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This Saturday in Sydney history will be made with the inaugural running of The Everest 2017 race at Randwick Racecourse, but what is this $10 million event everyone on the racing scene is talking about?
The Everest is now the richest turf race in the world, with an incredible $10 million in total prize money on offer.
That surpasses Australia’s previous richest race, the iconic Group 1 $6.2 million Emirates Melbourne Cup (3200m) contested over the two miles at Flemington on the first Tuesday of November each spring.
Up until 2017, the bulk of interest spring racing wise has been focused on Victoria with the ‘Big 3’ spring majors: the Group 1 $3 million Caulfield Cup (2400m) on October 21, the Group 1 $3 million Ladbrokes Cox Plate (2040m) on October 28 won by Winx the past two years and of course the Melbourne Cup on November 7.
The Australian Turf Club (ATC) wasn’t standing for it any longer and despite their denials, The Everest has come under the spotlight for looking to steal the spring racing show away from down south.
The Everest 2017 Race Facts
- When: Saturday October 14, 2017
- Where: Royal Randwick Racecourse, Sydney
- Distance: 1200m
- Conditions: Weight-For-Age
- Prize Money: $10 million
- Race Number: Race 8
- Race Time: 4:15pm (AEDT)
- Field Limit: 12 starters
- Qualification: $600,000 entry fee
Before The Everest the previous most lucrative Sydney race was the Group 1 $4 million Queen Elizabeth Stakes (2000m) held at Randwick each April.
That’s during the autumn however, when Sydney already holds the bulk of the big punting opportunities.
The positioning of The Everest on the spring racing calendar has it competing for attention with the bumper 10-race Melbourne card on the same day for Ladbrokes Caulfield Guineas Day, which features four elite level events.
If the racing news headlines are anything to go by, The Everest looks to be winning the battle.
The Everest is a sprint race, so you won’t see any of the Melbourne Cup horses kicking about in the field!
Contested over 1200m it is also run under weight-for-age conditions, not like the handicap conditions of the Melbourne Cup, meaning horses in The Everest field carry weight according to their age and sex.
What really makes The Everest standout from any other horse race in Australia is the fact it is a slot-race.
That means that horses don’t qualify to run via the usual mediums.
Instead the qualification comes via a “buy-in” with slot-holders purchasing a spot at a cost of $600,000 before selecting a horse to fill their position.
The Everest 2017 Prize Money Breakdown
- 1st: $5.8 million
- 2nd: $2.4 million
- 3rd: $800,000
- 4th: $400,000
- 5th: $250,000
- 6th – 12th: $175,000
The Everest winner takes out an incredible $5.8 million for first, while a horse must run at least third ($800,000) to get back the entry fee for their slot-holder.
Just 12 The Everest horses take to the Randwick track and there has been plenty of controversy dubbing the event a race for elitists.
What is for certain is that the line-up in the very first The Everest field is full of elite sprinters.
Of the dozen runners in the Sydney showcase race, seven are Group 1 winners.
The latest The Everest odds at Ladbrokes.com.au feature five single-figure fancies, proving what an intriguing event the punters are in for on Saturday afternoon.
Narrow favourite is last start Moir Stakes winning filly She Will Reign ($4.80) drawn favourably in barrier two and one of a trio of three-year-old fillies in the mix.
This Gary Portelli-trained Golden Slipper winner was a gun juvenile and showed she had lost none of her flair first-up at The Valley with her second Group 1 success.
She is a freakish little thing and all eyes will be on her from the jump.
The dangers in The Everest betting shape-up as market mover Vega Magic ($5) who is a super versatile runner freshened-up since winning Caulfield’s Group 1 Memsie Stakes (1400m) and triple TJ Smith Stakes champion at the track / distance Chautauqua ($5.50).
Stay tuned for our comprehensive The Everest 2017 Form Guide & Betting Tips shortly, checking out the latest odds below in the meantime on the biggest race in Australia!
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