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Dettori triumphs in Derby at last

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EPSOM, England -- Frankie Dettori won the Epsom Derby at his 15th attempt on Saturday, partnering 5-4 favorite Authorized to a sizzling five-length triumph.

Dettori came through on the outside with 300 meters to go and came home unchallenged from 6-1 shot Eagle Mountain, the mount of Johnny Murtagh and one of eight runners for Irish trainer Aidan O'Brien.

Third place in the 17-strong field, two and a half lengths away, was 9-1 chance Aqaleem, ridden by Richard Hills.

Authorized's victory ended a long Derby wait for Dettori, 36, dating back to 1992. He had won big races all round the world without ever collecting the Epsom classic.

"There was a bit of emotion when I crossed the line," he said. He had been watched by father Gianfranco who never tasted success at Epsom and suffered the indignity of falling off one of his rides in the 'blue riband' event.

"I had to pinch myself to believe it had come true," said Dettori. "He is a tremendous horse with an amazing turn of foot."

Dettori admitted he could not believe that he had it in the bag when he hit the front.

"I have wanted it for so long and take a lot pleasure out of it, when I hit the front my heart stopped..

"I will always remember this day and I would like to thank my father because I owe everything to him," added Dettori, who was ribbed by his fellow riders throughout the week and received one text message late at night from one of them which read simply 'tick tock, tick tock'.

For Chapple-Hyam it was really a day of redemption after having hit the heights with Dr Devious and other classic winners he opted to leave for Hong Kong, which was a low point in his career and he decided on a low key return to Europe.

"This is better than last time," said Chapple-Hyam, who punched the air with both his fists on exiting the tent where he was watching the race.

In a haze

"The time I won in 1992 it was like I was in a haze.

"This horse has never let me down, no more so than today as I thought Frankie was a bit too far back at one point for my liking.

"I don't do drugs but I can imagine that this is what it feels like to be high."

Irish record breaking trainer Aidan O'Brien did not really fare very well with his eight runners - Eagle Mountain the best - with his stable favorite Archipenko faring worst of all, finishing stone last of the 17 runners.

That humiliation for rider Mick Kinane was somewhat softened as he bred the winner.


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