Frankie set for one last Arc bow

22 September 2023

Frankie Dettori set to ride his last Arc de Triomphe on Sunday 1st October

Of all the superlatives the English language has to offer, Frankie Dettori has been called each one, not to mention the plethora of other adjectives that Italian can furnish. This is, in part, because he holds the record for most Prix de l’Arc de Triomphes won, a feat which is unlikely to be bested any time soon.

Lanfranco, as he was christened, son of another master in the saddle, Gianfranco, will hang up his boots for good at the end of the year. After 35 seasons, he has won on every continent, and has racked up no fewer than 287 Gr.1s, including 23 classics in his adoptive home of England. 

Now 52, and as willing as ever to travel, he was unsuccessful during his quick sortie to Stockholm last weekend, but he has bigger fish to fry on 1st October. At Longchamp, a racecourse he knows only too well and site of his greatest French successes, his record six Arc victories surpasses the feats of all other jockeys in the history of the race. It took him just 33 starts to achieve that number, half while retained rider for Godolphin from 1994 to 2012 - Lammtarra (1994), Sakhee (2001), and Marienbard (2002) - and the other three in the space of just four years for loyal backer, John Gosden - Golden Horn (2015) and Enable (2017, 2018).

Five of the six jockeys counting a quartet of successes are no longer active (Jacques DoyasbèreFreddy HeadYves Saint-MartinPat EdderyThierry Jarnet) and Olivier Peslier is winding down these days. Whether Dettori will have reason to celebrate with his trademark flying dismount remains to be decided, but one thing is for sure, his absence in Paris on the first Sunday of October will be felt within the weighing room and without. 


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