By a nose; by a mile

December 28, 2018
O'Neal Cortez
O'Neal Cortez

An amazing rider now on its third year in the trade is locked in a close duel with a veteran he holds in high esteem in the jockeys division. An affable businessman whose stable wins races as regularly as brushing your teeth is on the cusp of a sixth straight championship as top earner among owners. A venerable trainer emerging No. 1 for the nth time.

These are the highlights of the 2018 local horseracing season that’s drawing to a close.

A Philracom report obtained by the People’s Journal shows  O’Neal Cortez and old-timer Jonathan Hernandez figuring in a close race for the top jockey plum and Narciso O. Morales looking unstoppable in his march towards a sixth consecutive crown as winningest horseowner.

Like Morales, Tupas will most likely end up as tops in the trainers’ division which he has ruled with an iron hand in an incredible achievement which pundits said will be hard to duplicate.

“Both (Morales and Tupas) will win their respective divisions again this year. And that’s no surprise. It’s another incredible year for both of them,” said Daniel Aguila, an avid racing from Fairview told PJ.

As of end of November, Cortez has garnered a total prize of P29, 298, 165  on 123 wins,  108 second, 102 third and 93 fourth place finishes while  running a fighting second is Hernandez who has P29,021,966 (134-93-81-79).

The race among owners is ending the way it is highly expected by almost everybody—another triumphant year for Morales.

Eleven months into the season, Morales has amassed a total prize money of P59, 522,226 as its stable won an eye-popping total of 274 races while emerging runnerup in 315 others. It wound up third in 297 races and fourth in 308.

There’s no way for SC Stockfarm Inc (P15,699,761) and Sonny Javier (P12,055, 596) could topple Morales, whose winning streak started in 2013 in a run that is expected to go down in local racing as one of the greatest ever.

The race among trainers is headed to another romp for Tupas.

The old man has accumulated a total prize money of P42,232,591 on 173 wins, 148 second, 126 third and 111 fourth place finishes, way, way ahead of Danny Sordan who has P22,336,380 (102-111-89-78) and RC Hipolito who has P20,993,835 (87-79-64-71).

Among the horses, it’s Smart Candy who’s showing the way as she garnered P4,791,089 in prizes built around six wins while Victorious Colt is not far behind in second place with P3,619,158, most coming in his two stakes victories.

Third is Pride of Laguna with P3,555,570.