Slot Holder: MiEverest
Breeding: Host – Blushing
Trainer: Joe Pride
Owners: Mr J J W Pride, Mr N Cresci, Mr A J Curran, Buffto’s First Kiss, Mr L Galvin, Mr B Henderson, Miss J A Kaufmann, Ms M Kaye, Mr G J Loiero, Mr N J Pinner, Mr D P Ritchie, Mr A J Rix, Mr B Rodwell, Team T S A, Ungar Family, Dr J R Whitfeld
Jockey: Rachel King
Joe Pride has long been known as a trainer that can improve a horse but even he’s been taken aback by the rapid rise of Eduardo to the point he’ll be Pride’s first TAB Everest runner.
To say the Warwick Farm trainer, no stranger to preparing a classy sprinter, is rapt is an understatement as since the race was born in 2017 he’s coveted a shot at it and is adamant Eduardo can give the 2000 or so micro owners through miRunners a big run for their money.
“I’ve had a lot of good sprinters. When they announced the race I thought that’s a race tailor made for my stable and it’s nice to be part of it,’’ Pride said.
“Ball Of Muscle isn’t a 1200m horse, this would have been a nice race for Terravista in his heyday but it came around after him.”
Eduardo came to Pride earlier this year with a reputation as a potential Group 1 sprinter but was a horse that had lost his way and the trainer said expectations weren’t high.
The seven-year-old made his stable debut with a win in the July Sprint at Rosehill then backed it up with a Group 2 Missile Stakes victory, ticking the 1200m box, in early August and that’s when Pride dared to dream about an Everest.
A gallant second in the Group 2 Shorts (1100m) to Classique Legend confirmed Pride’s thought that he is now Everest material and bullishly said he wouldn’t run him before the race to ensure, if selected, he could perform to his best.
And now miRunners have called he said it’s all systems go and he’ll have a trial next week to top him off. Rachel King has the ride in the TAB Everest.
“The horse is just in tip top order, I could not be happier with him,’’ he said.
“I know you hear trainers say that all the time but honestly I’m just so happy with the horse and I can’t wait to get him to the Everest.
“We’re not making up the numbers, we are a serious chance in the race.”
MiRunners CEO Steve Brown said Eduardo had long been on the radar of the selection panel, which includes Lizzie Jelfs, Mark Waugh, Dan O’Sullivan and Tye Angland, and given they needed to replace the injured Rothfire he became an obvious choice.
“The panel had an eye on him for a while and the improvement that Joe has been able to bring to this horse has us a little bit excited,’’ he said.
“If he improves a little bit from the Shorts run he’s right in this race.
“If he had a better run, he was posted wide, then he may have won that race and we wouldn’t be even having this discussion.’’