The Ben, Will & JD Hayes-trained Cox...
Trainer Joe Pride celebrated a third win in the 2020 Missile Stakes at Rosehill on Saturday and said the gutsy win by Eduardo put the horse in line for a potential slot in the $15 million The Everest this spring.
The world’s richest turf race, The Everest 2020 takes place at Royal Randwick on October 17 and to date just two of the 12 slots in the event have been confirmed.
One race earlier in Sydney, speedy the Listed The Rosebud winning colt Anders put his hand up for the slot owned by Aquis Farm.
In the Group 2 $200,000 Missile Stakes (1200m) it was Eduardo’s turn, the Host seven-year-old showing he still had plenty of racing left in him with a brilliant effort late to hold off the Thousand Guineas winner Flit.
Relishing the Heavy conditions on Missile Stakes Day, proven mudlark Eduardo made it two-from-two for his new trainer Pride at Rosehill backing up from his debut for the stable winning the July Sprint (1100m) at the track to rise in grade and take out the Group 2 feature.
With jockey Nash Rawiller continuing associations, the improving sprinter enjoyed a drop back from 58.5kg to 56kg and led from barrier to box joining dual champ Rain Affair (2011, 2013) as the Missile Stakes winners for Pride.
“He was good. The horse has got a bit of fight in him. He’s a good horse as he’s able to make his own luck up on speed and he’s got a good kick,” Pride told Sky Thoroughbred Central after the win.
“He’s beaten some good horses.”
Eduardo won the break, pinging into a clear lead early from Glenall while the resuming Godolphin-raced mare Flit settled into third.
The big gun in the event, 10-time Group 1 winning Kiwi mare Melody Belle meanwhile raced at the tail end of the field throughout and was never in the mix eventually finishing dead last in a disappointing first-up effort.
At the top of the straight Rawiller had them chasing Eduardo who dug deep to hold on in a fighting finish in the final stages with Flit, the fitness edge just giving him the winning advantage.
“He’s got a motor,” Rawiller said post-win.
“He showed exceptional speed out of the gates today and got into his comfort zone quick.
“He got really lost in the straight…but once inside the 150m he really let down well and was strong over the line.
“He come here underdone the other day and he’s taken natural improvement off that.”
The Chris Waller-trained Imaging was luckless in the run home and did well to hold for third rounding out the Missile Stakes trifecta fresh.
When questioned on the upcoming spring plans for Eduardo, Pride was quick to spruik the horse as a genuine contender for The Everest.
“I’m just waiting for a call from a slot holder,” he said.
“I think he’s a really good sprinter and he’s shown in his two runs here he can, one, run 1200 metres and, two, he’s adaptable.
“I think he’d be really hard to beat.”
“He is an exciting horse…on real terms he’s a lot younger than seven so there’s plenty of horse left in him.”
2020 Missile Stakes Results
|Michael, Wayne & John Hawkes
|Brock Ryan (a)
|MISTER SEA WOLF (IRE)
|MELODY BELLE (NZ)
|Ms Rachel King
|Peter & Paul Snowden
|Peter & Paul Snowden
Table Credit: Racing Australia.
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