In-form Doleuze stands tall
Exuberant French jockey Olivier Doleuze continued a strong finish to the season when he added a treble yesterday to his pair the previous week and stole the Jockey Challenge honours on one of his favourite horses, Supreme Win.
Doleuze prevailed in a tight finish to the opening race on two-year-old Croesus, then added Royal Knight for Sean Woods on the all-weather track, before Supreme Win pulled out his party trick to sit wide in take the last race.
'It's the same as when I won on him earlier in the season. That day, he drew out wide, he raced wide all of the way and he won,' Doleuze recalled.
'I thought the track was similar today so I rode him similar and won again. He is a funny horse, but I think he likes to have some room around him.'
Supreme Win's season would probably look a bit better than just the two wins but for his consistency and plenty of hold-ups and checks in races that would probably explain his preference for open space.
'The owner asked me at the start of the season to look after this horse, and I've ridden him every start except one and all of his fast gallops and he is really a very nice horse,' Doleuze said.
'He tries very hard all year, he has a big heart and I am so happy that he won again. All season he has been carrying big weights and that has made things difficult.'
The win yesterday will put Supreme Win back over 100 in the ratings, but Doleuze is hopeful the gelding will make the grade in Class One and possibly even the Group Three handicap features.
'I think he's the type of horse who could do well in the Macau Trophy kind of race,' he said.
Earlier, Doleuze had a very comfortable ride around to win in Class Four on the Woods-trained Royal Knight.
'It was a big surprise - for me not for Sean because he expected him to win,' Doleuze said.
'But he had never run on the all-weather track before or over 1,800 metres so I didn't really know what to expect.'
He needn't have worried.
Royal Knight switched off in a mid-field position, but quickly gathered up the leaders when he made his move.
'When I came to the home turn, I'm thinking, wow, he was travelling so well and when I asked him to go, I thought they will have to be very fast to beat me,' he said.
'I think dropping back to Class Four was a big help to him today, he didn't have too much weight and he was too good.'