The field for this year’s $20 million The Everest has been finalised after Yulong confirmed its runner for this Saturday’s 1200-metre event.
The Gai Waterhouse and Adrian Bott-trained mare Alcohol Free, who was bought by Yulong for more than $10 million last year, will run in the Yulong slot.
WATCH THE VIDEO ABOVE: Joe Pride discusses Everest chance Think About It.
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It ends speculation that star Kiwi mare Imperatriz would be recruited to run in what was the last slot to be filled and Yulong’s operations manager Sam Fairgray said it was great that one of their own would represent Yulong.
“We’re thrilled that Alcohol Free is running in the green and white in the upcoming Everest,” Fairgray said.
“She embodies the world-class performance that Mr Zhang has built the Yulong brand to represent.
Jockey Rob Hornby and Alcohol Free after winning the Darley July Cup Stakes last year. Credit: PA Images via Getty Images
“We are confident that she will offer an excellent opportunity for us in the race, upholding Yulong’s successful history in The Everest.”
Yulong tasted success in the world’s richest turf race when Redzel won the 2018 edition as Yulong’s representative.
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Craig Williams, who won last year’s The Everest aboard Giga Kick, will ride Alcohol Free.
A four-time Group 1 winner in Europe, Alcohol Free is in her second campaign in Australia and resumed with a fourth placing, beaten 2-3/4 lengths, in the Group 2 Premiere Stakes at Randwick on September 30.
Waterhouse is thrilled that the daughter of No Nay Never joins Premiere Stakes runner-up Hawaii Five Oh as her representatives in the race.
“We are delighted that she has gained at start in the race, ridden by Craig Williams, who of course is already a winner of the race,” Waterhouse said.
The Everest Field for 2023. Credit: 7Horse Racing
“It was a good run in the Premiere Stakes, and she really needed that to take the edge off her freshness. I believe she is absolutely spot on now.
“Yulong have become a major player in the Australian breeding and racing scene, Adrian and myself are very excited that she can represent Yulong in their silks and in their slot.”
Alcohol Free is the outsider in most markets on The Everest with T J Smith Stakes winner I Wish I Win favourite from Premiere Stakes winner Think About It.
The barrier draw will be held on Tuesday night at 8pm AEDT. Betting has been suspended until after the draw
The Everest and the Caulfield Guineas (the blue riband race for three-year-olds) are run at Royal Randwick and Caulfield Racecourse respectively from midday on October 14, live and free on Channel 7 and 7plus.
The Everest is anticipated to start at 4.15pm AEDT.
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