Facteur Cheval is likely to head to Royal Ascot after his Dubai World Cup night heroics in Meydan.

Jerome Reynier’s five-year-old has been the most consistent of operators when campaigning predominantly over a mile, finishing no worse than third in six starts in top company last season and ending the campaign by chasing home Big Rock at Ascot on British Champions Day.

Upped in distance to nine furlongs for a red-hot renewal of the Dubai Turf, the French challenger finally got his moment in the spotlight, revelling around the turns of Meydan to prevail by a short head in the hands of Maxime Guyon.

Further international assignments could be on the horizon once a trip to Royal Ascot for the meeting-opening Queen Anne Stakes is out of the way, with connections keen to explore more opportunities to race around a bend.

“I think the conditions favoured him and he’s more of an American type of horse to tell the truth,” said Barry Irwin, CEO of Team Valor, who own the horse in partnership with Gary Barber.

“I think he wants to run on a round track and with a pace to run at.

“He can handle any kind of surface, but I think he prefers a sounder surface and most of those races in Europe he ran in when he was finishing second and third, they were too tactical – especially in France, where they go so slow – and he doesn’t have that instant burst of speed.

“I think now we have figured out what he enjoys doing, we’re going to figure out a programme around that.

“We will go to Ascot probably and run in the Queen Anne because it’s an exciting race and people would like to see it, but after that I think we will focus on international races on a round course.”

Facteur Cheval could also be seen plying his trade on dirt before the end of the year, having impressed in his trackwork on that particular surface out in the Middle East.

Although no concrete plans are made, that would bring some valuable prizes in America into the equation, including the season-ending Breeders’ Cup, which this year takes place at Del Mar in November.

“Another thing is, he trained great on the dirt over there in Meydan and I think we will try him on that also,” continued Irwin.

“I wouldn’t run him in the Breeders’ Cup Mile because that is two turns and at Del Mar it is too tight a turf course and he’s too big a horse to adapt to that.

“Santa Anita would be a little better but a mile and a quarter on dirt is something we will take a good look at. We haven’t planned anything yet after Ascot, but after that every option is open.”

Irwin also reserved special praise for the son of Ribchester’s handler, who he credits with formulating the successful Dubai Turf plan.

He added: “I’ve got to give all my credit to my trainer and he figured the whole thing out.

“He took a chance not prepping the horse beforehand and he knew what he had. For a young guy, he is quite the thinker and a very impressive individual.”

Adrian Murray is keen to give Arizona Blaze more match practice ahead of a planned appearance at Royal Ascot following his impressive debut at the Curragh earlier this month.

The County Westmeath trainer saddled subsequent Group One winner Bucanero Fuerte to claim the first two-year-old race of the Irish turf campaign last year and repeated the feat with this son of first-season sire Sergei Prokofiev.

While Arizona Blaze’s victory was achieved in testing conditions, Murray would not be afraid to run him on a quicker surface as he looks to continue his education ahead of the showpiece meeting in Berkshire in mid-June.

“We were thrilled with the run and he’s come out of the race great. He was doing his best work at the finish on very testing ground and he looks like a decent horse,” said the trainer.

“He’ll probably have one more run and then we’ll go to Royal Ascot, all being well. We’ve no plans yet as we want to give him a bit of time to get over that first run.

“It’s hard to say what sort of ground he wants, he handled that heavy ground very well, but you’d be looking forward to getting him on a bit of better ground.”

William Haggas has decided to keep the King and Queen’s Desert Hero closer to home for his first outing of 2024, with Royal Ascot once again on the agenda before a potential trip to Australia at the end of the year.

The chestnut sparked fabulous scenes last June, providing his owners with their first winner at the big meeting in the King George V Stakes.

He went on to win at Glorious Goodwood and finish third in the St Leger, after which Haggas was contemplating a Melbourne Cup tilt.

That was put on the backburner but the Newmarket handler was considering sending him out to Australia in the early months of the new year, given the success he has had with the likes of Addeybb and Dubai Honour Down Under.

However, those plans have now been shelved and Haggas told RadioTAB Australia: “We decided definitely that His Majesty’s horse will not be coming to Sydney in the autumn.

“We may well come down at the backend of the year in your (Australian) spring, but I just felt he needed a bit more time and they (his owners) concurred.

