Racing

Beuzelin the Knight rider

Frenchman excited to partner QE II Cup champ

When good things happen, it's normally a one-off thing.

Well, sometimes the script gets changed. Like now. And it all seems to be working well for Louis-Philippe Beuzelin.

Not only will the French jockey get to partner the "defending champion" in Saturday's running of the Queen Elizabeth II Cup.

There is every indication that he will be the jockey of choice on Top Knight when the Singapore Gold Cup rolls along on Nov 14.

But, as they say, "first things first" - and the first thing Beuzelin must wrap his minds around is the assignment on Saturday.

And he's got a good feel. That, after Top Knight ran second in the Raffles Cup with him on board.

That day, the ride came his way when Top Knight's regular rider, Vlad Duric, became indisposed.

Trainer Michael Clements had used Beuzelin before and the Frenchman was his first choice when the seat became vacant for the "Raffles".

Now that Duric is taking an extended break from race riding to return to Australia because of his health issues, Beuzelin has again become the beneficiary.

Not one to look a gift horse in the mouth, he is excited about Saturday's race and, of course, his ride.

"It has always been an ambition of mine to ride Top Knight in a big race," he said.

"The opportunity has come up with Vlad leaving, and as I've always been loyal to Michael, riding work for him every day, I was glad I got the job.

"I am not worried about Top Knight not winning for a while. He picked up too many points after the Gold Cup, and the distances he was running didn't suit him.

"I really liked his last start in the Raffles Cup even though it was not his best trip, plus it was on the short course.

"The QEII Cup trip on the long course will suit him better. He'll be going in to defend his title.

"A bit of rain will be to his advantage, just like it was last year, when he won. It was pouring during the race.

"He loves a soft track. When others are slowed down by a soft track, he keeps going, and the further it is, the better it is for him."

Besides last year's Queen Elizabeth II Cup, Duric won two other Group 1 races on Top Knight - the Singapore Guineas and the Singapore Derby.

HORSE RACING