The 31st successive running of the richest juvenile race in the country, the Poonawalla Breeders’ Multi-Million (Gr.1), (PBMM) is scheduled for 6 p.m. on Sunday (Feb. 23). The Intervalve Poonawalla Ltd. Million, for maiden three-year-olds over 1,200m, shall be run at 4 p.m. on the same day.
The total stakesmoney for the plum event is ₹1,45,42,875 with the winner’s purse being ₹87,25,725.
Among the 11 contestants in the PBMM, the top contender is the Bengaluru-based trainer Suleiman Attaollahi’s filly Forest Flame. She won the Breeders’ Produce Stakes during the Indian Derby weekend at Mumbai almost by a distance and given her track performances, she may repeat.
The two challengers from Mumbai, Giant Star and California who may pose a threat, hail from trainer Malesh Narredu’s yard. Malesh’s son Deepesh Narredu will be saddling both the horses as the former is facing one month suspension.
Giant Star’s winning debut on the Derby weekend over 1600m trip was very impressive. With excellent morning trials, he may have a say at the finish. Stablemate California, winner of the Gool S. Poonawalla million, is in fine nick.
S. Padmanabhan-trained Golden Oaks, winner of the B.K. Rattonsey Maiden Million, may add pep, while Hyderabad-based trainer L.V.R. Deshmukh’s ward Lombardy, winner of two races, may be a dangerous threat.
For the racegoers at the Mahalaxmi race course, there will be a “free contest of skill’ where they will have to nominate the first four placings of the PBMM. The first prize is a Honda Amaze car and the other three prizes are a scooter, LED TV and a laptop.
To promote the sport, the Poonawalla Family has decided to give away a ₹50 betting voucher, a free contest of skill form and free entry to the first 7,500 racegoers in the first enclosure on Sunday.
There will be a bonanza for the tote-betting punters, as a gross amount of ₹20,14,350 will be added to the combined jackpot pool. A gross amount of ₹10 lakh will be added to the collection of the super jackpot pool.
There will be a championship battle between Indian and foreign jockeys and a glittering prize distribution parade will be held.
The Indian team has A. Sandesh, P. Trevor and P.S. Chouhan, while the foreign combine is made up of David Allan, David Egan and Nicky Mackay.
Upto five races, in which at least two jockeys from each team are declared, will be considered for the Clash Of Titans and same shall be decided after the declarations. For calculating points, equal number of riders will be selected from each team.
In addition, there will also be a trainers’ championship with points given in all races except the last race of the day.
The top three placings will get 15, 10 and 7 points respectively, while the next three will fetch 5, 3 and 1 points.