Antoine Griezmann set for UK horse racing debut as owner of rising star Hooking with the France World Cup winner targeting success in Good Friday meeting at Newcastle

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Antoine Griezmann is set to make his horse racing debut as an owner in England on Friday with Hooking giving the France international a first British runner.

The Atletico Madrid star is more known for scoring goals than watching winners in the final furlong but will have one eye on developments in Newcastle later this week.

Griezmann is a passionate supporter of horse racing and owns rising flat track star Hooking, with Friday’s meeting marking his first race outside of France as an owner.

Victory in the upcoming Good Friday meeting at Gosforth Park would secure Griezmann a further £100,000, while punters could cash-in on the outsider priced at 14/1.

Antoine Griezmann is set to make his horse racing debut as an owner in England on Friday

Antoine Griezmann is set to make his horse racing debut as an owner in England on Friday

Griezmann is a enthusiastic supporter of horse racing with Hooking being his first UK runner

Griezmann is a enthusiastic supporter of horse racing with Hooking being his first UK runner

The Middle Distance Handicap is also a first UK race for trainer Philippe Decouz who has praised the eight-year-old horse as being in ‘top form’ ahead of an opening outing on English soil.

Any chance of victory rests on Hooking beating Elegant Man who is owned by superagent Kia Joorabchian and the King Power-owned Sun Racing are also set to feature.

Decouz said: ‘Hooking is in top form. The race at Newcastle was a logical choice following his winter program.

Griezmann is currently starring at Atletico Madrid but will have one eye on developments in England on Friday

Griezmann is currently starring at Atletico Madrid but will have one eye on developments in England on Friday

‘He doesn’t go on heavy ground and so there is not a race for him in France at the moment. This race at Newcastle is a handicap and the timing is perfect.

‘His preparation has gone smoothly and he will be running on his preferred surface and distance. We are hoping there will be pace in the race.

‘This is a first runner in the UK for his owner Antoine and also for me. It is a great challenge.’ 

The race is set to get underway at 4.10pm with Hooking and his competitors tasked with navigating their way around a 1m 2f circuit. 

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