Undefeated Hitting Spree, winner over Atomicseventynine in the 2017 Amb.

Unbeaten imports clash in Cojuangco stakes race
(The Philippine Star) - February 18, 2018 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines — The paths of three unconquered imports finally cross in the 2018 Henry Cojuangco Golden Mile Stakes Race, a featured clash of seasoned “open group” campaigners at the San Lazaro Leisure Park in Carmona, Cavite.

The P1.5-million marquee event is being held in honor of the late horseman and outstanding public servant Enrique “Henry” Cojuangco, with the support of the Philippine Racing Commission, Manila Jockey Club, Inc. and the eponymous Hapi Group of local horse owners and breeders.

Set over a mile distance, the open group faceoff features currently undefeated Hitting Spree (USA), Tin Drum (USA) and Mystic Award (AUS) in a battle-royale for all the marbles and bragging rights for three highly competitive racing stables.

Expected to get top billing is current reigning champion import Hitting Spree, unblemished in nine consecutive starts since her debut last year, including victories in the P6M MJCI 1867 Founders’ Cup Stakes Race and the 2017 Amb. Eduardo Cojuangco, Jr. Cup.

The five-year-old dark bay race mare by Grand Slam out of Zarrin by Maria’s Mon, races under racing juggernaut SC Stockfarm Inc. and will be skippered by journeyman jockey Kelvin Abobo.

Likely to make a serious bid to dislodge Hitting Spree is similarly unbeaten US-bred 4-year-old colt Tin Drum, who is currently on a six-race winning streak since his local track debut last October. Already competing at the top levels since December, the chestnut galloper is by Kentucky Derby winner Super Saver out of Danzig Point by Point Given. His dam is a half-sister to champion US sire Distorted Humor and he races under Cool Summer Farms with jockey Rodeo Fernandez on the saddle.

The third unconquered entry is four-year-old Aussie-bred filly Mystic Award, a recent winner of the Japan Cup (Imported) who has not tasted defeat in seven outings since her first local start last November.

Racing under the colors of Jade Bros Farms & Livestock Inc. and set to be ridden by former apprentice standout JD Juco, Mystic Award is by Congrats out of Dreams and Desires by Encosta de Lago.

Bred and raised by Amb. Danding Cojuangco’s Gooree Farm in Australia, Mystic Award comes from the same family that produced stakes winner and sire Yes Boss and her sire and dam are both line bred to the great foundation mare La Troienne.

In addition to the three headliners, also in the hunt for the premier spot is multiple stakes winning import Atomicseventynine (USA), who is likely to be in early contention for the lead, together with Daiquiri Lass (USA), as well as, seasoned island-born campaigners Messi and Temecula.

Focus of attention will likely be on the tactical battle between Hitting Spree and Tin Drum, with the former enjoying a big edge in terms of experience competing at the top levels over much longer distances.

“The featured Henry Cojuangco Golden Mile Stakes is our humble tribute to a man who has devoted a great part of his life towards the uplift of the local thoroughbred industry, a gentleman-horseman who has inspired many among us to contribute our share towards the development of local breeding and racing despite the challenges,” said Hapi Group stalwart Aristeo “Putch” Puyat.

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