|Horse racing in Nuwara Eliya
Horse racing is a popular sport worldwide. In Sri Lanka horse racing is held only in Nuwara Eliya. The main season for racing is during April in Nuwara Eliya.
The festive season which begins on the 1st of April is organized by the Municipal Council to provide entertainment for the thousands of local and foreign holyday makers who flock to Nuwara Eliya during this season.
There are five days of horse racing during the season 6th, 10th, 14th, 17th and 20th April. The main day of racing is the 14th April which is the "Governers Cup Day". This race day draws extremely large crowds from all walks of life.
The main owners of the racing stables are Dr. M. S. Noohu, who owns over 60 thoroughbred horses, Mr. Nigel Austin, Suranjith Premadasa, Anurath Abeyratne, Gamini Jayaratne, Ajantha de Zoysa, Rajam Sallamuttu, Ari Wickramanayake, Gamini Kodituwakku, Devinda Senanayake, Dammika Attygalle, Nalin Rajapakse, Mrs. Charminstar Perera, Nihal Ratwatte, C. Brodie, S. Sridhar.
The main classes of horses are thoroughbred horses of 4 classes (most of these horses are imported from India). The other classes are locally bred thoroughbreds, three quarter bred, half-bred horses of three classes and local ponies. All these classes are very keenly contested.
Past winners of the coveted "Governors Cup" are 1998 "Boomarang" (Australian Thoroughbred) owner Nigel Austin, rider Madi Alagan 1999 Garabandel (Indian thoroughbred) rider R. Shinde, 2000 "Stormy Worrior" (Indian Thoroughbred) rider Bajarang Singh. 2001 Emperado (Indian Thoroughbred) rider V. Garath.
Many foreign and local riders take part in these races. This year the following riders will be riding in the races. They are V. Garath, Imran Khan, Dicky, Ravindrasingh (from India), R. Selvaratnam, R. Razick, R. Kumar, Ganesh, Ashok Kumar, Nandakumar, Lalith, Madhi Alaghan, Punitharaj, Dhayalan, R. Sivakumar and R. Balachandran.
Some of the favourite horses running this season are Stormy Worrior, Emperado, Nicodamus, Crownning Star Anticipator, Lakthara, Ancient Worrior Libo Queen, Aveglow, Pickpocket, Scralet Prince (Thoroughbred), Coconut Grove, Satin Streak, (Three quarter bred). Prince Coco, Crusader, Enjoy, Sensation, (Half bred), Macheko, Bright Destiny (Pony).
Some of the trainers of the above mentioned horses are Dr. M. S. Noohu, Nijal Austin, Mr. Kamal, Anurath Abeyratne, Gamini Kodithuwakku, Mrs. Charminstar Perera and C. Brodie.
We wish all the participants of the races (horses, owners, trainers and riders) a happy
safe and successful racing season.
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