“Possibly (the Melbourne Cup) or possibly something in Sydney, we’ll see.

“We are going to concentrate on going to Royal Ascot for the Hardwicke Stakes, which will be his first major target.

“He’s done very well this winter. He will benefit from all the time he can get. It’s ‘do we press the button now or wait a bit’ and we plumped for the second option, we’re going to wait a bit.

“He’s pretty useful, he got better and better last year and we think he’s done better again this winter, so I am very pleased with him.”

Haggas will be represented in the big Australian races once again by Dubai Honour, who won both the Ranvet Stakes and the Queen Elizabeth Stakes last year before finishing a fine third to Romantic Warrior in the QEII Cup in Hong Kong.

“He’ll go into quarantine on February 15. We’re looking at the same two races as last year,” said Haggas.

“I probably shouldn’t have run him in the Eclipse, as he’d been on the go for a while, but there were only four runners and I thought he ran well for a long way in the Champion Stakes.

“To be honest, his whole summer was based around getting him in top shape to come to you (Australia) in February/March.

“He will be the same horse he was, I hope.

“I’d like him to come back for two years. If all goes well this year and he runs competitively, then basically it will be all the same again.”

Two more could travel with Dubai Honour, as Post Impressionist, winner of the Old Borough Cup, and Mujtaba, last seen finishing second in the Huxley Stakes in May, are both pencilled in.

“Post Impressionist will run in the Sydney Cup, he’s been bought by Lloyd Williams. He’s in really good shape,” said Haggas.

“Mujtaba might well go. I’m really pleased with his condition. He’ll either go Ranvet or Tancred and then hopefully Queen Elizabeth.

“He’s never won a Stakes race, in his only start last year he was second in a Group Two and then got colic.

“He’s a good age, he’s six but has only run nine times in his life.”

Ascot has announced an increase in prize-money for 2024 when the King’s Stand sprint will also be run as the King Charles III Stakes for the first time.

Prize-money for 2024 will be worth £17.5million, an increase of 3.9 per cent on 2023, with Royal Ascot accounting for £10million on its own.

The figure excludes the industry-owned Qipco British Champions Day fixture in October.

Group One races at Royal Ascot will be run for a minimum of £650,000 (up from £600,000) while no race will be worth less than £110,000 at the big meeting.

Royal Ascot 2023 benefitted from the first royal winner since the King’s succession to the throne through William Haggas’ Desert Hero.

Nick Smith, director of racing and public affairs at Ascot, said: “We are pleased to be delivering these prize-money increases in 2024 against a backdrop of uncertainty and an unprecedented number of negative headwinds for the industry. The financial impact on all facets of the industry is already being acutely felt.

“It is, however, crucial for Royal Ascot to maintain its position on the global stage at a time when participants at home and abroad have so many alternative lucrative options away from Britain.

“Whist the main increases have been made to the Royal meeting to enable us to get to £10million for the first time, we have made increases in other areas of the programme as well.

“These include increases to fit with the new Premier fixture structure, including at the Dubai Duty Free Shergar Cup, where there is a particular focus on maintaining full fields.

“Importantly, no race at Ascot will be run for less than in 2023 including at our core (non-Premier) fixtures. This is in spite of a reduction in central funding to this element of the programme, which has therefore required further increases in executive contribution.”

Frankie Dettori is as low as 1-10 with Coral to ride at Royal Ascot next year having announced he is to continue his career in America.

Following a 10-month farewell tour, Dettori has reversed his plan to hang up his saddle at the end of 2023 and extend his riding days.

Having rented out his house in Newmarket, Dettori and his wife, Catherine, will move to California, where he spent last winter riding with great success.

Given the Italian has a good relationship with American trainer Wesley Ward, who is usually well represented at Royal Ascot, the bookmakers think it is almost a foregone conclusion that he will be back riding in the UK in June.

Among a raft of other specials offered are 5-1 for Dettori to ride a US Triple Crown winner, 16-1 to ride the Kentucky Derby winner and 2-1 to ride an American-trained horse to victory at next year’s Royal Ascot.

“Now Frankie has confirmed his career will be extended into 2024, there must be every chance we see him back at his favourite track next summer, and with allies such as Wesley Ward in his corner, it’s not big odds that he extends his winning tally at the Royal meeting,” said Coral’s David Stevens.

