAKASAGWA. “If the appeal of the jockey is denied, he can file an appeal to the Office of the President in Malacanang for reconsideration” Ayaw na ayaw ng ating Pangulong Noy Noy ang palakasan. In short, pakapalan ng pagmumukha. Paano po yung mga abusado? DAAN MATUWID ANG GUSTO NIYA, di po ba?

    May I ask please KUNG MAY PADRINO SYSTEM PO SA INDUSTRYANG ITO? It will be damaging to the integrity of the horse racing industry.

    Again, may I ask please if there is any suspended jockey who was allowed to serve his suspension abroad. Meaning to say the jockey was serving his suspension abroad while working also. Puwede po ba yun?

    May I ask please, NAIISIP PO KAYA NG HINETE ANG MGA MANANAYANG LUHAAN KAPAG SILA AY NAG-AAPILA? Naiisip po kaya ng mga awtoridad ang mga mananayang luhaan bago nila bawasan (mercy/pardon) ang suspensyon ng isang hinete?

    Interest/welfare of the betting public should be protected. Isipin po ninyo ang kapakanan ng mga mananaya hindi lang ang hinete. PLEASE.

    May I suggest if the racing clubs can post their rules (thru their website) so that the betting public is also aware of it.

  2. NiHAWmA
    23 September 2010 at 9:17 am (2854 days ago)

    ISIPIN NAMAN NINYO ANG KAPAKANAN NG MAS NAKAKARAMI. Kapakanan ng lahat pati na ang mga mananaya. Kung ang dating gobyerno ni GMA sa kanyang SONA ay ang naging palamuti ay ang bangkang papel at ang mga bata. Sa industryang ito ang palamuti ay ang mga Stakes Races. Ang mga palamuting ito ay hindi po sapat mga Sir. Horse Racing Industry, Ano po ito? Pagtuunan ng pansin.

    1. ANG LITRATO NG PHOTO FINISH na dapat naka post sa website ng Philracom at sa website ng mga racing clubs. NOT ALL racing fans can afford to go and visit the race tracks kahit magkaron pa ng shuttle bus.

    2. Ang patakaran sa tuwing nagkakaron ng DEAD HEAT FOR FIRST PLACE. Liyamado at dehado iisa lang ang dibidendo sa Daily Double Plus One, Pick 4, Pick 5, Pick 6 at Winner Take All. Why should both winners who were declared DEAD HEAT EQUALLY SHARE where their odds are not the same.

    3. Sa tuwing may INQUIRY O DISQUALIFICATION, only ONE ANGLE IS BEING SHOWN. People in the horse racing industry (regardless of their stature) should NOT be contented to ONLY ONE ANGLE. THERE SHOULD BE TWO DIFFERENT CAMERA ANGLES.

    4. BAKIT po patuloy ang bukambibig sa luob ng karerahan ang salitang KARGADO. Ang alam kong kargado ay sa pier. May drug testing program ba na ipinatutupad? Blood, urine and saliva.

    5. May mga UNDESIRABLES po ba sa industryang ito (ayon sa ginamit na salita ng racing club)? Sino o sino sino? PAANONG MAPOPROTEKTAHAN ANG MGA MANANAYA?

    6. Mayron po bang INCOMPETENT RACING OFFICIALS ang industryang ito? Hindi naman po siguro masamang magtanong kung para sa kapakanan ng industryang ito. Kailangan natin ng EFFICIENT. Hindi ko sasabihin na ISANG efficient kundi DAPAT LAHAT EFFICIENT to preserve integrity and credibility.

    7. Kung may iligal na hueteng. Ano na po ang nangyari sa KRUSADA LABAN SA ILIGAL NA BOOKIES? Kapag may iligal na bookies, ang katumbas ay isang Tax Evader. Maituturing po ba natin na isang uri ng Money Laundering.

    8. Bakit nagbago ang dibidendo sa matrix/totalizator WINKING EYE/SHIFTY ? Nang matapos ang aktwal na karera (hindi replay) ng nanalong Winking Eye at ang sumegundong SHIFTY. Ang dibidendo ay P444.00 sa bawat isang ticket. Nang ipinakita ang official results sa TV monitor ang naging dibidendo ay P443.00 na lang sa bawat isang ticket. Paki eksplika nga po para sa kapakanan ng mga mananaya. WATCH THE UNEDITED VIDEO FOOTAGES please for you to be satisfied.


    Huwag naman sanang pagtuunan ng pansin ang isyung ito LAMANG. Ang daming dapat atupagin. It should be a requirement that if public money is wagered, the general public should have the right to know. Di bale sana kung sa bulsa ng ibang tao nanggagaling ang mga pantaya.

  3. Butchoy Perey
    24 September 2010 at 5:07 pm (2852 days ago)

    Ms. Jenny O.

    Pasalamat kami sa mga tulad mo na crinicriticized ang mga mali ng racing clubs para sa mga kapakanan ng maliliit na bettors.

    More Power!~

  4. NiHAWmA
    26 September 2010 at 10:20 am (2851 days ago)

    SUPREME LEADER (after that questionable ride tsk tsk) has two consecutive impressive wins in a row (Sept.21 & Sept.25)

  5. emmanuel sarmiento
    26 September 2010 at 12:18 pm (2851 days ago)

    Ms Jenny I think the 3 mnths suspenson of Mr KB Abobo has been justified and becomes moot and academic due to 2 successive wins of Supreme Leader. It is therefore, the management of MJC and the BOS rendered the right verdict in giving penalty to Mr. Abobo. In my opinion, all the riders are duly licensed by the GAB and as professionals they have to show their talent in every racing competitions.


  6. Jenny
    30 September 2010 at 1:56 pm (2847 days ago)

    Emmanuel, the jockeys’ point is not the ban. It is the lack of clear guidelines.

  7. NiHAWmA
    4 October 2010 at 4:09 pm (2843 days ago)

    I do not know if Mandaluyong Mayor Benhur Abalos can forget when his prized horse lost miserably. I am referring to Ibarra (the heavy favorite) which was ridden by Kelvin Abobo in the Garnet II Stakes Race and checked in third behind Don Enrico.