Dettori triumphs in Paris

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  • Godolphin celebrates its 94th Group 1 triumph at the Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe, where Frankie Detorri celebrates his third victory

    The Paris sun came out to greet the victory of Marienbard in the Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe at Longchamp and put a much-needed smile on the face of a sport reeling under a mass of appalling publicity concerning Sunday night’s BBC Panorama programme.

    Frankie Dettori leapt skyward from the back of Marienbard and the cosmopolitan crowd responded accordingly with another explosion of cheering, clapping and chanting. English, French, German, Japanese or Arab, they all love Frankie.

    Frankie, who had crafted a flawless piece of raceriding on one of the world’s biggest stages, returned aboard the much-improved Marienbard with both arms aloft.

    Immediately interviewed over the public tannoy, he saluted the euphoric racegoers and thanked them for his third Arc, following his victories on Lammtarra and Sakhee.

    The Italian spoke directly to the masses standing shoulder to shoulder on the steps above the unsaddling area. He made them feel a part of this magical moment – a perfect piece of PRfrom the most celebrated name in the sport.

    Marienbard came to Paris on the back of Group 1 wins in Dusseldorf and Baden-Baden and may not be in the same class as Lammtarra and Sakhee. But he has done nothing but improve this year and answered Dettori’s every call in defeating the Derby winners Sulamani and High Chaparral by threequarters of a length and half a length.

    Simon Crisford, Godolphin’s racing manager, said: “Marienbard has come to himself these last two months when he really started to get it all together. And I hope we will see him again this year in something like the Japan Cup.”

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