A change of racing strategy did wonders for Melaine Habla’s War Cannon (Brigand out of Ivanavinalot) by outstriding history chasing Nuclear Bomb in the 3rd Leg of local horseracing’s Triple Crown series sponsored by the Philippine Racing Commission at the Santa Ana Park in Naic, Cavite last Sunday.

After trying his hand at setting the pace unsuccessfully during the first two legs of the series, jockey Kelvin “The Genius Rider” opted to position his mount mid pack during the early stages of the 2000-meter journey waiting for the opportune moment to make the move as stablemate Flattering You dictated the tempo. And that moment came with half-a-mile to go, same with known stayer Nuclear Bomb.

At the turn for home, it was fourth choice Gusto Mucho in the lead with both Nuclear Bomb and War Cannon leveling up. In the straight, the race was transformed into a two-horse race with Nuclear Bomb briefly grabbing the lead. But War Cannon was not to be denied the win as the new strategy left him enough gas in the tank to blast away and take the victory by about four lengths ahead.

When asked about the change in strategy, Abobo said “Actually lahat ng leg gusto namin remate sya kaso may ugali sya kaya kinorect lang namin sya hanggang sa natuto nung 3rd leg.”

The triumph gave Habla, Abobo and multi-awarded trainer Ruben Tupaz the lion’s share of the P3.5-million purse at P2.1-million, not to mention the exquisite trophy designed and created by renowned artist Ramon Orlina.

War Cannon registered a time of 2:07 (23′-23′-26-26′-27′).

Rounding out the top five finishers were Kevlar, Gusto Mucho, King Tiger and Flattering You.

In the 2021 Philracom Hopeful Stakes businessman/sportsman Leonardo “Sandy” Javier’s Shanghai Silk (Shanghai Bobby ou of Discreet Empire)pulled the rug from under her more favored opponents and winning P900-thousand for Javier, trainer Ruben Tupaz and jockey Andrew Villegas.

In the early goings, it was fast-stepping Chrome Platter which dictated the pace with the eventual winner nicely settled in fifth. But as the pack hit the 3/4-mile pole, it was La Vie D’Or taking the lead with Shanghai Silk in tow.

At the straightway, Shanghai Silk took the front and never looked back and won the 2000-meter race by 5 lengths with a clocking of 2:06.6 (24-24′-26-25-27).

La Vie D’Or, O Sole Mio, Tocque Bell rounded out the top four finishers.

Isla Puting Bato went from last to first in capturing the Philracom 3YO Locally Bred Stakes for Mary Ann Tansengco, trainer Peter Aguila and jockey John Paul Guce which was also ran over the 2000-meter distance.

The Eagle Scout out of Sungold Sally progeny clocked 2:07.8(25-24′-25′-25-27) in taking the top plum of P600-thousand for her connections.

Coming in second was top pick Hook On D Run with Arrabiata, Kiss Muna and Stayinthemoment completing the top five finishers.