Kerrin McEvoy will be one of the most recognisable faces riding at Saturday’s Shergar Cup fixture with the Australian having spent four years riding in Britain from 2004.
During that time he rode as second jockey to Godolphin and picked up several big races, including the St Leger on Rule Of Law in his first season.
Since returning to Australia, McEvoy has continued to be one of the top jockeys and heads into action against teams from Great Britain & Ireland, Europe and The Girls aiming to carry the Shergar Cup trophy back Down Under.
You have been feeling a little ill since arriving in Britain. How are you getting on now?
I’m improving. I’m hoping I’ll improve again and I can head to Ascot on Saturday feeling better and ready to roll. I’m looking forward to it.
You are captain of the Rest of the World team, which also contains Anthony Delpech and Keita Tosaki. What advice will you be giving them?
I’ve not spoken to them at length about Ascot but we’ve got plenty of time before racing starts to chat about the track and whatnot. The main advice I would be giving to Anthony and Keita is to be patient. Ascot is a stiff old track whether that be on the round or the straight course.
How important is it that you work as a team?
It’s a team event but at the same you’re riding each horse individually. It’s all about trying to do the best for your connections and hoping your scores add up to the best at the end of the day. You approach it much the same as any other day.
In general, do you think the Shergar Cup is good for racing?
Definitely. It’s getting better and better each year and there are not many events like it. It’s great to be taking part and hopefully I can get a winner.
You are prominent in the betting for the Silver Saddle, the prize for leading rider at the meeting. Is that a fair reflection of the rides you have?
I think so. I’ve got nice rides and I think that gives me a good chance of picking up the Silver Saddle. I’ll certainly be trying to be leading rider on the day, that’s for sure.
Which ride are you most looking forward to?
I ride a nice horse for Andrew Balding in the Shergar Cup Classic (3.25) called CONTANGO. He looks to be a horse that’s on the up and is improving. I’m really looking forward to getting on him.
Back home in Australia, which horse is getting you excited?
Our springtime is coming up and the good races are all starting to happen over there. There’s one filly I’m looking forward to getting back on when her campaign starts called EGG TART, who is trained by Chris Waller. She’s a month off having a run and I like her a lot.
There were no Australian sprinters at Royal Ascot this year. Is that just a blip?
I’d say so. If I was a horse owner I’d be jumping at the chance to bring a horse to Royal Ascot. I’m sure the way our breeding is in Australia we’ll be producing more top-class sprinters to come over in the years to come.
And, finally, do you think the Europeans can make an impact at the Spring Carnivals coming up?
I’ve not had a good look at what might be entered but I’m really interested to see what Charlie Appleby brings over for Godolphin. He did really well last year and I was lucky enough to get the ride on a few of them. The likes of Francis Of Assisi and Qewy won nice races and I’m hoping a good few will come down as Charlie sure knows how to travel them.