Exciting filly She Will Reign secures spot in the Everest Stakes
The race takes place at Randwick in October
She Will Reign, the Cinderella winner of the Golden Slipper Stakes last week, is set to take her syndicate owners on another giddy adventure after she became the first horse to secure a starting berth in the Everest Stakes.
Scott Darby, whose Darby Racing put together the blue-collar partnership, confirmed that he has negotiated a deal with YuLong Investments for the Manhattan Rain filly to take up a slot in the A$10 million race at Randwick in October - in exchange for a prize-money split.
The new contest - set up on similar principles to the Pegasus, staged for the first time at Gulfstream in January - will be the most valuable ever staged on Australian soil. Investors are able to buy a three-year starting berth in a 12-horse field for the weight-for-age dash at Aus$600,000 per year.
YuLong made an attempt to buy She Will Reign after her maiden success, but had to wait until now to gain a stake in her earning potential.
“Like I said to her 19 owners, this is like a free shot at a A$10 million race,” Darby told the Sydney Morning Herald. “We had looked at possibly buying a slot, but it was too big of a gamble. This way we have a spot in the race and some certainty where we are going in the spring. It is the best of both worlds for us.”
This deal comes as a valuable boost to the Everest, some commentators having responded to the innovation with scepticism on the basis that syndicate owners - one of the defining strengths of the Australian sport - might be reluctant to engage in high-stakes horsetrading.
As it is, the fairytale goes on: a A$20,000 yearling at the Inglis Classic Sale, already winner of the world’s most valuable juvenile race, will now have a shot at the biggest pot ever contested on turf for a syndicate including a nurse, a carpenter, a teacher and three coalminers.