Shergar Cup teams revealed with six jockeys set to make debuts
Jockeys Cieren Fallon, David Egan and top French rider Mickaelle Michel are among six debutants set to compete in the Dubai Duty Free Shergar Cup meeting as Ascot confirmed teams for Saturday.
Fallon joins James Doyle and captain Adam Kirby for team Great Britain while David Egan, Tadhg O’Shea and Joe Fanning form the Irish challenge.
None of the participants from the Rest of the World team who won the previous competition in 2019 will compete, instead newbies; Danish-born Kevin Stott and Sean Levey, born in Swaziland, fly the flag with one name yet to be confirmed.
Hayley Turner is commonly associated with this meeting and has won the silver saddle, awarded to the leading individual, in the last two competitions. She captains a Ladies side containing Shergar Cup rookies Nicola Currie and Mickaelle Michel, with the latter to have her first rides in Britain.
Around 15,000 were in attendance to witness Adayar's King George victory at the track's first big meeting after restrictions were eased and a similar crowd is expected on Saturday.
A post-racing gig – featuring Sophie Ellis-Bextor, The Feeling's Richard Jones and Marvin Humes – could draw in more interest, according to Ascot's director of racing Nick Smith.
He said: "Like the King George we won’t be anywhere near what we usually have on these days, which we’re very comfortable with as our first big race meeting back will be Champions Day.
"It’s very difficult to tell what the exact number is going to be. We announced yesterday that Sophie Ellis-Bextor will be our headline act after racing, so we’ll see what happens between now and then, but like the King George it won’t be regular numbers we normally expect to see.
"At this particular time crowd sizes aren’t really our focus, we’re trying to just get back gradually to where we want to be."
Saturday's event will be the 19th Shergar Cup after the Covid-19 pandemic forced the fixture to be cancelled in 2020. The Rest of the World are the most successful team with seven victories.
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