Sun | Feb 23, 2020

Mahfood vows to back 100th running of Boom Derby

Published:Wednesday | June 13, 2018 | 12:00 AMLivingston Scott/Gleaner Writer
William Mahfood

Chairman of Wisynco, William Mahfood, says his company intends to take its sponsorship of the Jamaica Derby into the 100th running of the event in the next two years.

Wisynco is in the second year of a three-year partnership with promoters Supreme Ventures Racing and Entertainment (SVREL) as sponsors of the Boom Jamaica Derby. However, Wisynco's sponsorship comes to an end next year, at the 99th running, and Mahfood promised his company cannot afford to let the milestone 100th running of the region's most prestigious horse racing event to slip them by. As a result, he pledged to extend their sponsorship into the 100th year of the derby.

"I can promise you, I cannot allow the 100th running of this race to go on without Wisynco. I will not allow that to happen. We will have to sit with Supreme Ventures and come up with an agreement beyond next year," he commented




Mahfood, who was speaking at the launch of the 2018 Boom Jamaica Derby at Caymanas Park yesterday, also described the highly anticipated race as the "premier" event in the English-speaking Caribbean and insists that more must be done to pull a bigger crowd and to highlight the prestigious annual event, set for June 30 at Caymanas Park.

And though he believes patrons are still getting used to associating the Wisynco brand with the derby, Mahfood believes in time the brand will be synonymous with Jamaica's premier horse racing event.

"This is our premier event in the English-speaking Caribbean but one thing we have to overcome is getting people to associate the derby with our brand. But with a couple more years under our belt people will start looking at this as the Boom (Jamaica) Derby," he told the gathering.

The Boom Jamaica Derby is a grade one event for native bred three year olds and will be contested over 2400 metres.

The top contenders are 1000 Guineas winner DISABILITY CHARM, 2000 Guineas winner COMMANDER TWO and Jamaica Oaks heroine FAYROUZ. Others leading lights are DRUMMER BOY, ROYAL AVIATOR, MARQUESAS, EL PROFESOR and HONEY RYDA.

The card will feature 11 races, with the co-features being the SVRL Juvenile Stakes for two year olds, the SVRL Sprint Trophy for native bred three year olds and imported non winners of two and the Viceroy Trophy for grade one horses over 1800m which has attracted last year's Triple Crown winner SHE'S A MANEATER and top rated BIGDADDYKOOL.

This year's derby purse is $8 million with the sponsors contributing $3m. The winning owners are set to collect $4.3 million.