Team Rest Of The World Looking Forward To Shergar Cup

Christophe Lemaire | Horsephotos

A few days out from the Dubai Duty Free Shergar Cup, five jockeys, including the entire Rest of the World Team, were on hand to answer questions from the media at Ascot Racecourse. Held on Aug. 6, four teams (GB & Ire, Rest of the World, Europe, and Ladies) will compete across eight races gathering points, with awards handed out for the top team and top rider. Rest of the World Team Captain Christophe Lemaire was joined by the Australian-based pair of Kerrin McEvoy and Jason Collett, as well as Japan's Takeshi Yokoyama. Ladies team member Emma-Jayne Wilson (Canada), was also on hand.

Lemaire, a five-time champion jockey in Japan, said, “I think it has been 10 years since I last had a ride at Ascot. I have had a month off and there is no better place to get back in the saddle than here. Every time you race here, there is an excitement because you know it is an important occasion–you are competing against the best horses and the best jockeys in front of a great atmosphere.

“I am really looking forward to the Shergar Cup. We have a strong team made up of experience, with myself and Kerrin, and then the two young guns in Jason and Takeshi. I think it will be a nice combination as we try to win the title, and Kerrin's experience will be very important. He is a top-class jockey and has enjoyed a lot of success in England.”

Formerly Godolphin's number two rider back in the early 2000s, McEvoy is competing in his third Shergar Cup, and said, “It is exciting to be back. I haven't ridden here since 2019, when I did a little stint while William [Buick] was injured. This is a great part of the world to visit, let alone ride horses.”

New Zealander Jason Collett is competing in his first Shergar Cup, and was also experience Ascot Racecourse for the first time. The 31-year-old said, “This is my first time at Ascot and, I have to say, it is something else with the grandstand and everything. This place obviously has a bit of history, so it is pretty awesome to be here.”

Takeshi Yokoyama, who comes from a family of Group 1-winning jockeys, earned five Group 1 victories last year headed by Japanese Classic success on Efforia (Jpn) (Epiphaneia {Jpn}) and Titleholder (Jpn) (Duramente {Jpn}).

Yokoyama said via translator, “This is my first time at Ascot and my first time in the UK. I am really excited to be here and am appreciative of the invitation. Riding in the Shergar Cup will be a new experience for me. It is a big honour to represent Japan and hopefully I can learn a lot.”

Wilson, the most successful female jockey of all time in Canada, said, “I was supposed to come back for the Shergar Cup in 2020 but obviously the pandemic shut everything down. I think it must be five years since I last rode here, so it feels great to be back.

“I love this event and the novelty of it all. The international element is amazing and it is something you don't find unless you are in a competition like this. The team aspect creates a special camaraderie.”

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