O’Brien Passes TJ Smith for Group 1 Wins Targets The Everest
The richest race in turf racing is drawing nigh, with only about four months to go until Randwick stages the inaugural The Everest and as might be expected, the $10 million prize pool is drawing interest from around the world.
Considering the cost and logistics of sending a hefty thoroughbred racehorse halfway around the world by airplane, it is a difficult proposition to ponder without at least the possibility of a hefty return on investment.
Aidan O’Brien, considered a training genius, although when you throw in the word Irish when speaking of O’Brien, it takes on a slightly oxymoronic quality, is contemplating sending some of his horses to Sydney for The Everest.
O’Brien is coming off his sixth win in the English Derby with his horse Wings Of Eagles, is testing his sprinters to find the best one or two to possibly make the journey to Oz.
That information comes courtesy of Tom Magnier of Coolmore’s Australia operation.
Coolmore is possessor of a slot in The Everest and is also looking at some of its horses from Australia, although no decision on which one sprinter to occupy the barrier will not be made until sometime after the trialing at Royal Ascot is concluded.
Winning the Irish Derby for the sixth time was especially poignant for O’Brien, as the win gave him 283 Group 1 wins for his training career. That number put him one beyond T.J Smith for the record for most number of Group 1 wins.
He has raced his horses throughout the world, but his only big win in Australia came courtesy of Fawkner in the 2014 Cox Plate. The folks who occupy the privileged set of Sydney racing would be enormously cheered if they can lure O’Brien down under for The Everest.
Notable Aussie horses with sights set on the Everest include Russian Revolution, Redzel and Golden Slipper winner She Will Reign.