The Everest worries are over: Crack line-up guarantees awesome display of speed

Tristan Rayner Editor

By Tristan Rayner, Tristan Rayner is a Roar Editor

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    She Will Reign passes the post for a win. (AAP Image/David Moir)

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    Finally, The Everest is here and we get an idea of just what the huge prizemoney can do for racing.

    The race will feature a crack, 12-horse field – one of the best sprinting line-ups in some time.

    There was a bit of an air of cynicism around the noise, something that wafts around racing for punters who’ve seen it all and heard it all before. Perhaps the only knock is on the lack of internationals showing here, but for a first time around, that can’t be a big one. Besides, sprinting is what Australia does.

    The likes of Godolphin and Aidan O’Brien aren’t able to send over their handicappers as genuine chances.

    Only the best are able to feature, although it would’ve been good to have seen how Europe’s best sprinters stack up here, rather than our best going over to challenge them in the path to Royal Ascot that the greats, including Black Caviar, followed.

    European sprinter Signs Of Blessing and the Irish sprinter that wasn’t to be in Caravaggio, among others, would’ve been great to see. But the clamour to have credibility in the race solely through one of these horses running doesn’t matter, now that we have a proper Group 1 field.

    We asked some questions of the race after the first announcement, and, ahem, were mostly on the money. The timing isn’t great for Hong Kong, Japanese, and European horses and that looked like it was always self-evident.

    We also suggested some top jockeys might stay in Melbourne. Damien Oliver will be racing at Caulfield on Saturday to maintain his Almandin connection rides in the big races to come, but otherwise, the big names are on the biggest stage.

    The race has been given a big push by all involved, from Racing NSW to the ATC to trainers and jockeys in the race connections. The race was always set out to feel like a clash of the elites, and while that’s mostly the case, it doesn’t feel out of reach – the best sprinters have found their way to the race.

    Six runners are last-start winners, and perhaps the quality can be summed up briefly by looking at the four emergencies, featuring two Group 1 winners, and two Group 1 place getters.

    My take on the form isn’t worth that much – it’s taken too many surprises in bigger races for me to realise that our sprinters are very close to each other and it doesn’t take much to go wrong to see an upset.

    That said…

    Chautauqua has been revving up since his sensational win over the track and distance in the TJ Smith. He’ll probably get his chance to do exactly the same thing again, but this time he’ll fly home against much stiffer opposition. He’s one of the stars of the show though – the flashy grey that dawdles at the back will have plenty of eyes on him. He drew gate five, exactly what the Hawkes training team were hoping for.

    ChautauquaShe Will Reign is my tip. The Golden Slipper winner’s return in the Moir Stakes was sensational and while this is another step again, the weight scale and performance at Moonee Valley was enough for me to consider her a super chance. The draw in gate two suited well enough.

    Vega Magic has shown impressive form in Melbourne as well. Putting together four wins on the trot, including two Group 1s and the Memsie Stakes last start. Goes well fresh so the seven-week break since then should suit. Question marks on going the Sydney way, with no experience on this track either.

    Redzel is likely to be in the finish with the perfect Sydney preparation but is a risk late, for mine.

    Redkirk Warrior has had a lovely draw in barrier three, and it’s not hard to imagine him sticking his head out late. His Randwick form is ordinary but those runs did come on a heavy track. Only 10-12mm of rain are forecast for what has been a dry run for Sydney. Young Regan Bayliss remains in the saddle, and might find himself earning as much as he did last year in just over a minute’s work.

    Brave Smash adds a some intrigue to the race. The knockers came for him after his second to Bons Away last start, but with blinkers going on he might find a new peak. He’s a good price if you believe in him!

    English is super consistent for Gai Waterhouse and Adrian Bott but drew widest, while Clearly Innocent showed more than his formline. Trainer Kris Lees said off his last-start third that he needs time to wind-up, and he let down well enough when he finally found room last start to give backers belief he’ll be thereabouts if he finds the space he needs. With Hugh Bowman on board, that could well happen.

    I can’t wait to see the fastest minute or so in sport – and how the race is adopted by both Sydneysiders, and Australia as a whole.

