Richest race on turf to be staged in Australia

Randwick will stage the The Everest in October

PICTURE: Getty Images The Everest unveiled as new richest turf race By David Baxter 8:03AM 1 FEB 2017

FROM October 14, the richest race in Australia will no longer be the Melbourne Cup following the news that a new A$10 million sprint called The Everest has been created at Randwick.

The inaugural running of the world's richest race, the $12m Pegasus World Cup at Gulfstream Park in America, took place last weekend and Australia has now laid down its international marker with The Everest, which will be staged at Randwick as part of the 2017 Spring Racing Carnival.

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Its purse of $A10m (£6.02m, €7.02m) means The Everest becomes the richest race in the world on turf, and borrowing from the Pegasus World Cup, owners will be able to buy a spot in the 12-horse field with a three-year commitment for A$600,000 a year. Spots will also be able to be traded.

The A$10m prize-fund easily surpasses the Melbourne Cup, which is worth $A6.2m. Europe's richest race, the Prix de l'Arc de Triomphe, was run last year for €5m (£4.3m). Britain's richest race, the Investec Derby, will have a new record prize-fund of £1.5m this year.

Announcing the news on Wednesday, Racing New South Wales chairman Russell Balding said: "It is a game changer for racing in Sydney."

Australian Turf Club chairman Laurie Macri added that the decision to create the world's richest sprint was to play to the strengths of the horse population in Sydney.

"Our sprinting division is the strongest in the world and we think they deserve an opportunity to showcase them to the world," he said.

Chautauqua, who recently returned to action, would be a likely contender for the race, with rider Dwayne Dunn reporting the grey felt like his old self again, having disappointed when last seen in October.

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