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Image: Steve Hart
Gordon Richards has made some tweaks to Gytrash's training ahead of his Classique Legend Stakes mission.

Gordon Richards has turned to the water walker to help revive the Sydney spring carnival form of star South Australian sprinter Gytrash following his Everest flop.

After resuming with an unlucky third behind Nature Strip and Eduardo in The Shorts, the gelding turned in an uncharacteristically poor performance in the $15 million race, finishing a well-beaten seventh.

It was an effort that left connections deflated and searching for answers.

“That was the worst run he’s put in,” Richards said.

“He didn’t run well in the Kingsford-Smith, but he got flattened there when he was moving into the race, so we had an excuse.

“But apart from him pulling up a bit scratchy from The Everest, it was a disappointing run, so we’ll just be hoping for a better run.”

Gytrash was ruled to be mildly lame in the near-foreleg post-race but has since received a veterinary clearance.

Richards has given him time to get over the effort and made adjustments to his training regime to freshen him for Saturday’s Classique Legend Stakes (1300m) at Rosehill and the trainer is optimistic Gytrash is back on track.

“He has spent a bit of time on the water walker, which he is used to in South Australia, just to keep his legs a bit fresher,” Richards said.

“He was a little bit stiff and sore afterwards (following The Everest) but he got over that pretty quickly and he’s done well.

“He had a gallop here at Warwick Farm on Saturday and another good one on Tuesday and he’s rearing to go.”

The winner of the corresponding race last year, Gytrash will have to defend his title from barrier 13 and against a full field of 15 rivals.

Three of the first four horses across the line in last year’s renewal – Gytrash, runner-up Haut Brion Her and fourth placed Eduardo – all came through The Everest and Richards again expects the pinnacle sprint to be the best form reference at Rosehill.

“I think so. The horses who finished up there in The Everest, the Eduardos and the Masked Crusaders and the like, are going to be hard to beat,” he said.

Up to six horses who contested The Everest could line up in the Classique Legend Stakes with Lost And Running (fourth), Trekking (sixth) and Libertini (eighth) joining Gytrash in Saturday’s race.

Everest minor placegetters Masked Crusader and Eduardo are both among the acceptances, but connections will decide closer to race time whether they take their place, or head to Melbourne for a rematch with Nature Strip in the Darley Sprint Classic a week later.

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