Gordon Richards will cherish his Everest experience with Gytrash for a long time to come, but a consolation victory in the Yes Yes Yes Stakes will make it even sweeter.
While Gytrash could not match the finishing burst of winner Classique Legend in the $15 million show-stopper, he did connections proud with a brave third.
“Considering it was the race we’d set him for, to actually get in it was a big thing and we will remember it forever,” Richards said.
“He did us proud. He was fantastic.”
The hectic early tempo in The Everest made it a tough race for all involved but Richards was surprised by how well his stable star coped.
Generally a horse who enjoys his runs spaced, Gytrash came through it in such good order, Richards did not have to think twice about running him at Rosehill on Saturday.
“He could have run again three days later he was that good so we had no hesitation going for the Yes Yes Yes with him,” he said.
The Rosehill feature will present a couple of fresh challenges for Gytrash when he extends to 1300m and faces the likelihood of a heavy track, both for the first time.
Richards believes Gytrash has been strong enough at the end of shorter races to suggest an extra 100m won’t pose a problem, and the sprinter has been adept on slow ground.
However, the combination of a heavily rain-affected track and a distance rise could make for a testing assignment.
“His run in The Everest certainly didn’t lack any finish. He’s won over 1200 at Flemington and he got to the front a bit too early in the Goodwood when he just got run down by Trekking,” Richards said.
“It (distance) holds no fear for me but sometimes a heavy track can make it a tougher run, or make it seem like a longer race.”
Along with first prize money of $580,000, Gytrash will also be racing for a $750,000 bonus available to any horse who contests The Everest or Sydney Stakes and wins the Yes Yes Yes.
“We can handle that,” Richards said.
“It’s a rich race and there is an extra bonus if he wins it so we’ll be out there trying.”
Richards returned to Adelaide, via a short holiday in Canberra, following The Everest but will fly back into Sydney in time to be trackside at Rosehill.