Racing

It wasn't one of his better runs

Frenchman Beuzelin accepts the blame as the buck stops with him

If jockey Louis-Philippe Beuzelin had a time machine, he would set it back to 5.30pm on Sunday, Aug 16.

The event would be the $1 million Kranji Mile and he would have his space-age machine re-run that 1,600m race.

This time, with a difference.

And why not? Since that sunny afternoon at Kranji, he has watched the replay of that race countless times.

And he still grimaces every time he sees his mount, Countofmontecristo, rolling forward and trying - to no avail - to find cover in that 16-horse field.

Then, he would grind his teeth as the scene shifts and his mount presses forward four wide to hit the front on straightening, only to be left exposed to the swoopers.

Yes, Beuzelin is disappointed with his ride in the Kranji Mile.

Installed the $11 favourite, he would eventually finish a smack-up third behind the winner Aramaayo and Top Knight.

It wasn't the plan. And Beuzelin isn't one to run away from scrutiny when things go wrong.

The Frenchman who has been riding the crest of a wave recently - especially when legged up on trainer Michael Clements' horses - readily admitted it wasn't one of his better rides.

And while the result - good or bad - was a team effort, he admitted that at the end of the day, the blame must fall on his shoulders.

"I'm the jockey and the buck stops at me, he said.

"I rode him like he was the best horse in the field, and it would have taken a very good horse to beat him on the day.

"Maybe I was too confident for my own good when we found ourselves in front at the 350m, but that was also when Countofmontecristo thought it was 'job done'.

"Aramaayo poked his head in front, and took half-a-length on us."

For all intent and purpose, it was game over for Beuzelin and the team.

He added: "If only we had run him like we did in the Chairman's Trophy - just flop out of the gates and let him find his own strides at the back, we could have won the race. But it's over now."

Not having had the benefit of hindsight in the Kranji Mile still cuts deep.

"It's disappointing to have lost the race above all else, as The Count was in the best form of his life," he said. "I feel sorry for the connections, for Michael and Mr Joe Giovanni (Singh). I adore this horse, and I haven't slept well since Sunday."

HORSE RACING