Paddy Power make it only a 6-4 shot that Dettori rides at Royal Ascot 2025, while he is 2-1 to ride a British Group One winner next year with the same firm.

William Hill have taken a similar view in making him a 2-1 chance to ride a Royal Ascot winner next year and 16-1 for Kentucky Derby success.

The firm’s Lee Phelps said: “Frankie Dettori has taken a U-turn in his road to retirement after riding at the top of his game all season.

“His luck is likely to continue in America and the Middle East this winter, so we give him odds of 2-1 to be back at Royal Ascot next year riding a winner, despite his claims of retiring from UK racing.

“While he hasn’t ridden a winner of the Kentucky Derby yet, it’s not out of the question that he could do it in 2024, and we have him at 16-1 to ride next year’s winner.”

William Haggas says he is in no rush to make a plan for the King’s Royal Ascot winner Desert Hero.

A son of Sea The Stars, the three-year-old earned a third success in five career starts when recording a famous victory under Tom Marquand in the King George V Stakes.

The head victory over Valiant King gave the King and Queen their first success at the meeting.

The Newmarket handler feels he will not make a quick return to the track, however.

He said: “It was a great day. He’s fine, but I don’t know quite what we will do.

“He would have had a very hard race there, so we are not in any rush to make a plan.

“We will have to see how we go. There’s nothing in mind long-term, not really.”

Meanwhile, Tiber Flow, who won Newcastle’s Group Three Chipchase Stakes on Saturday, could prove difficult to place, according to the handler.

Marquand’s mount beat Spycatcher in the six-furlong all-weather contest by neck to make it four wins from five starts on artificial surfaces.

Haggas said: “It was nice for Jon and Julia Aisbitt, they bred him. His half-brother (Godwinson) won at Hamilton on Thursday to become their 100th winner, which is a fantastic achievement.

“Then the older brother wins a Group race at Newcastle, so it is fantastic.

“We wanted to run him in the Wokingham, but he needs cut in the ground.

“So, the Chipchase was a very nice option, too. I don’t know yet where we’ll go. He would be in the Hackwood (Newbury) with a penalty.

“There are penalties everywhere now. That’s a crime for winning a Group race, but we’ll see. He has won a Group race off a rating of 106, so life could be tough with his penalty.”

Frankie Dettori is still deemed to have ridden carelessly after his appeal against the nine-day ban imposed for his ride on Saga at Royal Ascot.

Dettori attempted to switch right-handed towards the rail in the early stages of the Wolferton Stakes and in doing so caused James McDonald to quickly snatch up Cadillac. Certain Lad and Notre Belle Bete, who were behind Cadillac, were also hampered in the scrimmaging.

Owned by the King and Queen and trained by John and Thady Gosden, Saga eventually finished fifth in the 10-furlong Listed event, which was won by Royal Champion.

An independent disciplinary panel of the British Horseracing Authority on Thursday considered evidence from all relevant parties, including Dettori, and elected to uphold the careless riding offence originally decided upon by stewards on the first day of Royal Ascot.

The panel then retired to deliberate over submissions from Dettori’s legal representative seeking a reduction in the penalty.

Deauville Legend could take on defending champion Pyledriver in the King George VI And Queen Elizabeth Stakes at Ascot, with trainer James Ferguson confident he will take “a huge step forward”.

Fourth in the Melbourne Cup on his previous run at Flemington, the lightly-raced four-year-old produced a fine run on his return from a 235-day break when beaten just under three lengths by Pyledriver in the Hardwicke Stakes at Royal Ascot.

A head runner-up in last year’s King George V Stakes, Deauville Legend went on to take two Group races and his Newmarket handler is happy to meet Pyledriver again in the all-aged Group One contest at the Berkshire track on July 29.

“That was huge after an extremely long lay-off,” said Ferguson.

“We knew it would be a tough ask and he just went for his girths half a furlong from home, and he will probably take a huge step forward from that.

“Deauville Legend will probably go to the King George. He’s had two solid runs at Ascot now and it is a track he obviously likes.”

Zoology almost made it a meeting to remember for the young trainer, the three-year-old stepping up on his fourth-placed effort in the Greenham to run Age Of Kings to a length in the Group Three Jersey Stakes on vastly different ground.

He stayed on nicely inside the final furlong to claim the runner-up spot under Oisin Murphy, and Ferguson feels he may be ready to go up in trip.

He said: “I’ve always been confident in the horse and I’m very grateful to have a Zoustar of his calibre.

“He has just done better with age and he’s developed mentally as well as physically. He looks a different horse to the one we had six months ago – he’s changed that quickly.

“I thought he ran really well and potentially he could step up to a mile.

“The Greenham at Newbury was on terrible ground. He is genuine. That’s Zoustars for you – they are genuine and very honest. But I can’t tell you where he will go next.”

Likewise, Canberra Legend, who was beaten three lengths by Waipiro in the Hampton Court, could also be upped in trip next time.

A son of Australia, he had previously disappointed in York’s Dante Stakes, finishing ninth of 11 to The Foxes.

Ferguson was happy to see him bounce back to something like his best at Ascot and has pencilled in the Group Three Gordon Stakes at Goodwood on August 3 for his next outing.

“Just put a line through the Dante,” he insisted. “We saw the real Canberra Legend this time and he will probably step up to a mile and a half. He will probably go to the Gordon.”

PJ McDonald was once again seen to good effect aboard Vetiver in the British Stallion Studs EBF Eternal Stakes at Carlisle.

The northern-based rider broke his Royal Ascot duck in last weekend’s Hardwicke Stakes aboard Pyledriver, having previously guided the top-class performer to win last year’s King George at the Berkshire circuit.

McDonald was back on more familiar territory in Cumbria and jumped on the Andrew Balding-trained 7-2 chance Vetiver in the £50,000 Listed feature, a filly whom he had already won on twice.

Carrying the colours of Cheveley Park Stud, the chestnut daughter of Twilight Son was fitted with a tongue-tie for the first time and after briefly being stuck behind horses, she powered home to get up and beat Dandy Alys by half a length.

McDonald said: “I’ve won on her a couple of times around Beverley, but this was a different ballgame today.

“As you can see she wears a hood and she’s a free-going filly. I got into a nice enough rhythm on her and I was keen not to play my cards too early on the ground because at the end of the day today was all about getting her into the first three and picking up some black type.

“I’ve ended up getting myself into a little bit of a pocket, but to be fair to her she showed some guts to come out of there and stick her head out and gallop out through the line.”

There were jubilant scenes in the winner’s enclosure after Two Brothers (6-1) landed one of the feature handicaps on the card, the Stablemate By Agma Cumberland Plate.

Mick and David Easterby’s inmate had been placed three times since his last triumph and was rewarded for his consistency with a neck verdict over Ravenscraig Castle under Billy Garritty.

“That was very good, we couldn’t have asked for any more,” said Oliver Thompson, who owns the winner along with his brother, Gavin.

“We were optimistic. We’ve had the horse since he was a two-year-old and he didn’t run until he was three. We’ve had a couple of ups and downs, but he’s absolutely awesome!

“This is our first horse. We’re actually related to Mick and he’s found us a good one.”

Clear Angel (7-2) lunged late to lift the Jason Watson 25 Years Carlisle Bell Consolation Handicap.

Making his first appearance since winning at Wetherby in late April, Susan Corbett’s charge benefited from a patient ride from Graham Lee, arriving on the scene late to score by a head from Strongbowe.

Corbett said: “This has been a while in the making as he was a very expensive yearling (€120,000). He kept having issues and we actually bought him online for 1,500 guineas.

“We obviously needed to do some work on him, he had a bone chip and various things. He definitely likes a cut in the ground and we’ve been praying for rain for so long. We’ve had him a few races and either the ground was against us and one day he had an allergy to the shampoo we used!

“It’s been a comedy of errors and the lads that own him have waited a while, but now they’re getting their just desserts which is good. He just seems to be getting better and better.”

The John Quinn-trained Due For Luck (9-1) made a successful start to his career in the Mark Nield Wealth Management Restricted Maiden Stakes, pulling two and a half lengths clear under Jason Hart.

Sean Quinn, assistant to his father, said: “He’s always gone alright at home. We trained the mother (Vanity’s Girl) and she went well at home, but never quite did it on the track.

“I saw him at the yearling sales and he’s a fine beast, as you can see there.

