Sydney Set To Rival Melbourne's Richest Race
Written on the 3 February 2017
The never ending war between Sydney and Melbourne could come to a head when Royal Randwick hosts Australia's richest race, The Everest Sprint at the Spring Carnival in October.
The Melbourne Cup had previously held the title as the richest race in Australia with $6.2 million up for grabs, however, The Everest $10 Million Stakes blows the top off Melbourne's prestigious event.
This race will also be the richest on turf in the world. Only two other thoroughbred races eclipse The Everest in terms of prizemoney - $US12 Million Pegasus World Cup (Florida) and the $US10 Million Dubai World Cup, however, they are run on dirt.
The race is to be run over 1200m with a field of 12 runners and is said to attract the world's best horses. The $600,000 entry fee (not for the faint hearted) will be unique in Australian racing in that the race will be open to local and international buyers to purchase a slot (12 available). The owners of these slots will be able to trade their position or alternatively partner with owners not holding a slot to enter a horse in the final field for the race.
Racing NSW Chief Executive Peter V'landys said, "We are very confident of getting 12 people to buy slots. Those who do buy a slot will also get a share of the additional revenues we generate from the event."
He said that the concept for The Everest has been six months in the planning and is similar to the Pegasus World Cup run in the United States.
"This represents an innovative concept and a tremendous new event to promote thoroughbred racing to a broader audience," V'landys said.
"The $10 million prizemoney pool is to be fully-funded from subscribers and additional revenues generated from the event," V'landys said. "It will not cost the (NSW) racing industry any money." For those people who buy slots, there will be a commitment for three years to ensure The Everest is branded and takes its position on the Sydney racing scene.
It was announced the weight-for-age race will be held on October 14 this year. The Everest has been deliberately programmed for this time to maximise interest and publicity.
"We wanted to run this race where there was no competition from NRL, AFL or cricket," V'landys said. "This is the best time of year to run The Everest as we want to gain as much media coverage as possible for thoroughbred racing."
Australian Turf Club Chairman, Laurie Macri said that The Everest is a joint venture between Racing NSW and ATC, who share a vision to see more Sydney racing on the world stage.
"Royal Randwick itself is an international landmark, and it will now rightly showcase the world's richest sprint over one of the best but most testing 1200m courses anywhere in racing," Macri said.
ATC chief executive Darren Pearce said Sydney racing will only go from strength to strength with the inaugural running of The Everest.
The TAB has rated star sprinter Chautauqua the $6 favourite for the rich dash ahead of Astern and champion mare Winx.
Prizemoney distribution will be awarded as follows:
1st $5.8 million
2nd $1.425 million
6th to 12th $175,000
(Photo from the Royal Randwick Facebook page)