Champion jockey James McDonald is not one to make outlandish statements about horses so when he says one could be an Everest prospect — take note.
On Saturday, McDonald has another strong hand for the feature Rosehill meeting that is headlined by three Group 2 races — the Theo Marks Stakes, Run To The Rose Stakes and Sheraco Stakes.
The return of Golden Slipper winner Farnan and Queenslander Rothfire in the Run To The Rose will spark The Everest interest but Sydney’s leading jockey also believes the Sheraco Stakes could prove a pointer to the $15 million race.
The world’s richest sprint will be run at Randwick on October 17 and eight of the 12 places remain up for grabs with less than six weeks until the weight-for-age contest.
McDonald is locked in to ride the $3 favourite in The Everest, while Group 3 Concorde Stakes winner Gytrash (Inglis), Classique Legend (Bon Ho) and Rothfire (miRunners) have also been confirmed as runners while Farnan is in the box seat to claim the slot of his part owner Aquis Farm.
One Sheraco Stakes runner that has been spruiked as a candidate for one of the remaining spots in The Everest is Joe Pride’s Fasika but according to McDonald, she’s not the only mare in Saturday contest capable of mixing it with Australia’s best sprinters.
“They are talking Fasika as a possible Everest horse so let me put it this way, Haut Brion Her will be worthy competition to that mare in the Sheraco,” McDonald said.
“I love this mare, she is absolutely flying.
“If she comes out and blows them away first-up she might be an Everest horse, that’s the feel she’s been giving me.
“I think she will show she’s a very good sprinter this preparation.”
Punters wasted no time coming for Haut Brion Her in TAB.com.au’s pre final field market for the Sheraco Stakes.
The daughter of Zoustar firmed from $11 into $6 on Monday while Fasika’s quote trimmed from $3 to $2.40 and Toy Show Quality winner Sweet Idea eased from $4 out to $6.
TAB has Haut Brion Her listed as a $101 chance for The Everest and her trainer Chris Waller is yet to announce the runner for the Chris Waller racing slot.