Mumbai

Glamour, excitement to come together at Mahalaxmi Racecourse on Feb. 23

Full gallop: Jockeys ride their horses as they compete in the fifth edition of Kingfisher Ultra Indian Derby 2020 at Mahalaxmi Racecourse in Mumbai on February 2.

Full gallop: Jockeys ride their horses as they compete in the fifth edition of Kingfisher Ultra Indian Derby 2020 at Mahalaxmi Racecourse in Mumbai on February 2.  

Ground to play host to the Poonawalla Breeders’ Multi-Million racing carnival

The Mahalaxmi Racecourse will host yet another crowd puller after the Indian Derby — the Poonawalla Breeders’ Multi-Million (Gr. 1) (PBMM) — on February 23. The mega event will be staged as part of the Evening Racing Carnival, which is likely to start at 4 p.m. and end at 8.30 p.m. The PBMM will be conducted at 6 p.m. under the floodlights.

“In its 31st year, PBMM has come a long way since its debut in 1990,” Zavaray Poonawalla, chairman, RWITC, told presspersons.

The total stakes for the event would be roughly ₹1.5 crore, and the winner will take home a “handsome purse” along with a trophy, he said. This year, there will be a 'Clash Of Titans' between Indian and foreign jockeys. There will be also a point-based contest for trainers called, the 'Leading Trainer of the Day'.

Zinia Lawyer, marketing head of RWITC, said there will also be the regular ‘free contest of skill’, where racegoers will have to nominate the first four placings of the PBMM. The first prize is a Honda Amaze car while the three other prizes are a scooter, an LED television set and a laptop. Models in ‘top-of-the-line’ outfits and hats provided by Delna Poonawalla will add to the carnival atmosphere, she said.

Besides, the Poonawalla family, which conducts the event, will be giving a ₹50 betting voucher to everyone in the first (public) enclosure, where entry will be free, said N.H.S.Mani, secretary and CEO of RWITC. There will also be free entry for members in the members enclosure, who will receive a free ₹100 voucher. Non-members entering the members enclosure will need to pay ₹100 as entry fee, besides ₹350 for using the phone. They will also receive a free betting voucher of ₹100. There will be also be a 50% discount on popular food items in the first enclosure, he said.

What is PBMM?

The concept of ‘The Breeders Million Race’ evolved in the late 1980s when members of the National Horse Breeding Society of India got together to find ways to boost breeding and horse racing as a sport, which, in India, was lacking in patronage as compared to racing centres around the world.

The NHBSI decided to institute a race on the lines of the Magic Million and the Cartier Million in Australia and Ireland respectively.

The Poonawalla brothers, Cyrus and Zavaray, came forward to conduct this event and agreed to generate ₹1 million for it. The first sponsored Poonawalla Breeders’ Million race ran on March 11, 1990. Also known as the ‘Juvenile Derby’, the race is for three-year-old horses who run over 1,400 metres. It determines the juvenile champion in the country.

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Printable version | Feb 22, 2020 6:39:13 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/mumbai/glamour-excitement-to-come-together-at-mahalaxmi-racecourse-on-feb-23/article30787456.ece

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