“He’s from a fast family I think he’s quite quick. Jason said he’s still a little bit green, so maybe we’ll just go for a novice with a penalty and teach him.”

Title-chasing Joe Fanning landed the concluding Carlisle Supporting Racing Staff Week Fillies’ Handicap on Charlie Johnston’s 7-1 shot Kitai.

Mick Appleby’s Big Evs is Goodwood-bound after a memorable victory at Royal Ascot.

The Blue Point colt had a second-placed debut run under his belt when he lined up at 20-1 in the Windsor Castle Stakes at Ascot last Wednesday, but under Jason Hart he was a decisive winner when defeating Aidan O’Brien’s 100-30 favourite Johannes Brahms by three lengths.

The Molecomb at Goodwood’s headline meeting is next on the agenda, a Group Three run over five furlongs, with a trip to the Knavesmire at York also pencilled in later in the season.

Appleby said: “I did quite fancy him because he worked well with Annaf (King’s Stand third) the Saturday before.”

“I was pretty confident he would finish in the first three but I didn’t think he would win like that. Obviously he is a very good horse.

“I had plenty of messages of congratulations afterwards which I was very appreciative of. It is what we do it for and Royal Ascot is where everyone wants to have winners.

“He is more than likely to now go for the Molecomb at Goodwood. I think that is the most obvious target for him and then we will go from there.”

At York the two-year-old could stick to five furlongs for the Nunthorpe, but there is also a chance he could step up a furlong and take on the Gimcrack Stakes instead.

Appleby said: “We’ve said we will possibly look at the Nunthorpe afterwards but Goodwood is next on the agenda. We did half think about going for the Gimcrack at York after Goodwood as well.

“Whether he will get six furlongs I don’t know, but it didn’t look like he was stopping at Ascot.

“At York I think he probably would get six furlongs, but we will get Goodwood done first then make a decision which route we take after that.

“The owner has had a few offers on the table for him but he is not interested in selling him which is good to see.”

Royal Ascot winner Waipiro will continue his career in Hong Kong, trainer Ed Walker has announced.

The three-year-old has made huge strides in four starts this term, winning a Newmarket novice in April before going on to finish second in the Lingfield Derby Trial and a respectable sixth in the Epsom Classic itself.

Dropped back to 10 furlongs for the Group Three Hampton Court Stakes last week, Waipiro posted his best performance to date when triumphing by a cosy two and a half lengths from Exoplanet.

A half-brother to Waikuku, a multiple Group One winner in Hong Kong, Waipiro will not run again for Walker and will be campaigned towards the Hong Kong Derby in March for owners the Siu family.

Walker told Racing TV: “The reason I have horses for the Siu family, and they are such great supporters, is for that reason, to produce horses for Hong Kong.

“He’s the perfect horse for the Hong Kong Derby. Mr Siu tries to buy one or two horses for the Hong Kong Derby every year and why would you not take Waipiro and try to buy another one.

“Every owner in Hong Kong wanting a European horse for the Derby would want Waipiro. He’s the perfect horse – loves fast ground, has a high cruising speed, huge talent, 10 furlongs, he’s the right horse for the job.”

Frankie Dettori’s hopes of winning the one particular race missing from his CV before he retires appear to be over after he was handed an eight-day whip ban for his ride on Inspiral at Royal Ascot.

The Darley July Cup, at his home course of Newmarket, is the one domestic Group One to have eluded the 52-year-old, who will retire at the end of 2023.

He was hoping to have a final crack at it aboard Ralph Beckett’s dual Group One winner Kinross, but was found by the British Horseracing Authority’s Whip Review Committee to have used his whip seven times in the Queen Anne Stakes on John and Thady Gosden’s filly when second to Triple Time.

That is one over the allotted number of six on the Flat, which triggers a four-day ban – and as the race is a Group One that penalty is doubled.

With Dettori already due to be serving a nine-day ban due to run from July 4-12 inclusive for causing interference on Saga in the Wolferton Stakes – which he is appealing – his whip ban would begin after that suspension has been served, ruling him out of the July Cup on July 15. His dates of suspension for his whip ban are July 13-15 and 17-21.

Connections of Shaquille are keen to let the dust settle on his popular success at Royal Ascot, with a decision on his July Cup participation to be made closer to the time.

