THW: Horseowners Stand Firm

THE HOARSE WHISPERER By Jenny Ortuoste for Manila Standard-Today, 12 June 2013, Wednesday


Horseowners Stand Firm

The imbroglio between the horseowner’s “Tri-Organization” (“Tri-Org” for short) and the Philippine Racing Commission continues as no resolution is forthcoming for the moment.

The Tri-Org, composed of the three horseowners’ groups MARHO, Philtobo, and Klub Don Juan de Manila (KDJM), reiterated their uncompromising position in a full-page advertisement that appeared in two major daily newspapers last Monday.

Titled “An Open Letter to the President,” the horseowners called for nothing less than the resignation of the entire Commisssion – the chairman and six commissioners.

Citing unaddressed issues and unresolved challenges to the industry, including declining sales and the failure to suppress illegal bookies, the Tri-Org’s open letter also expressed the horseowners’ fear that “our industry will continue to be left behind even as the rest of the country enjoys the economic boom under [the Aquino] administration, which heralded an impressive 7.8 percent GDP growth for the first quarter of this year.”

Philracom chairman Angel Castaño Jr., meanwhile, refuted the allegations of the horseowners in various newspaper stories.

As of presstime, the horseowners and commissioners have elevated the matter to the Palace. It remains now for the President to make his decision.

Meanwhile, races continue to be held, although with fewer entries than usual, with some horseowners continuing to scratch their declared entries. Yesterday, Metro Manila Turf Club offered seven races at its Malvar track, but each race had only four entries.

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The Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office Committee on Races announced last week that in view of the current situation in the racing industry, the PCSO Silver Cup has been reset from June 9 to June 30 at the same venue, Santa Ana Park in Naic, Cavite, with the same lineup of entries as already declared.

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Palace Malice denied Kentucky winner Orb and Preakness winner Oxbow the chance of winning another Triple Crown leg by triumphing last Saturday in the third and most grueling leg of that classic series, the Belmont Stakes.

Steered by veteran jockey Mike Smith, Palace Malice was one of five horses fielded by trainer Todd Pletcher in the mile-and-a-half (2,400 meters) race.

The horse finished 12th in the Kentucky Derby and skipped the Preakness to rest for the Belmont, where he clocked 2 minutes 30.7 seconds.

Oxbow came in second 3-1/4 lengths behind, Orb third.

Palace Malice is a son of Curlin out of Palace Rumor (by Royal Anthem). The colt owned by Dogwood Stable has an illustrious sire. Curlin, at 3 (in 2007), also won the Preakness, as well as the Breeder’s Cup Classic, Jockey Club Gold Cup, Arkansas Derby, and Rebel Stakes, while placing second in the Belmont and third in the Kentucky Derby.

At 4, Curlin won the Dubai World Cup and three other G1 stakes races as well as the Jaguar Trophy Handicap in Dubai, and placed in two other G1 races.

Curlin has received two Eclipse awards – as Champion Three Year Old Male and Horse of the Year in 2007, and Champion Older Male and Horse of the Year in 2008, while setting a new North American earnings record in September 2008. His total money earned stands at $10,501,800.

Do we have their lineage here? Curlin’s pedigree has Mr. Prospector and Deputy Minister, which we already have. On Palace Malice’s dam side, I am not sure we have the Royal Anthem and Red Ransom blood. That’s something for our breeders to think about.   ***

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