MANILA, Philippines – Last year’s juvenile standouts brace for a battle royale when the country’s version of the Triple Crown fires off next month at Manila Jockey Club’s San Lazaro Leisure Park in Carmona, Cavite.
Princess Ella, Hook Shot, Sky Hook, Driven, Cat’s Express and Miss Brulay are tipped to slug it out for the coveted TC crown as they head the cast in the elite three-year-old thoroughbreds’ first leg on May 17 set over 1,500 meters.
All will be seeking to duplicate Kid Molave’s sweep last year.
The second leg will be held on June 14 at the Philippine Racing Club’s Santa Ana Park in Naic, Cavite, this time over 1,800 meters with the final leg, set over a punishing 2,000-meter distance, is set July 12 at the Metro Manila Turf Club’s Metro Turf Racecourse in Malvar, Batangas.
The three-leg series is patterned after the US Triple Crown with its three legs comprised of the Kentucky Derby, the Preakness Stakes, and the Belmont Stakes, also with progressively longer distances.
The series was launched in 1978, with Native Gift winning the first two legs and Majority Rule denying him the sweep. There have been only 10 Triple Crown champions since then: Fair and Square in 1981, Skywalker (1983), Time Master (1987), Magic Showtime (1988), Sun Dancer (1989), Strong Material (1996), Real Top (1998), Silver Story (2001), Hagdang Bato (2012), and Kid Molave (2014).
Meanwhile, newly appointed Philippine Racing Commission commissioner Atty. Dondon Bagatsing said that for a sport to get the support of both the public and the media, it must have integrity.
“Integrity is an essential in all sports, and it is no different in horse-racing, most especially in horse-racing,” said Bagatsing at the PSA Forum aired live over DZSR Sports Radio 918 and presented by San Miguel Corp., Accel, Shakey’s, and the Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corp.
“This way, the betting public will get their money’s worth,” added Bagatsing. – (The Philippine Star)