Manila Jockey Club, Inc., the premier horse racing club in the country and one of Asia’s oldest, hosts the 46th PCSO Presidential Gold Cup on Sunday at the world-class racing grounds of San Lazaro Leisure Park in Carmona, Cavite.
Out of the 45 editions, 27 races have been hosted by MJC.
Locally-bred runners will compete for the P5,000,000 distributed purse from the 1st to 4th placers, including a cash incentive to the winning breeder.
Declared runners include Manalig Ka/CS Pare Jr. by Aurelio P. De Leon; Electric Truth/MA Alvarez by Leonardo M. Javier Jr.; Highway One/VR Dilema by Cool Summer Farm; Dixie Gold/OP Cortez by Joseph C. Dyhengco; Radioactive/KB Abobo and Sepfourteen/JA Guce by SC Stockfarm Inc.; Salt and Pepper/JB Hernandez by Herminio S. Esguerra; and Pangalusian Island/JPa Guce by Wilbert T. Tan.
Additional stakes races which will be conducted in accordance with Philracom’s Rating-Based Handicapping System include Fundador Cup Division I, Fundador Cup Division II, EEG Development Corporation Cup, and Mayor Ramon Preza Cup.
All races will have a guaranteed prize of P250,000, distributed from the 1st to 4th placers, plus trophies to the winning owner, trainer and jockey.
The Presidential Gold Cup was conceived through the efforts of the late PCSO Chairman and General Manager Nereo C. Andolong. The first edition was held on. Oct. 7, 1973 at the famed San Lazaro Hippodrome in Santa Cruz, Manila. A jampacked crowd witnessed the race which was participated by favorites Sun God and Ilocos King, among others. The former, owned by Don Pedro Cojuangco, eventually won the race with the expert riding skills of Jockey Elias Ordiales.
The following year, however, was dominated by Constante Rubio’s Ilocos King, which was ridden by Jockey Crescencio. The duo was able to set the fastest winning time of 2:17, breaking the previous record of Sun God resulting to endless cheers from the crowd.
From 1975 to 1978, San Lazaro Hippodrome continued to host the popular race with Henna’s Gold, Fiorella, Little Morning and Gypsy Grey becoming Gold Cup champions, respectively.
From 1979 to 2012, MJC and the Philippine Racing Club, Inc. would take turns hosting the Gold Cup race.
The legendary Fair and Square was the first horse to score a back-to-back win, claiming his second title on Dec. 12, 1982 at San Lazaro Hippodrome. The colt was owned by Cesar and Herminia Mamon and was ridden by Jockey Jesus Guce.
This prestigious feat was then followed by horses Sun Dancer, Bulldozer and Wind Blown. At present, the celebrated Hagdang Bato, by owner Benhur Abalos was the latest horse to proudly hold two Gold Cup titles, one in 2012 and 2014.