Barely a year and a half after having ridden his first race, Paul Denis was far from imagining what would happen to him on Sunday October 18, 2020. The young driver in the service of Patrice Quinton who started with pony races will celebrate his 18 years old on the day of his first participation in the Grand-Steeple Chase in Paris. The Grail of the obstacle! “It’s incredible to ride the biggest race the day you come of age, especially since I have recently been a jockey,” laughs the person concerned. I thank my boss and the Papot family for trusting me so much. They could have put a more experienced jockey on their horse. I never thought I would be able to mount such a test. It’s a dream come true. “
A couple who grew up together
Holder of 6 victories in 2020, Paul Denis owes a lot to his favorite horse, D’Jango, which he will find again this Sunday: “We can say that we grew up together. I started riding him in the races to claim at the end of last year, then we climbed the ranks and he offered me my first victory at Auteuil this spring in the Prix du President de la République (Gr.III ). It’s great to have such a prize on your list. This horse allowed me to make myself known and ride with the great jockeys. He gives me everything. “
A meteoric rise that is perhaps not over: “He had a good comeback in the Prix Violin II on this track, especially since he was carrying 72 kilos. He finished well to take fifth place. He needed this exit. He is on the rise in the morning and appreciates the heavy terrain. In addition, the lengthening of the distance will work in his favor because he is “cold” and likes to come on the others. He’s never raced against such rivals, but it will be interesting to see in action. In my opinion, it has not yet shown its full potential. “
At 24 hours before the big meeting, impatience and questions are numerous: “I can’t wait to be on Sunday. Hope everything is going to be okay. It would be a wonderful birthday present to take a “lot”. “
If Paul Denis were to win the Grand Steeple-Chase de Paris this Sunday, he would approach the feat achieved on June 3, 1906 by René Sauval, winner of this legendary Group I at only 17 years old.
Article original de: www.leparisien.fr