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Ace hoop Kerrin McEvoy will attempt a hat-trick of wins in The Everest 2020 committing to rideexciting grey Classique Legend in the world’s richest turf race this spring.
McEvoy won the opening two editions of the now iconic The Everest race at Royal Randwick aboard dual champion Redzel in 2017 and 2018.
Last Sydney Spring Racing Carnival the champion jockey attempted a third win the 1200m buy-in sprint.
He partnered the two-time defending champion, but only managed to run eighth on a brave Redzel behind Chris Waller’s three-year-old winner Yes Yes Yes.
McEvoy returns in 2020 to ride the Les Bridge-trained Classique Legend for owner Bon Ho, the Not A Single Doubt gelding finishing a luckless sixth in the race last year with Nash Rawiller aboard.
A rising five-year-old, Classique Legend has amassed over $1.5 million in stakes over just nine career starts.
The horse boasts four wins and three other minor placings ahead of his spring return and was last seen winning the Listed $150,000 June Stakes (1100m) at Randwick with McEvoy in the saddle early last month.
Winner of the lucrative Group 2 Arrowfield 3YO Sprint (1200m) last April, Classique Legend remains an untapped source according to McEvoy who can’t wait for the $15 million The Everest on October 17.
He’s obviously an exciting horse and I’m keen to see where he can get to,” he told Racing NSW.
“He impressed us all, Les, myself and Carmel (Size), when he won back in June and I feel that he’s a horse whose best is still ahead of him.
“Hopefully that is the case because he has to step up to another level again and that’s the level that Nature Strip holds at the moment.
“And who knows there might be another young three-year-old that comes along as well.”
Current all-in The Everest odds at Ladbrokes.com.au have Classique Legend at $10.
He trails Waller’s four-time Group 1 champion Nature Strip ($3.80) who placed fourth in the event last year and the James Cummings-trained colt Bivouac ($9) in futures The Everest betting.
Classique Legend (Bon Ho) and Nature Strip (TAB) are the only two currently confirmed The Everest contenders in the 12-horse race.
The other The Everest Slot holders still to select their runners are: Mieverest, James Harron Bloodstock, Yu Long Investments, The Star, Max Whitby, Godolphin, Aquis, Inglis and Chris Waller Racing who won last year with Yes Yes Yes.
McEvoy admits Nature Strip looks a hard to beat favourite, but remains hopeful his horse gets to that top level come The Everest Day.
“It’s as though the Waller team have worked out a formula with him (Nature Strip) and he’s put those blots in his copybook out the window,”’ he said.
“He showed that last preparation, he has become more reliable, and I’m sure if he comes back in similar form, he is going to take plenty of beating.
“You go into every race hoping your horse turns up and it’s the same with any race any day of the week.
“That’s what everyone competing on Everest Day is hoping for, your horse turns up and things go your way.”
Click here for the latest The Everest 2020 betting futures courtesy of Ladbrokes.com.au.
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