Slot Holder: Greg Ingham (GPI Racing)
Encosta De Lago – Lovely Jubly
Trainer: Team Hawkes (Rosehill)
BOOM! The grey flash Chautauqua produced one of the most jaw-dropping performances seen on an Australian race track when taking out his third consecutive Group One TJ Smith Stakes at Royal Randwick over The Championships. He gave his rivals what looked an impossible start but clicked into top gear in the last 100m to grab English. He absolutely loves Randwick and will be a force to be reckoned with come October 14.
The superstar gelding will be without regular rider Tommy Berry who will be riding in Hong Kong at the time. That leaves Dwayne Dunn as the likely pilot for the current favourite of The Everest. Chautauqua may be a seven-year-old but co-trainer Michael Hawkes believes the flashy grey looks as good as ever ahead of the spring.
“Physically, he is better. It’s more the maturity side that is starting to kick in. Hopefully he has another year or two of racing at the top level being so lightly raced,” Hawkes said.
“(The Everest) is great for racing and when I was overseas everybody was talking about it. I think it’s a great incentive and creates so much interest both home and abroad. It’s something we’re looking forward to given we’ve got a genuine contender.”