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The final field is set for the world’s richest horse race on turf, The Everest, so it is time to have a second look at the event having made a couple of punting suggestions in April when the betting market was in its infancy.
The good news for futures punters who followed one’s lead is that Chautauqua, which was available at good odds six months ago, is set to take his place in The Everest. Sadly, Takedown, which beat Chautauqua in last week’s Premiere Stakes, did not attract the attention of one of the 12 ticket holders so he will not participate in The Everest – bad news for punters who chanced backing him at huge odds.
She Will Reign is likely to exit the Randwick barrier gates as The Everest market leader following her victory in the AJ Moir Stakes at Moonee Valley last week. As a three-year-old filly, She Will Reign will carry a postage-stamp weight in The Everest but one thinks that she is a false favourite, not because she will be racing against seasoned gallopers but because her data is much better over 1,000 metres than 1,200m. With 10,000,000 Australian dollars up for grabs, there will be no place to hide in The Everest and it is regularly said that 1,200m at Randwick is akin to 1,400m elsewhere so She Will Reign is a lay at her current odds.
Other horses set to line up in The Everest about which one is less than enthusiastic are Redzel, English, Deploy, Clearly Innocent, Redkirk Warrior, Brave Smash, Fell Swoop and Tulip. Redzel has won four consecutive races to receive the credit that many horse racing pundits were reluctant to give him this time last year but, like She Will Reign, his 1,200m form is not as good as his numbers over slightly shorter trips. Each of English’s last two wins have taken place on wet tracks so she is ground dependent and, also, perhaps better suited to 1,100m than 1,200m. Deploy is a horse on the rise but he may not have the raw speed to take out a de facto Group One race over 1,200m and the same goes for Clearly Innocent.
David Hayes holds a massive opinion of Redkirk Warrior but, according to the clock, the former Hong Kong-based horse is a few lengths off some of his rivals in The Everest when lumping the right weight for his age. Brave Smash is another Asian import which will not be stopping over 1,200m but, like Redkirk Warrior, he may a few horses too quick for him over a sprint journey. Fell Swoop has not won a race since April 2016 and his first two runs back from a spell have been below the level likely to take out The Everest, while Tulip looks to be out of her depth.
That leaves Chautauqua, Vega Magic and Houtzen of the 12 horses set to take their chance in The Everest. The Hawkes team of Michael, Wayne and John have set Chautauqua for The Everest and a reproduction of his best 1,200m data would be sufficient for him to prevail unless one of his 11 rivals did something extraordinary. One expects The Everest to be run at a genuine tempo and that should enable Chautauqua to overtake all bar the gamest of his opponents in the Randwick straight – his sectional times in the second half of races are incredible. Vega Magic is unbeaten since joining David Hayes, Ben Hayes and Tom Dabernig from Sean Casey and one could argue that he is equally good over 1,200m and 1,400m, which is a big tick given Randwick’s configuration. Houtzen is one’s idea of the best outsider in The Everest primarily because she drops several kilograms in weight from her most recent success in which she posted a fast time over 1,200m.
With Chautauqua trading at odds of 11/2 6.50 +550 5.50 5.50 -0.18 with Bet365, Vega Magic listed at odds of 11/2 6.50 +550 5.50 5.50 -0.18 with Bet365 and Houtzen available at odds of 30/1 31.00 +3000 30.00 30.00 -0.03 with Betfair, punters wishing to dutch those three runners in The Everest can get combined odds of around 97/50 2.94 +194 1.94 1.94 -0.52 . The Everest will take place on Saturday 14 October at Randwick in the city of Sydney.
Dutch Chautauqua, Vega Magic and Houtzen to win the Everest
Saturday 14th October
Odds: 97/50 2.94 +194 1.94 1.94 -0.52
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