By Ray Hickson
Glyn Schofield would love to ride gun four-year-old Kementari in The Everest.
But his job at Royal Randwick on Saturday is to guide the Godolphin star to victory in the Group 2 $200,000 Missile Stakes (1200m) and confirm what most observers already believe – that he’d be a live chance in Australia’s richest race.
Schofield boasts an unbeaten record on Kementari from three rides, taking out the Eskimo Prince, Hobartville Stakes and Randwick Guineas in his first three starts the autumn.
“I’d be keen to ride him anywhere,’’ Schofield said.
“He’s filled me with a lot of confidence every time I’ve ridden him so I’ll ride him wherever he goes so long as they want me.
“James (Cummings) has spoken about (The Everest) openly, he hasn’t secured himself a spot at the moment but there’s a fair way to go and things can change.
“He’d give the race a lot more panache without doubt.’’
The Eskimo Prince win, run over the 1200m, was particularly dynamic as Punters Intel illustrates. He ran his last 600m in 33.75, which was 0.38 faster than any other runner, and his last 200m in 11.33 (0.39 faster than next best).
Given Kementari is the $7 third favourite in TAB’s Everest market it’s no surprise he’s a warm $2 elect to add the Missile to his growing CV.
But he isn’t the only Missile runner out to impress slot holders with the race containing hopefuls She Will Reign, Pierata, Showtime and Music Magnate.
Schofield had his first sit on Kementari since his Randwick Guineas success in March when he ran third behind She Will Reign in a 900m Rosehill trial on July 23 and said he saw nothing to change his enthusiasm for the horse.
“Physically I didn’t see a great deal of difference with him, he’s obviously at the beginning of his prep and he’s a lot fresher,’’ he said.
Kementari runs third in the 900m trial at Rosehill on July 23
“He trialled really well without a great deal of pressure in the trial. I’m just rapt to be back on him.’’
Kementari took on open company in two runs in the autumn following his Group 1 win, running third to Winx and Happy Clapper in the George Ryder and a luckless 10th as favourite in the Doncaster Mile.
He has a 2-1 record against current Everest favourite Trapeze Artist from last season and Schofield said Kementari has always filled him with confidence.
“Whichever race I ride him in I go in with that mindset,’’ he said.
“He can adapt his running style to suit the race as we’ve seen previously.
“He’s arguably the best performed three-year-old colt last year. He’s proven himself against the older horses already and now it’s about seeing how he comes back and performs. From his trial he feels pretty good to me.’’
With the shock withdrawal of Menari from The Everest on Wednesday through injury there are three slots remaining in the $13 million sprint on October 13.