Young, determined and successful.
Jägersro licensed lad driver Marc Elias is a man for the future in Swedish racing.
But when it comes to World Cup, his heart still beats for his native Germany.
"It's fun to joke around with all my Swedish friends and it will be exciting when Germany plays Sweden on Saturday" says the 24 year old who before that will drive one of the stable's most promising horses in V86® at Jägersro on Wednesday.
Germany might be better than Sweden at football but when it comes to horse racing it's the opposite. That was the reason for Marc Elias' father, Conrad Lugauer to move to Sweden in 2004. It was successful and three years later, Marc and his mother Karin moved here from Germany. Marc Elias is following in his father's footsteps and to learn and develop he has worked for other trainers too, including Björn Goop but since last spring he is back working for his old man. And he's having a lot of success as a driver. 14 wins so far this year which makes for an impressive win percent of 22.
"I always say when Lugauer stable is doing well, so am I. The horses are the one doing the job and i think I've been better at taken the chances I've been given this year. But I would like my results to be better with other trainers' horses too" says Marc Elias.
His biggest win so far came with Toddler at the Elitlopp weekend.
"There is no bigger weekend in racing than Elitloppet and nothing beats winning there".
Prioritizes his driving career
Today Marc Elias' is on improving as a driver even though he's very much involved in the daily training and that's something he wants to continue doing.
"In ten year i would like to think I've taken over - maybe not the entire stable - but I hope t ohave taken over the driving duties of the stable and that I at that point have improved enough to have plenty of drives for other trainers too".
"My hope is to be involved in the training at the farm in the morning and then go to the races at night. But it's up to my parents what they decide, they run the farm. Maybe they think France is more attractive at that time".
Is that something you're talking about, moving to France?
"My dad is very fond of France and he likes racing our best horses there. His biggest dream is to have his own farm there but when he moved from Germany, that step was as far away as the moon. Sweden is no worse but France gives you more opportunities. My dad wants the best for our horses and in France there is more money and that gives the horses better opportunities".
You have talked about trying your luck in USA. Is that still in your plans?
"I still have an eye on USA but it's not going to happen now. If I'm going, I want to go work for Jimmy Takter but he said he's taking a time out in 2019. Right now we're doing really well too so if we can keep that going, I'd rather stay here. But if something happens where I think I need to develop as a horseman, I might go to USA for six months or a year".
Barbeque and football
World Cup in football is dominating the sport talks nowadays and of so too within the racing industry. As a German native there's a big game coming up this Saturday when 'Die Mannschaft' is facing Sweden.
"It doesn't matter to me if I'm Swedish or German but I think in German and if I have to do some quick math in my head I always count in German. So I'm still a little more German than Swedish and I am happier when Germany wins than when Sweden does. All my Swedish friends are rooting for Sweden and it's fun to joke around with them a little".
How will you watch the game on Saturday?
"My dad is a big football fan so I'm sure he will have everyone in the stable over for a barbeque. My dad likes to joke around with the Swedes in the stable too. It's always fun to joke around with Simon (Mitman), who loves sports and has played hockey himself. But it's at a level where everything is forgotten five minutes later".
"Should be right there"
Before the big game on Saturday, there is V86® at the home track Jägersro on Wednesday. It comes with a jackpot where a sole winner with all eight winners picked can take home SEK 10 million. In V86-4 Marc Elias will drive the talented four year old Spartak Face. He has won three of his five starts so far. He was on his way to win in his last start too, when he suddenly made a break in the last turn.
"I take care of that horse and i changed the overcheck a little because the bridle didn't sit that well on him and that didn't go so well. That's why he made that break and we can call it a human error. This time I'll make sure everything is how it's supposed to be" says Marc Elias and continues:
"Other than that the he horse has been great and he is in top form. Two starts ago he won in 1:12.1 and he trains very well. He drew a trailing position which isn't fun but I think if he's alright he should be right there".