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I've written a text with the sentence

He was very proud of driving such a beast as the Flying Scotsman

Someon has suggested I change it to

He was very proud of driving a beast such as the Flying Scotsman

Are both sentences correct and do they have different meaning?

My gut-feeling is that the first version indicates that the Flying Scotsman is a beast and that he is proud of driving it, whereas the second indicates that he is proud of driving beasts and that the Flying Scotsman is one. Does this nuance exist?

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I can't give you specific examples from vetted sources, but I agree that the nuance exists and that you're describing it correctly. 'A beast such as' implies that he drives beasts, and that the Flying Scotsman is a beast, but doesn't explicitly say he's ever driven the Flying Scotsman.

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