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November 7, 2021

The Australian Turf Club’s Spring racing program at Rosehill Gardens and Royal Randwick has concluded eight weeks of world-class racing and delivered significant increases across key areas.

Almost $50 million in prizemoney was won across eight Saturday meetings from 18 September to 6 November – including the world’s richest race on turf the $15 million TAB Everest and Australia’s third-richest race the $7.5 million XXXX Golden Eagle.

Total prizemoney distributed to owners, trainers, jockeys and racing industry participants across the eight weeks increased by 14 percent (up from $43.4 million in 2020).

From Fujitsu George Main Stakes Day on 18 September at Royal Randwick to Golden Gift Day at Rosehill Gardens, 29 Group and Listed races were run, including six Group I races.

A total of 902 starters competed – an increase of 122 runners from last Spring in Sydney. The fifth renewal of the $15 million TAB Everest rated as the world’s highest sprint race won by the world’s highest rated sprinter in Nature Strip, trained by Sydney’s reigning II-time premiership winner Chris Waller and ridden by champion jockey James McDonald.

The $7.5 million XXXX Golden Eagle in its third consecutive running was again won by a Group I winner in I’m Thunderstruck, trained by Melbourne’s Mick Price and Michael Kent Jr and ridden by Hugh Bowman.

Two of the Australian Turf Club’s flagship Spring races – the Group I $1.5 million TAB Epsom and Group I $750,000 Heineken Metropolitan –  were won by leading Sydney trainers.

Warwick Farm trainer Joe Pride continued a highly successful Sydney Spring with Private Eye’s victory in the TAB Epsom for young jockey Regan Bayliss, while Rosehill Gardens trainer David Payne added another Group I to the career of star mare Montefilia with Hugh Bowman aboard in the Heineken Metropolitan.

Future stars were unearthed in the Group I $750,000 Darley Flight Stakes with Never Been Kissed for  trainers Gai Waterhouse and Adrian Bott and a second Group I on the day for rider Regan Bayliss, while Profondo, trained at Warwick Farm by Richard Litt, won the Group I $1 million Moet & Chandon Spring Champion Stakes and a first Group I in Sydney for jockey Robbie Dolan.

Australian Horse of the Year Verry Elleegant took out the Group I feature on the opening day of the Everest Carnival – the $1 million Fujitsu General George Main Stakes for Chris Waller and James McDonald – prior to adding the Melbourne Cup to her stellar record.

Leading rider over the eight weeks was Nash Rawiller (54 points) – who won 15 races and on a 3-2-1 points basis edged out James McDonald on 53 points.

Two horses also won significant prizemoney bonuses; Think It Over for trainer Kerry Parker and jockey Nash Rawiller received a $1 million bonus for completing the Yulong Craven Plate and Kypreos Rosehill Gold Cup double.

In a six-start Sydney campaign Think It Over also won the Group 2 Yulong Hill Stakes at Royal Randwick on TAB Epsom Day, 2 October.

Joe Pride’s multiple Group I winning sprinter Eduardo with jockey Nash Rawiller also took out a $750,000 bonus for winning the Classique Legend Stakes at Rosehill Gardens after starting and running second in the TAB Everest.

Australian Turf Club Executive General Manager Racing and Wagering James Ross said Sydney’s growing and innovative Spring Racing program had again delivered world-class performances.

“Sydney racing’s Spring combination of the newest and biggest races in Australia coupled with amongst the nation’s most established and prestigious Group events has been a huge success,” Mr Ross said.

“The horses, trainers and jockeys have been world-class and continue to elevate the Sydney Spring on the international stage.

“The $15 million TAB Everest is fully established as the world’s best sprint race and is talked about around the world all year.

“The XXXX Golden Eagle in just three years is also proving to be a major success with a third Group I winner in three years winning.”

The XXXX Golden Eagle also continued to attract international runners with three UK horses competing – Laws of Indices (5th), Maximal (6th) and Reve De Vol (11th), with each horse remaining in training in Sydney to continue their racing careers. 

A comprehensive review, results and statistics service for all group and blacktype races along with other key feature Sydney races from 21 August to 6 November can be found here.




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