Frankie Dettori isn’t done with horse racing just yet.
The 52-year-old Italian jockey was set to retire at the end of 2023 but has reversed his decision after enjoying a successful farewell season, during which he had winners in the 2000 Guineas and the Gold Cup at Ascot.
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He said those successes “tickled his emotions” and now he is moving to California with his wife, Catherine, to ride at Santa Anita for the rest of the year – and maybe longer.
“How long I continue race riding overseas and where my American journey takes me, no one can predict,” Dettori said Thursday, “but I welcome the challenge in this new chapter.”
He said his final rides in Britain will be at the British Champions Day at Ascot next week.
Frankie Dettori isn’t quite done with racing. Credit: Getty Images
Dettori, who has been a jockey since 1987, became a global phenomenon at Ascot when he won all seven races in one day there in September 1996, after which he produced his storied flying dismount.
“It will still be sad for me on Saturday week – I will say goodbye to my fans and my beloved Ascot and a country that has been my life for 38 years,” Dettori said, “but I have something more to look forward to.
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“It could be three months or three years, I don’t know. It depends how well I do and depends on my body, I just felt I wasn’t ready to stop.”
Among his major successes, Dettori has won the English Derby twice, the 1000 and 2000 Guineas four times each, and the Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe in France six times.
He spent four months in the US around the turn of last year, finishing second in the jockey standings.
He plans to race in the Breeders’ Cup and also at the Melbourne Cup.
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