WIND BLOWN: Running with the Wind

Taken from Page 296 of “The Front Runner” MJCI Coffee Table Book

WIND BLOWN: Running with the Wind

Wind Blown (foaled 1977, by Hazm out of Wind In My Hair) is one of the sport’s most popular horses of all time.

Classed as an elite runner from the get-go, he triumphed in the third leg of the Philippine Racing Commission Triple Crown Series in 2000, ridden by Dominador H. Borbe Jr. Wind Blown also won the PCSO Presidential Gold Cup back-to-back in 2000 with Borbe, and in 2001 with Patricio R. Dilema, and the PCSO First Lady Silver Cup back-to-back in 2001 and 2002, both times ridden by Fernando M. Raquel, Jr.

After his racing career, he was retired to stud and sired well-regarded progeny, including Don Enrico (out of Kayumanggi), which won the second leg of the Triple Crown in 2008.
Wind Blown was bred by businessman and now Javier, Leyte Mayor Leonardo “Sandy” M. Javier, Jr. on his Royal Maverick Ranch in Batangas. He was unattractive when young; in fact, said the late jockey Elpidio S. Aguila in 2003 of the big, gangly colt, “Mukhang butete siya” (He looked like a tadpole).

When Wind Blown won the PCSO Presidential Gold Cup in 2000, he was still owned by Javier. But after Wind Blown dismally lost to Phenomenal in a race that he ran as the favorite, Javier sold him to prominent horse owner and businessman Herminio S. Esguerra.

Esguerra’s team developed the tremendous potential of the horse that became the biggest money earner of his time, amassing almost P20 million during his career for 24 stakes-race wins. Wind Blown won the 2001 Gold Cup under Esguerra’s ownership.

Although not undefeated, Wind Blown was considered a kampeon ng pista (champion of the track), and reigned in the hearts of racing fans. He grew to be big and bulky, and preferred to run in front. Because of his accomplishments, he was handicapped with heavy weights, at one point running with 60 kg – the most any horse has had to carry in the modern era of Philippine racing.

All his riders – Aguila, Borbe, Raquel, Dilema, and Jeffril T. Zarate – agree that Wind Blown’s greatest fault as a runner was his tendency to lean in. “Ang lakas sumandal,” (He leaned a lot), says Raquel. “Sakit na niya talaga iyon. Nanlalamig pa.” (That was really his problem. And he’d lose steam too,)

But all agree that his greatest asset were his soundness, strength, and heart. Raquel adds, “Iba ang galling niya, iba ang puso kung lumaban. Bilib ako sa kanya – champion talaga” (He had a different kind of talent, a different kind of heart when fighting. I’m really impressed by him – he was a true champion.)

When Wind Blown was retired, Esguerra held a memorable farewell ceremony for him in 2004 at Santa Ana Park in Makati City. It was a balmy evening, and the horse ran around the track in a farewell lap as the song “Wind Blown” composed and recorded by Rannie Raymundo, sounded over the in-track speakers: “Sumasabay sa Hangin, Wind Blown talaga.”

Add a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *