The Irish Mail on Sunday
Dettori’s Glory as he reaches milestone
FRANKIE DETTORI rocketed to the 200th Group One success of his career as he guided Olympic Glory to an impressive triumph in the JLT Lockinge Stakes at Newbury.
Given a patient ride with Montiridge and Top Notch Tonto racing prominently in the mile showpiece, Dettori – winning the Lockinge for the fourth time – produced the Richard Hannontrained colt to perfection widest of the runners over a furlong out.
The response was immediate when 11-8 favourite was asked to quicken and he soon went clear.
Andrew Balding’s Tullius ran a fine race in second to finish two-and-aquarter lengths away, as did Verrazano who ran on well for third on his first start for Aidan O’Brien. Chopin was fourth for Germany.
Dettori said: ‘I was thinking there’d be no pace and it would be complicated, but it was just as easy as riding work.
‘He quickened like a true champion. His form is rock-solid and he goes on any ground.
‘He’s a great ride, has a great kick and is a jockey’s dream. I was on the best horse and I could go wherever I wanted. I’ll be surprised if he’s not champion miler again.’
Of his landmark 200th win at the top level, the Italian added: ‘I’ve been stuck on 199 for a while! It’s a great achievement.’
Winner of the Queen Elizabeth II Stakes at Ascot on Qipco British Champions Day, the Sheikh Joaan Al Thani-owned Olympic Glory had last been seen finishing ninth of 10 to American superstar Wise Dan in the Breeders’ Cup Mile.
Hannon said: ‘I felt some pressure today, after the disappointment of the Breeders’ Cup, but to see him travel and win like that is hugely encouraging.
‘He doesn’t need soft ground, but he goes on a softer surface as well which is very encouraging. Frankie must be delighted, he gets on very well with the horse.
‘He did it comfortably and we’ll look at Royal Ascot, the Sussex, the Jacques le Marois and we’ll pick and choose.’