HYDERABAD: A Rs. 1.1 crore hike has taken the Hyderabad monsoon stake to an all time high of Rs. 6,84,52,500 in addition to trophies worth Rs. 18,45,000. This registers a 20.5 per cent increase over last monsoon’s prizes, according to the prospectus released by the Hyderabad Race Club. The surge may be attributed to the division of races.

The 30-day season gets underway on July 10 and will conclude on October 20. The prime attraction slated for October 2 will be the Golconda Textiles Deccan Derby that in addition to the sweepstakes, will have Rs. 30 lakhs, in which M/s. Golconda Textiles Private Limited and the Hyderabad Race Club (HRC) will contribute Rs. 1.5 million each to make up the over Rs. 3 million prize. The sponsor will also award the trophy valued at Rs. 50,000.

The stake for the President of India Gold Cup has been raised to Rs. 20 lakhs. There is also a rise in prize money for sweepstakes and Category I races, the latter numbering four. The penalties for sweepstakes and Category I terms races have been revised based on the previous results.

Modifications

There are minor modifications to the ratings of handicap races which are as follows: Category II upto 75 and Category III upto 50 and upto 25. From this season, the bottom weight of jockeys in the races will be 49 kgs as against 47 earlier.

Going by the enhanced comfort levels of two-storied stables and with a view to accommodate more horses, the club has begun construction of similar stables with better facilities. A cause for worry however is the delayed onset of the monsoon, so essential to keep the underfoot conditions race-worthy.

The racing fraternity will miss trainer Rafaat Hussain, who intends quitting the field to pursue his interests elsewhere. In the fray will be 19 trainers and 40 jockeys apart from visiting riders. Besides outstation horses for classics and sweepstakes races, 469 local animals will vie for honours, including a sizeable number of three-year-olds, that will pep up the proceedings. Apart from this, 209 two-year-olds are under training and set to start their careers from November.

Racing dates:

July 10, 11, 17, 18, 24, 25, August 3, 4, 10, 11, 15, 17 (A.P. Governor’s Cup), 24 (Nizam’s Gold Cup), 25, 31 (Deccan Bookmakers Fillies Trial Stakes), September 1, 7 (Deccan Bookmakers Colts Trial Stakes), 8, 14 (President of India Gold Cup), 15, 21 (A.P. Chief Minister’s Cup), 22, 28, October 1 (Melbourne Racing Club Trophy), 2 (Golconda Textiles Deccan Derby), 5, 11, 13, 19 (Golconda St. Leger) and 20.

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