    Tristan Rayner
    Tristan Rayner

    Tristan is a writer, consultant, racing enthusiast and former Editor of The Roar who has turned the Melbourne Cup into a year-round study via

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    The Crowd Says (9)

    • October 11th 2017 @ 9:44am
      Razzar said | October 11th 2017 @ 9:44am | ! Report

      Good timing Tristan, just did my form on race. May be halving bets though, very competitive, these sprints.
      Plus my comments may raise a few eyebrows.

      Good speed obviously.

      Chautauqua: getting well out of his ground, that leaves him with a lot to do. $11 rating

      Vega Magic is an absolute bulldog, up for fight here $7 rating..

      Redzel is going well, last bit in pressure race a concern. $8 rating

      Redkirk Warrior purely on mapping looks to get pot run. This horse finds when required. Top chance $5.50 rating

      Deploy could run them off their legs here, but good horses are hard to hold off. $5.50 rating

      English is back to her best, will settle back and getting past quality rump here won’t be easy. $9 rating

      She will Reign. This is no easy task for a young 3yo filly. Wouldn’t want the party up front to Get to rough for her. $8 rating

      Great days racing , good luck punters.

    • October 11th 2017 @ 12:53pm
      no one in particular said | October 11th 2017 @ 12:53pm | ! Report

      I haven’t really gotten into the Everest, but there has been talk overseas about it. I have a bookmaker contact in Vegas who, for the last few months, only wants to talk about Winx and the Everest. Apparently the US racing community have their eye on it

    • October 11th 2017 @ 1:24pm
      Haradasun said | October 11th 2017 @ 1:24pm | ! Report

      I’ll take $11 on the Chat thanks! I usually like reading your ratings, but you have been smoking the good stuff to come up with that. They only care about this race for him and he has been working well with cracking late sectionals. He got kicked in the head last start but for mine he is the proven performer and has been going as well as ever. Bit of rain floating around is perfect for him.

      Redkirk hasn’t produced around the bend.

      Vega is a top one and will be thereabouts.

      SWR is a superstar, but gee whiz not sure a 3yo filly can produce in a high pressure race like this.

      Deploy going pretty well! Broke the track record on the lightning fast Randwick tracks of late. But i think there could be some serious pressure up front in this. $5.50 chance a bit short though!

    • October 11th 2017 @ 1:30pm
      Haradasun said | October 11th 2017 @ 1:30pm | ! Report

      Clearly innocent ran a great first up run. Just think he may have to improve a couple of lengths again (which he may well be capable of doing) from his previous best to win here.

    • Roar Guru

      October 11th 2017 @ 6:12pm
      kv joef said | October 11th 2017 @ 6:12pm | ! Report

      solid analysis Tristan. yesterday when the field came out put them through the first wringer – no pace profiles etc just match-ups / spd / optimum running position with still a lot to do before settling on something … just a sneak preview for an excited old kid. the first look surprised me but it was really close to your race profile.

      The auto gave the 3yrolds a couple of negs from somewhere but i reckon that is only race pressure queries. these babies haven’t copped anything like this but as Tristan points out SWReign keeps stepping up and on straight numbers she is right there.

      Anyway, the interesting thing from my first look was how close Chau and a slightly weakening Redzeal come to together at the post. Really, really close.

      Having a quiet think, a lot of tactical race pressure lies with Jeff Lloyd. Do Lloyd and Brown force Redzeal forward with
      Vega Magic coming across or does Lloyd zip out for 300m to try and con a cheap 400m after that … ‘time’ will tell … it really is a great race.

      Thought the consolation was a really good race too.

    • October 11th 2017 @ 6:53pm
      Mike from tari said | October 11th 2017 @ 6:53pm | ! Report

      Is Houtsen in the race?????! I see someone mentioned Lloyd but not the horse he rides,

      • October 11th 2017 @ 7:07pm
        Scuba said | October 11th 2017 @ 7:07pm | ! Report

        Yes she is.

        • October 12th 2017 @ 2:25pm
          Mike from tari said | October 12th 2017 @ 2:25pm | ! Report

          I was being facetious.

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