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About Jim:

Jim Crowley began his flat racing career as an amateur before switching to National Hunt racing, where he landed approximately 300 winners. He then returned to the flat to ride for sister-in-law Amanda Perrett. After years of hard work, Jim was finally rewarded when we won the 2016 Stobart Flat Jockey Championship with an incredible 148 winners. That was followed by a lucrative retained partnership with leading owner Sheikh Hamdan al-Maktoum, for whom he is the no.1 jockey. Now, the reigning Champion Jockey gives you an exclusive insight into all of his big rides for the 2017 season, courtesy of Coral.

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Crowley Calls It: “This was the standout horse of the week for me”

The Champion Jockey previews his rides on day four of Glorious Goodwood

It was amazing to have won the Group One Sussex Stakes on board Here Comes When. He was fourth in the race two years ago and he’s been a good horse but there is no doubt in my mind that if it was Good to Firm ground he would not be able to live with them.

He’s a soft ground specialist and on the day he had what it takes. He was always going so well and was in the perfect position, following the favourite, and I was able to slipstream him. I was able to squeeze him off the fence three furlongs out and I was always comfortable. I always felt that he was going to win.

Ribchester came off the bridle quite early and I had to switch around him at the two pole. I had been hoping he would take me a bit further because my horse can pull up a bit when he hits the front. But in truth it worked out perfectly. I was trying to hold on to my horse as long as I could because I really didn’t want to be in front too soon. It just worked out really well. Jim and Fitri Hay put a lot into the game so they deserve it, and it’s great to have a big winner at my local track.

This is what the game is all about. The Sussex Stakes is the second Group One I’ve won this season after winning the Coral-Eclipse last month and hopefully people will see that, and I’ll be offered even more opportunities in the big races.

Having ridden the big race winner, the pressure is off as far as the Festival is concerned. I’d really like to ride a winner for the boss, Sheikh Hamdan. I’d love to win on Battaash for him.

2.25 Goodwood – Zainhom

I really like this horse. I think he will enjoy any cut in the ground. He was third in the Greenham and then went to Sandown where he also finished third. It was good to firm again that day. I think he’ll be better with a bit of cut in the ground. In fact I think he will run a nice race in this. The Greenham form looks good and he has been going really well at home. I’d be hopeful of a good run.

I know Beat The Bank as I won on him at Newmarket. He won on Good To Firm and is a good horse, but he might just prefer better ground. I’ve also won on Make Time who is in with a chance and won’t mind this ground. It is a tight little race.

3.00 Goodwood – Mustashry

He’s been off the track for 324 days but he has been going really well at home. He’s a lovely horse. I have not ridden him before so I am not 100% sure about the ground. He has been drawn reasonably low in stall 8. It is a big ask to win after so long off the track, and into a competitive handicap, but if he is as good as what we think he could be, then he could overcome that absence. Sir Michael Stoute would not being running him if he was not fit and ready to put up a good show.

I have won on the top horse Zhui Feng around here over 1m2f. He will do his usual and go forward from the off but he won’t get such an uncontested lead like he did in the Royal Hunt Cup.

3.35 Goodwood – Battaash

This was the standout horse of the week for me. I am not so sure about the ground now though whereas other horses, like Priceless will relish the soft ground. My horse is very fast and my only concern is if the ground takes the speed away from him. He’ll either win or he won’t, it’s as simple as that. I would have preferred better ground. If he goes and wins on the ground then it opens up more avenues for him later in the year, like Prix de l’Abbaye at Chantilly. I am drawn in stall one which is on the far side, but it won’t be a problem as we have Take Cover in 3 who is a front runner. Battaash doesn’t have to lead so I don’t think 1 is a bad draw.

4.40 Goodwood – Sainted

She’s got a good chance in this race. She is drawn 15 which is quite wide and isn’t ideal over 7f here, but she has form on soft ground. She looks a progressive filly. She is very lightly raced, having had just the four starts. If you look at her form, she has won on soft and heavy ground. I think she has a good chance. I’d have liked a lower draw on her but it is what it is.

5.15 Goodwood – Reshoun

This horse is owned by a good friend of mine, Michael Watt. He has always been a big supporter of mine. I rode a lot for him when I was a Jump jockey, so it is great to have a ride for him. Reshoun has come from France so I don’t know a lot about him. His trainer, Ian Williams is doing well. He does well with these horses. He has a bit of form with cut in the ground. He looks to have an interesting profile and could be anything, but I don’t know what to make of him as I have never ridden him before.

Jim