Everest stands mighty
Le Grange-trained last-start $8 beaten favourite ready to recoup the losses
The promising Everest was backed as an extra good thing in his Novice race last start. But he ruined his chances with a tardy start from the widest barrier.
If not for missing the jump and losing precious lengths, the Ricardo Le Grange-trained three-year-old American-bred colt would possibly have won the Polytrack 1,200m event.
He made up good ground at the business-end of the race, but the bird had flown.
Trainer Tim Fitzsimmons' grey Illustrious, who led from the get-go, held on to beat him by a neat length.
The pair meet again in Race 4 tomorrow, but Everest is getting 2.5kg from his conqueror. This should sway things in his favour.
The race has two other last-start winners, Al Meqdam and Dimesso. But they need to be good to scale Everest.
Al Meqdam, a winner in only Open Maiden company on May 29, is resuming from a 31/2-month break and may need the run.
Dimesso also just beat a low Open Maiden field last start on Aug 29. Unless he has improved tremendously, this could be a tall order for him.
Everest has yet to run a bad race. From five starts, he has had a win, two seconds and a third. He has run against the best in his age group and done well.
The first-up Restricted Maiden winner was a 11/2-length third behind Singapore Gold Cup aspirant Tiger Roar in the Group 3 Singapore Three-Year-Old Sprint over 1,200m on June 27.
Everest then finished a creditable sixth behind another Clements-trained up-and-coming galloper, Starlight, in the Group 2 Singapore Three-Year-Old Classic over 1,400m.
Those two runs suggest that Everest is well-above average. He looks hard to beat in a Novice affair with his experience.
Furthermore, he has drawn the inner-most barrier. All he needs to do is to jump on level terms with the field. After that, his class will see him through.