The three-year-old recovered from a tardy start to provide trainer Julie Camacho and her husband and assistant Steve Brown with a first taste of Group One success in Friday’s Commonwealth Cup.

There did not appear to be any fluke about the Charm Spirit colt’s defeat of hot favourite Little Big Bear in Berkshire and Brown admits the success has left the team in North Yorkshire on cloud nine.

“We’re back to reality, but obviously everyone is still on a high and there’s a great feel to the yard, which is wonderful. We’re looking forward to the next chapter, hopefully,” he said.

“We’ll plan to have a proper party at some stage. We had brunch on Monday morning for the staff and thanked them for their efforts and made them understand how important they are in all of this.

“It’s a bit of a whirlwind, but it’s a lovely feeling and one we hope we can replicate again soon.”

Brown reports Shaquille to have taken his exertions well, although he will not return to work until later in the week.

He added: “He’s come back really well, he’s in good form. He’s incredibly straightforward, physically and mentally he’s a very strong horse.

“That’s the one thing I’ve said throughout – we’ve never seen this horse look tired. He came back and he’s enjoyed a few days turned out in his paddock for a couple of hours a day and he’ll probably start some cantering exercise towards the end of the week.

“We like our horses to have a good recovery after they’ve run and Wednesday is physio day so he’ll be checked over to make sure everything is A1 before we start again.”

Brown admits he thought Shaquille had blown his chances of Royal Ascot success after rearing up just as the stalls opened and feels the coolness of jockey Oisin Murphy played a huge part in his recovery.

He said: “Your natural reaction is ‘this isn’t going to work out’ when you see a horse concede that amount of ground, but Oisin was just perfect on him, wasn’t he?

“He showed a wise head, really didn’t rush him and the performance came from the fact that the jockey was eminently sensible and every move he made was the correct one. I think without that we wouldn’t have won the race, so great credit to Oisin.”

Shaquille will be campaigned exclusively at Group One level for the rest of the season, with Newmarket’s July Cup, the Prix Maurice de Gheest at Deauville in August, the Sprint Cup at Haydock in September and the Qipco British Champions Sprint back at Ascot in October all in the melting pot.

“The July Cup is the next thing on the map. It comes around quite quickly and it’s one of those situations where you’ll know where you are in 10 days time as you’ll learn how looks and how he feels in himself. You can make a more informed decision closer to the time,” Brown went on.

“He’s obviously in it and he’s a leading fancy for the race. There’s three more domestic Group Ones and it might not be the worst thing in the world if you just concentrated on them, but obviously you’ve got the French race in early August as well.

“With any horse you need to be flexible with your thoughts, but those are the four races I think we’ll be looking at and we’ll just try to get him in the best possible shape for wherever he goes.

“I don’t think we’ll be going further afield at this moment in time. He’s still a young horse who is still maturing physically and mentally. I think we need to be sensible and recognise that.”

With Shaquille now a Group One-winning colt, there is bound to be interest from prospective buyers, but Brown revealed no firm offers have been made at this stage.

Brown said: “There’s been two or three expressions of interest in him, but no more than that at this moment in time that I’m aware of.

“I think that’s natural now we’ve moved into that sort of field. At the moment we’re just concentrating on his next race.”

His close friend John Gosden put it best – Frankie Dettori has taken the blows and still come out on top.

The Newmarket trainer will be in his corner for the duration of the Italian’s long farewell season, as he has been throughout.

Bookmakers may have dodged a few body blows at Ascot, yet the lush green strip of Berkshire turf, the scene of his 1996 ‘Magnificent Seven’, has always been Dettori’s favourite area.

A Gold Cup and three further winners made it 81 career victories at Royal Ascot, the most prestigious of meetings.

Gosden knows exactly what the week meant to the 52-year-old.

He said: “It was a huge week for him. He was very, very keen to go out at the top, not to become suddenly this sad, unwanted figure.”

Epsom and Royal Ascot are the only Flat events that really matter to those with an idle interest in the sport. Victory in the Coronation Cup and the Oaks had given the Italian the spotlight he thrives upon.

Ascot Gold Cup glory aboard inexperienced partner Courage Mon Ami ticked the second box and will surely have been enough to secure him a BBC Sports Personality of the Year nomination at the very least.

Dettori’s career, the highs and lows, the ecstasy, showmanship and mood swings, is well documented.

