Finally, it’s a fait accompli.
The Philippine Racing Club formally inaugurated last Sunday, January 11, its new racecourse in Cavite in a ceremony attended by PRC and Cavite local government officials as well as thoroughbred industry personalities.
Dubbed “New Santa Ana Park”, the facility covers around 70 hectares out of a 200-hectare property within the larger Saddle and Clubs Leisure Park complex. The property straddles the areas of Naic, Trece Martirez, and Tanza in Cavite.
The ribbon-cutting ceremony at the grandstand building was performed by PRC chairman Santiago Cua and Cavite governor Irineo “Ayong” Maliksi. Also on hand were the mayors of Tanza (Marcus Ashley Arayata), Naic (Efren Nazareno), and Trece Martirez (Jun Sagun). Likewise present were the corporate officers of PRC, among them independent director and former military general Renato de Villa.
Center, L-R: PRC president Solomon Cua, Naic Mayor Efren Nazareno, Cavite governor Ayong Maliksi, PRC chairman Santiago Cua, Tanza mayor Ashley Arayata. Behind them are Sta. Lucia top honcho Exequiel Robles and PRC independent director Renato de Villa.
The horseracing industry was represented by Philippine Racing Commission chairman lawyer Joy Rojas and horseowner-breeder Congressman Amado S. Bagatsing (Manila – 5th District), head of the Congress Games and Amusements Committee.
Cong. Bagatsing, Philracom chairman Rojas, PRC Director Jun Cua, and racetrack consultant Danny Flowers discuss the design of the racecourse. Above them, fans line the balcony of the grandstand building. Most are from the nearby Cavite towns and are unfamiliar with the sport.
The day was marked by two Philracom Samahang Plaridel races and the 2009 Philracom Garnet I stakes (1st leg Local/Imported Challenge series).
It was also the last racing day of the first racing week at the new track and of the new year. Trainers praised the design of the racecourse and were thankful that no accidents occurred.
According to PRC vice-president for communications Jessica Villanueva, total sales for the week exceeded P130.6 million – a notable feat considering the sparse lineup. Some races were run with only four horses competing. ***
Speech of Philracom chairman Atty. Jose Ferdinand M. Rojas II
It is my great pleasure to attend this Inauguration ceremony for the new racetrack of the Philippine Racing Club. This occasion represents not only the completion of a construction project, but the fulfillment of a grand vision for Philippine horseracing.
Much planning went into making the vision of a new racing community feasible. Resources and investments were poured in to make the plans a reality. Along the way, PRC encountered challenges and faced crises, while we of the racing industry held our collective breaths – can PRC actually pull it off?
Today we gather at this new facility where races have been running for a week. This is solid proof that, yes, PRC has indeed accomplished what they promised to do.
We welcome the New Santa Ana Park as a valuable component of Philracom’s Master Plan for Horseracing which is geared towards promoting industry growth, in line with the government’s thrust towards a strong republic.
Philracom supports this endeavor as it does all projects that contribute to the growth of the sport in particular and nation-building in general.
We trust that PRC, as an integral member of the industry, will do its best to promote racing and continue to work with all stakeholders in a spirit of harmony and cooperation to achieve common objectives.
In behalf of the Philippine Racing Commission, I congratulate the PRC Board of Directors, management, staff, and everyone who worked to make the vision a reality. Best wishes to you all!