CONTROVERSIAL race The Everest has already attracted both positive and negative reviews, but what does the betting market look like?
Bookmakers can only speculate as to which owners would want to spend $600,000 for a sprint race at Randwick, but the market paints an interesting picture.
Champion mare Winx is the joint-favourite at $7 with Sportsbet.com.au, despite The Everest being held only two weeks out from the Cox Plate.
The $10 million purse will certainly be tempting for the connections of Winx, but it would ultimately result in Winx having to bypass a third consecutive Cox Plate attempt.
Racing NSW have made an error in making The Everest a 1200m sprint, as it will rule out many top international runners, so we don’t think there’s any chance of Winx taking part in this new initiative.
On the same line at $7 is the Hawkes-trained Chautauqua, which could very well be set for the race. It loves the sprinting distances and it has some high-profile owners supporting it.
The Everest betting market
Full market available at Sportsbet.com.au
Chautauqua – $7
Winx – $7
Astern – $8
Flying Artie – $11
Extreme Choice – $15
Star Turn – $15
Spieth – $17
Acapulco (USA) – $21
Limato (IRE) – $26
Mecca’s Angel (IRE) – $26
Malaguerra – $26
Russian Revolution – $26
Music Magnate – $26
Lady Aurelia (USA) – $26
Houtzen – $34
English – $34
Takedown – $51
Lucky Bubbles (HK) – $51
Black Heart Bart – $51
Lucky Hussler – $51
Aerovelocity (HK) – $51
Hellbent – $51
Astern has the powerful Godolphin stables behind it and the royal blue outfit will have no problem fronting up with the cash.
The three-year-old colt is a winner of five from eight starts, which includes the Group 1 Golden Rose and the Group 2 Silver Slipper. It looks a strong chance in lining up in The Everest and punters are getting a much better price now than they will on race day.
Extreme Choice is another talented three-year-old which has the backing behind it. Among its owners include Newgate Farm, Aquis Farm and the China Horse Club – so paying the $600,000 entry fee shouldn’t be a deterrent.
The son of Not A Single Doubt has already won over $1.6 million in prizemoney with wins in the Moir Stakes and the Blue Diamond Stakes, and it could offer some value at +1400 with Sportsbet.com.au.
Flying Artie owner dreams of big pay day
Wilf Mula owns only 10 per cent of champion three-year-old Flying Artie, but he’s given The Everest the green light to his fellow owners.
Mula is prepared to take the gamble and he has contacted Newgate Farm which holds the majority share.
“It is a different concept, it is a great concept,” Mula said. “I only have 10 per cent of Flying Artie now but I rang Henry Field (from Newgate Farm) straight away and told him I was in if he wants to pay up.
“If you have a great sprinter why wouldn’t you want to prove you’re the best in the richest race in the world?”
The $50,000 sales purchase was sold by its connections to Newgate Farm after it won the Coolmore Stud Stakes and Mula said its possible success over the next few months could pay its way into the race.
“Someone like me is in a very fortunate position that I have a horse that is the right horse at the right time,” Mula said. “I can only talk for myself.
“I’m excited about the next couple of months with the Newmarket and other races, but The Everest gave us something more to think about.
“Flying Artie is definitely racing on as a four-year-old and will probably stay in Australia now and we would look at Royal Ascot next year – $10 million has to change your thinking.”
Flying Artie is currently $11 with Sportsbet.com.au, which is better than the $7 at CrownBet.com.au.
Dale considering The Everest with Fell Swoop
Matthew Dale is waiting for more details to come out about The Everest before fully committing to it, but the Canberra-based trainer has the right horse for the job.
Fell Swoop returns to the track on Friday for a trial before targetting a race in Melbourne, and the taste of a $10 million payday has Dale feeling excited.
“It’s exciting to have (Fell Swoop) back towards the races, he’s our headline act and runs at the top level all the time,” Dale said.
“It (The Everest) just dropped from the sky yesterday and there are still a lot of questions that need to be answered in regards to the process.
“The initial thoughts are that it’s exciting because I’ve got a weight-for-age horse that’s a 1200m sprinter that’s competitive every time we put him around.”
Dale does have his concerns about the payment scheme, but will wait for more details to be released before making a judgement.
“That’s exciting. But there are big questions marks over the way the entry fee works and that will be explained over the next week or so,” Dale said.
“It’s very intricate… you start talking about those type of dollars, it’s exciting. I don’t have too much information about the concept though so we’re still working it out.”