What is not, is the important part he has played behind the scenes for Gosden and his son Thady, who will some day take over at Clarehaven.

“We have had a lot of fun together, from 1993-94 onwards, we’ve had a lot of fun,” said Gosden senior.

“When he arrived on my doorstep during the first year and he’d shaved his head, I thought he’d sent his cousin!

“Three years champion jockey, then the Godolphin job, then that ended. He was knocking around a bit.

“In 2008 he won a Breeders’ Cup Classic (with Raven’s Pass) for me – that is not easily forgotten, between the end of Godolphin and the beginning of our run.

“William (Buick) went to Godolphin and then we’ve had an absolute ball since then, from Golden Horn (winning the Derby) on through with Enable and all those fabulous horses.”

Gosden was there for him when things went sour at Godolphin, when he was handed a six-month suspension after a failed a drug test in France, when he was at his lowest.

“If you check the stats, he had a terrible year with 16 winners,” added the trainer, referring to his annus horribilis in 2013, after which he renewed his partnership. “He knows what it’s like to be shoved into the twilight zone.”

Every low point, the omnipresent Gosden was the father figure, sometimes stern, sometimes frustrated, always adoring, unwavering in the belief that Dettori’s ability could overcome any pitfalls.

They have had their ups and down, of course. Just 12 months ago, all was not well during a terrible Ascot, capped by Stradivarius’ defeat in the Gold Cup.

Arguably, he received a thinly-veiled kick up the backside from Gosden for his work ethic, though the trainer refutes that.

“After his lean spell, he just came to me and had nice horses to ride and we worked together as a team. He never ever needed that (kick up the backside). Every marriage has its ebbs and flows and last year was no different. It was quickly forgotten.”

The last two Royal meetings could arguably be a microcosm of Dettori’s career.

There is another six months of the final chapter to write, yet the Gold Cup – his ninth – could be the crowning moment, two days after picking up a nine-day careless riding ban aboard the King and Queen’s Saga in the Wolferton Stakes.

The story of this year’s renewal? To some, it will be this – has a Gold Cup winner ever been given a cooler or more stylish ride? Until a few strides before the final furlong, Dettori did not visibly move a muscle.

He kidded the free-going Courage Mon Ami round the final turn, saving ground, and while for a split second it looked as if the bird – Coltrane – had flown, the imperious Dettori waited, daringly switching left under two furlongs out.

Such was his ease of success in the end, it seemed as if the first time he took his hands off the reins was to thrust a right-hand skywards in a triumphant salute. That was not the case, of course. It took plenty of guile and muscle for the rider to redress the deficit.

If Gosden was surprised the four-year-old, with just three previous runs, had won, his emotions were the polar opposite for the ride, a gift honed on those oft-cold winter mornings on the gallops.

“You give him nice horses, have him come in the morning, discuss the horses, he is a fabulous judge as a work-rider. Not all jockeys are like that,” revealed Gosden.

“Great judge, Frankie. Gives you a very good idea of where you are going, where you are not going. He’s quick to feel that.

“It is one of his great assets is as a jockey in the morning. The afternoon is one thing, but the morning is fantastic. It is the intuition, feel and experience he has with horses. The feel, the instinctive feel – he has that.

“His father was champion jockey, his mother came from an amazing circus family, he was bred to be a phenomenal athlete. It’s great, it was just that time before he joined me again in 2015 when it wasn’t pleasant to witness.

“But now he’s through, we’ve had a wonderful run. We’ve had some great fun. He’s had a great Ascot and it’s great to go out and walk away carrying all the belts, not being on the bottom of the canvas.”

Frankie Dettori will arrive for his final day at Royal Ascot in the grandest possible fashion as part of the royal procession.

The 52-year-old has bounced back from a disappointing first day when he went winless and picked up a nine-day suspension – which he is appealing – to enjoy some spectacular successes, including the Gold Cup aboard Courage Mon Ami.

Dettori and his wife, Catherine, are in carriage four with Jamie Snowden and his wife, Lucy.

His book of rides on Saturday sees Covey as favourite for the Jersey Stakes, Free Wind a short price in the Hardwicke, Kinross fancied in the Queen Elizabeth II Jubilee Stakes and Knockbrex the market leader in the Golden Gates Handicap. He also rides Mums Tipple in the Wokingham.

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