Horse number six Peggson ridden by local jockey Brendan McNaugthon and trained by Bridget Stildolph beat a strong field of 14 horses to win the biggest and richest horse racing event in the country, the Castle Tankard at Borrowdale race course on Saturday the 11th of May (today).
The Castle Tankard is a grade 1 race with a total prize money of RTGS$100 000.
The field of 16 horses was reduced to 14 after horse number 10 Penny from Heaven was scratched and number 16 Wolves among Sheep could not race after dropping jockey Liam Tarantaal before the start.
The Castle Tankard is the oldest and richest horse race, the most consistent and biggest race event on the Zimbabwean calendar.
Strong challenge for pole position came from horse number 15 Leven Point who beat other seasoned campaigners including Simona and Knuckleball.
McNaughton relished his podium finish after missing the chance in last year’s race and said it was a dream come true.
“I am thrilled to have won the biggest race,” he said.
A consortium of 9 owns the winning horse led by Gary Shutt paid tribute to the sponsors and partner Mashonaland Turf Club for ensuring the sport continues to thrive despite the challenging economic environment.
“Would like to pay tribute to my partners, sponsors and MTC for the wonderful contribution to keep this industry thriving,” Shutt said.
Sponsors of the horse race, Delta Beverages board chairman Canaan Dube pledged to continue supporting the event which is now in its 58th year.
“Delta Corporation continues to play its role in the country and various communities it operates in. In 2019 Delta contributed to the fiscus by way of excise duty, vat and company tax to over $220 million. The company has been recognised every year by ZIMRA for its contribution to the fiscus and exemplary tax payer,” he said.
Guest of honour, Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Information, Publicity and Broadcasting Services Nick Mangwana said government supports the business community and will continue to implement policies that ensure business thrives.
“As government we are committed to provide a conducive environment for business to thrive,” he said.
This year’s Castle Tankard drew huge crowds, not for the horse race, but also for the entertainment which included music galore, jumping castles for the kids as well as the drinks that flowed throughout the day and well into the evening.