By Great British Racing
GB: After becoming the first rider to reach 50 winners for the season, William Buick is under no illusions of the task that lies ahead if he is to clinch his first champion jockey title this year.
The Godolphin jockey hit his half century at Lingfield on Monday [June 28], reaching the milestone from fewer rides than were needed in any of the three previous seasons.
However, the Newmarket-based jockey is determined to keep his focus with three and a half months of the Championship remaining and he reiterated his desire to win his first title.
“I’ve always said my ambition at the start of the season was to ride as many winners as possible,” Buick said. “Having come so close to winning the title last year, my focus is on the Jockeys’ Championship and to do so you need to ride winners at a fast rate.
“To be the first to 50 winners is obviously fantastic, but there is an awful long way to go. I’m a relatively experienced jockey now, so I know from previous years that this part of the season is when the really hard work starts. It’s a time to keep focus and to not drop the ball.”
Buick’s 50th winner was part of Lingfield treble which kept him ahead of his nearest rivals two-time champion Oisin Murphy and Tom Marquand in a title race that culminates on Saturday October 16 at QIPCO British Champions Day.
Charlie Appleby has also had a flying start to the season and sits top of the Trainers’ Championship, and Buick is grateful to be riding for the trainer who provided him with his second Irish Derby winner last Saturday at the Curragh with Hurricane Lane.
The 2008 champion apprentice said: “I’m in a very privileged position to be first jockey to Charlie (Appleby). He’s had a fantastic season so far and there’s plenty of racing still to go, but he’s already ticked off the Derby and the Irish Derby, which is a great feat.
“We work together as a team and he provides me with the ammunition that I need to compete. He’s probably in a position to start thinking about being Champion Trainer, but as I said before, there’s still an awful long way to go this year for both of us.”
Among Buick’s 50 victories so far this season are three wins at Royal Ascot, including on the David Menuisier-trained Wonderful Tonight in the Hardwicke Stakes. Buick also won the Yorkshire Cup on Spanish Mission, part of this year’s QIPCO British Champions Series, and the Dante Stakes at the same meeting with Hurricane Lane.
• See the full 2021 Flat Jockeys’ Championship table here