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Johnston hopes De Sousa can make it pay

Updated: Sunday, 30 Oct 2011 11:29

Silvestre de Sousa will fly to Australia on Monday to ride in Tuesday's Melbourne Cup, before flying back to England to ride at Nottingam and Kempton on Wednesday
Silvestre de Sousa will fly to Australia on Monday to ride in Tuesday's Melbourne Cup, before flying back to England to ride at Nottingam and Kempton on Wednesday

Mark Johnston believes the financial reward of the Emirates Melbourne Cup is a more than adequate incentive to Silvestre de Sousa for missing one day of action in his quest for the jockeys' championship.

The Brazilian is four winners behind Paul Hanagan in the standings but makes a rapid visit to Australia to partner Fox Hunt on Tuesday.

De Sousa is suspended on Monday and intends to then fly through the night in order to ride at both Nottingham and Kempton on Wednesday.

"He's challenging for the title and didn't really want to come and ride the horse as he's only four behind now, but I pointed out to him that all his winners in Europe would not even add up to the value of this one race," said Johnston.

"I wanted him to ride the horse, as he's perfect for him. He can do light weights, but is as strong as an ox."

Johnston went on: "Silvestre was champion apprentice in Brazil and is a relatively new kid on the block.

"I noticed him last season when he rode 100 winners for mainly small trainers, often on horses at long odds.

"Joe Fanning was injured, and he started riding a few more for me. He's a very, very confident jockey and you wouldn't be afraid to take him anywhere."

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