Jockeys tackle Rugby Challenge ahead of the 2019 World Cup

Rugby World Cup Challenge

Superstar Jockey Frankie Dettori was among a group of four jockeys to take part in a fun rugby-based challenge to mark the start of the 2019 Rugby World Cup in Japan this Friday 20th September.

Dettori, who has had a remarkable summer with 16 Group 1s, represented his native Italy and went up against Jason Watson (England), David Egan (Ireland) and David Probert (Wales) in the ‘At the Post Challenge’, which was organised by Great British Racing.

Donning their country’s jerseys, the jockeys, who are usually tasked with crossing the winning post first, attempted to throw rugby balls through an inflatable winning-post target. The jockey with the most passes through the target within 30 seconds would be declared the winner.

Egan and Probert, who both played rugby in their younger years, both managed to score an impressive ten balls through the target.

Dettori couldn’t take his form from the track into the rugby challenge, scoring a disappointing one ball in the 30 seconds.

Following his dismal display, Dettori had a message for the Italy rugby squad, who face Namibia in their opening match of the tournament on Sunday (6.15am KO, live on ITV1).

“Sorry lads (scoring one in the challenge), I’ll leave it up to you. I’m looking forward to the Rugby World Cup, I know Italy is a big outsider, but I’ll be watching. Come on the Italians!” Dettori said.

Jason Watson, the reigning Champion Apprentice, was the last jockey to take on the challenge. Despite having not played rugby since school, Watson stormed to 12 points to defeat Egan and Probert by a nose.

He said: “I’m pretty happy with that. My family is very into watching England play, so I’ll definitely be supporting!”

The 2019 Rugby World Cup takes place in Japan from Friday 20th September until Wednesday 2nd November and will be aired live and exclusively on ITV.


Sign up to Great British Racing for our email updates and you will receive a range of benefits, including exclusive offers, competitions and behind-the-scenes updates.