McEvoy eyes century on return to Saturday racing
CHAMPION jockey Kerrin McEvoy returns to Sydney Saturday racing for the first time in over a month at Royal Randwick on Saturday, needing only one more winner to bring up a century of wins for the season.
McEvoy rests on 99.5 wins on all tracks this season, including five at Group 1 level plus the inaugural running of The Everest.
"It's been a pretty good season with the five majors but winning The Everest on Redzel was definitely the highlight,'' McEvoy said.
McEvoy said he was looking forward to "the good horses returning" ,in particular Redzel and his defence of the $13 million The Everest, and the opportunity to reunite with unbeaten colt The Autumn Sun, winner of the JJ Atkins Stakes, and Queensland Oaks winner Youngstar.
"Redzel is an outstanding sprinter and he will be a great chance in all the big sprints, including The Everest,'' McEvoy said.
"I won Group 1 races on The Autumn Sun and Youngstar in Brisbane and they are both very promising young horses that are going to progress in the spring.''
McEvoy resumed riding at the midweeks after taking a mid-year family vacation and he is getting straight "back to work" with a full book of nine rides at Randwick.
They include emerging young stayer Ombudsman, who is into $1.70 favouritism with TAB Fixed Odds for the Book Spring Now Handicap (2400m). The race has been depleted with five scratchings, reducing the field to just four starters.
Ombudsman was ridden by Corey Brown when he produced a powerful staying effort to win over the Randwick 2400m course two weeks ago. McEvoy said he had studied replays of Ombudsman's effort and was impressed by the three-year-old.
"I thought Ombudsman's win was very good, he rounded the race off strongly,'' McEvoy said.
"There is a bit of speed out of the race now and it is only a small field but he is in with a lightweight.''
McEvoy is being reunited with the consistent Easy Eddie in the feature race, the July Sprint (1100m).
The Joe Pride-trained galloper won at Randwick's Kensington track with McEvoy in the saddle four starts back and has since won at Rosehill and finished third to Albumin there last week.
"He scored a nice win for me a few starts back and he's holding his form,'' McEvoy said.
"This is a stronger race (Saturday) but he has drawn well which is an advantage in a race where there is a fair bit of speed. He should enjoy a nice run and get his chance.''
McEvoy said he was looking forward to riding comeback filly Seaglass in the #TheRaces Handicap (1200m).
Seaglass, trained by Peter and Paul Snowden, has won two of her four starts but hasn't raced since finishing second to Maddison Avenue at Hawkesbury back in September.
Stewards reported the filly underwent surgery to remove bone chips from her near fore knee after her last-start loss.
Having put Seaglass through her paces in a recent Randwick barrier trial, McEvoy believes the filly is forward enough to race well on Saturday.
"She has come back in really good order and she has drawn a barrier (two) so she should get the right run,'' he said.
McEvoy also teams with the Snowden stable on the in-form Onslaught in the Australian Turf Club Handicap (1400m).
Onslaught is coming off a runaway four-length win at Sandown and he is a winner over today's course and distance, but the sprinter's task has been made difficult by the barrier draw - gate 15.
McEvoy's other rides are Monte Ditto ($26, race 1), Butchoy ($10, race 2), Pelethronius ($21, race 4), Sepoy Acheva ($7, race 6) and Black Chilli ($14, race 8).