THE HOARSE WHISPERER By Jenny Ortuoste for Manila Standard-Today, 9 February 2011, Wednesday
PCSO Freedom Cup
Racing for freedom – what’s more appropriate to commemorate a transformative event in Philippine history?
The anniversary of the ESDA People’s Power Revolution (which took place February 22-25, 1986) is in the offing and as part of the celebration, the Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office will be staging the Freedom Cup at San Lazaro Leisure Park in Carmona, Cavite, on February 27.
The race distance is 1,500 meters and is open to all 3YO local-bred and island-born horses. Handicapping will be weight for age with sex allowance: fillies to carry 52 kgs., colts 54 kgs.
Prize money totals P500,000, with P300,000 for the winner, P100,000 for the second placer, P50,000 for third, and P20,000 for fourth. The winning horseowner shall also receive the Freedom Cup trophy, while the jockey and trainer shall be given plaques. There is a breeder’s prize of P30,000 and a plaque to provide an incentive to the breeders of local Thoroughbreds.
All these preparations are part of PCSO’s mandate to support the sport of horseracing, which also provides assistance to the needy by way of charity races and through other means, besides providing jobs and contributing to agricultural development.
The registered entries as of presstime are: Magna Carta, Arvin Dugo, Hi Money, Whistler, Narra, and Yellow Citizen.
Regarding other PCSO races for the year, the agency is still firming up its plans for its proposed Special and Open Maiden races as well as the annual Silver Cup and Presidential Gold Cup, the latter being the sport’s most prestigious event.
Meanwhile, races this week are at SLLP and racing fans are looking forward to the Philippine Racing Commission-sponsored Amethyst I stakes happening there on Sunday. It’s a mid-distance stunner of 1,750 meters featuring the Philippine Sportswriters’ Association 2010 Horse of the Year, Yes Pogi.
The roan runner won two legs of the Philracom Triple Crown as a 3YO, the 38th PCSO Presidential Gold Cup, and a slew of other stakes races besides. This season, fans are eager to see if the son of Rum Tum Tiger (Storm Cat – Aly Tigress by Alydar) out of Belle Epoque (With Approval – Seaholme by Noholme from the Star Kingdom family) has what it takes to beat the field as an older horse.
The Amethyst I is the second leg of the Import/Local Challenge for 3YO and older. The other declared entries are Botbo, Dailies, Fierce Fighter, Gastambide, Juggling Act, Mini The Mouse, Mooney Money, My Promise, Our Solemn Prayer, and Wadialay Zing. ***