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Saturday, 15 December, 2018

Fran Berry on his travels again for star-studded jockeys' challenge

Fran Berry: had a two-month spell riding in Singapore nine years ago
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Fresh from partnering Thundering Blue to victory in Sweden on Sunday, Fran Berry has touched down in Singapore to join up with Hayley Turner and Robert Havlin for the inaugural Premier Gateway International Jockeys Challenge at Kranji.

The trio form Team UK and will compete against three international teams in four selected races at Tuesday night's meeting, with the winning team and jockey decided by a points system similar to Ascot's Shergar Cup.

Turner dons the captain's armband, with Team Asia led by four-time Singapore champion Joao Moreira, Team Australia by Hugh Bowman, the regular rider of wondermare Winx, and Team South Africa by champion jockey Lyle Hewitson.

Berry, who has been drafted in to replace the injured PJ McDonald, is no stranger to Singapore having spent a successful two-month spell there nine years ago with four winners from 30 rides at Kranji.

After a 13-hour flight from Stockholm via Helsinki, Berry said: "I'm delighted to be back in Singapore, it's been on my agenda to return for a while and it will be great to catch up with all the other jockeys.

"We're shooting in the dark a bit as you can only get feedback from trainers about how to ride the horses and watch the videos, but I'm looking forward to the competition."

The Irish jockey is still on a high after executing a textbook hold-up ride on Thundering Blue in the Group 3 Stockholm Cup International.

David Menuisier's stable star is now in line for a crack at the Canadian International at Woodbine on October 13, for which he earned quotes of 9-2.

"It was his first try at a mile and a half and he saw out the trip very well," said Berry. "The fact he got on a plane and travelled without any hiccups opens up his options going into the autumn.

"The race was great to win in its own right but it was also a beneficial experience for future targets, with the Canadian International on his agenda, all being well." 

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It's been on my agenda to return for a while and it will be great to catch up with all the other jockeys
E.W. Terms
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