McEvoy and Redzel eye an­other Flem­ing­ton win

Mercury (Hobart) - - SPORT - LIN­COLN MOORE

THE sec­ond rich­est horse in Aus­tralian rac­ing his­tory can com­plete a fab­u­lous Flem­ing­ton Car­ni­val for cham­pion South Aus­tralian jockey Ker­rin McEvoy to­day.

The three-time Mel­bourne Cup­win­ning rider will be back aboard one of his favourite horses Redzel, who trails only Winx ($22.3 mil­lion) in ca­reer earn­ings with more than $15.3 mil­lion in the bank, in to­day’s $1 mil­lion VRC Sprint Clas­sic.

Fresh from their win in the $13 mil­lion Ever­est in Syd­ney last month, Redzel also boasts an im­pos­ing record at Flem­ing­ton.

He won down the straight on Oaks Day in 2016, he beat a hot field that in­cluded Chau­tauqua and Vega Magic in this race last year, be­fore fin­ish­ing run­ner-up be­hind Red­kirk War­rior in the Group 1 Light­ing Stakes back in Fe­bru­ary.

McEvoy, who has based him­self in Mel­bourne dur­ing the Mel­bourne Spring Car­ni­val, re­turned to Syd­ney to ride Redzel in a re­cent Rosehill bar­rier trial and said the star sprinter was in good shape for his re­turn to Mel­bourne.

“Redzel felt great in the trial, he cer­tainly hasn’t gone back­wards since The Ever­est,’’ McEvoy said.

“He’s in the zone at the mo­ment and he does en­joy rac­ing down the Flem­ing­ton straight.”

McEvoy boasts a bril­liant record on the Peter and Paul Snow­den-trained sprinter.

He’s rid­den Redzel 13 times for eight wins, fin­ished run­ner-up on three oc­ca­sions while they fin­ished fourth be­hind English in the Doomben 10,000 in May and fifth be­hind Good­wood win­ner and VRC Sprint ri­val Santa Ana Lane in the Premier Stakes on Septem­ber 29.

Co-trainer Paul Snow­den said the VRC Sprint Clas­sic was al­ways the tar­get af­ter his sec­ond suc­ces­sive Ever­est vic­tory in Oc­to­ber.

“He came through the race (Ever­est) too well,’’ Snow­den said yes­ter­day.

“We had the op­tion of run­ning in the Manikato and could have run him there, but it’s all about this race.

“The horse is in mag­nif­i­cent or­der and fan­tas­tic shape and we can’t wait to un­leash him.

“I’d have to say he’s even bet­ter than last year.”

Snow­den said Redzel’s great­est as­set was his adapt­abil­ity in his races and they’d leave all rac­ing tac­tics in the ca­pa­ble hands of McEvoy.

“You can play it by ear,’’ Snow­den said. “That’s the beauty of the horse.

“They will be all look­ing for us, whereas we don’t have to look for any­thing else too much.

“I’m sure Ker­rin (McEvoy) will work it out on the day.

“That’s prob­a­bly why it gives you so much con­fi­dence go­ing into races with this horse.

“He doesn’t have to rely on any­thing to put speed on or de­te­ri­o­ra­tion of the track or if there is rain on the day, he just ex­cels in ev­ery­thing.”

Redzel felt great in the trial, he cer­tainly hasn’t gone back­wards since The Ever­est.

Ker­rin McEvoy

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