Multiple Group 1 winner Santa Ana Lane can stamp himself as the best sprinter in Australia with a win for slot owners TAB in the 2019 $14m The Everest (1200m) at Randwick on October 19.
Santa Ana Lane could only manage to finish sixth behind Redzel on a heavy track in the 2018 The Everest ($13 million) but the Anthony Freedman trained gelding has won twice at Group 1 level since and has been installed as the $5.50 favourite at Ladbrokes.com.au for this year’s The Everest.
Santa Ana Lane was quick to bounce back after his 2018 Everest defeat with a win in the Group 1 $1m VRC Sprint Classic (1200m) at Flemington on the last day of the 2018 Melbourne Cup Carnival on November 10.
The classy sprinter then resumed in the 2019 Sydney Autumn Carnival to claim his fifth Group 1 trophy with a win over the same course and distance as The Everest in the $2.5m Aquis T J Smith Stakes on Day One of The Championships.
Freedman then took his chance for some overseas success in Hong Kong but Santa Ana Lane missed a place when fourth in the Group 1 HKD$16m The Chairman’s Sprint Prize (1200m) at Sha Tin in Hong Kong on April 28.
Santa Ana Lane has returned to the stable and is in the early stages of his Spring Carnival preparation and stable representative Sam Freedman believes that the rising seven year old will prove to be the number one sprinter in the country.
“We’re pretty certain he is the best,” Sam Freedman told The Everest News Desk.
“When he gets the right pace and a fair track, a genuinely run race, there isn’t a better sprinter in the country.”
“He has shown that in the VRC Sprint and T J Smith. So if the track isn’t like it was last year we’d hope he would show he is the best sprinter out there.”
“The Hong Kong trip hasn’t hurt him at all, when he came back in we were looking to make sure his characteristics are as they normally are.”
Freedman said that Santa Ana Lane’s comeback run hasn’t been locked in as yet but added that the stable has plenty of time to map out his lead up program to The Everest.
“We have plenty of time until The Everest,” Sam Freedman said.
“He has a couple of weeks of cantering then he’ll build up with pace work and he’s about six weeks off a trial.”
Early betting at Ladbrokes.com.au for the 2019 The Everest has Santa Ana Lane marked as the $ 5.50 favourite ahead of the James Cummings trained Osborne Bulls at $7 and Arcadia Queen and Pierata at $8.
Pre-post betting for the 2019 The Everest at Ladbrokes.com.au: $5.50 Santa Ana Lane, $7 Osborne Bulls, $8 Arcadia Queen, Pierata, $9 Sunlight, $10 Classique Legend, $11 Redzel, $12 Nature Strip, $13 Alizee, In Her Time, $15 Brutal, $17 Graff, $21 Enticing Star, Hot King Prawn, Zoustyle, $26 Advertise, The Bostonian, $34 or better the rest.