Skip to main content
Part of complete coverage on

Jockey Dettori cleared to return after six-month cocaine ban

updated 5:08 PM EDT, Thu May 30, 2013
Frankie Dettori will be back in the saddle again after France Galop lifted his suspension for cocaine use.
Frankie Dettori will be back in the saddle again after France Galop lifted his suspension for cocaine use.
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Jockey Frankie Dettori cleared to return to competitive action
  • France Galop lift his suspension for cocaine use
  • Dettori gave a positive test at Longchamp last September
  • Will return to action at Epsom Derby meeting Friday

(CNN) -- Iconic jockey Frankie Dettori was cleared to return to racing by the governing body of the sport in France Thursday after serving a six-month ban for cocaine use.

The 42-year-old Italian tested positive for the drug at a meeting at Longchamp in Paris last September and he was subsequently suspended by France Galop.

The ban was also reciprocated by the British Horse Racing Authority (BHA).

Jockeys: the ultimate athletes
Lady jockeys compete in the Magnolia Cup

Dettori was due to make his comeback last week but was thwarted in his efforts after a test carried out by France Galop produced, according to the BHA, an "irregularity".

Dettori met with France Galop's medical committee Tuesday to discuss a "private matter", the resolution of which means the rider can now return to the saddle.

Read: Dettori given provisional suspension over failed drugs test

The decision to return his license means that Dettori is eligible to compete in Britain's most famous horse race, the Epsom Derby Saturday.

But his likely ride in the Classic, top trainer Aiden O'Brien's colt Magician, who won the Irish 2,000 Guineas, is a non-runner.

That will leave Dettori's only chance to be as a late substitute for another jockey, but he is set to ride in two races at the Epsom meeting Friday.

His first Classic ride is set to be in the French Derby at Chantilly Sunday where he has been slated to ride Andrew Oliver's First Cornerstone.

Read: Dettori wins Epsom Derby for first time

The world of racing was stunned last year when news of Dettori's misdemeanor became public and he vowed to "rebuild his reputation" in accepting his punishment.

He has acquired celebrity status in Britain where he is based -- becoming a household name after riding seven straight winners at the famous English racecourse Ascot in 1996.

Dettori has secured more than 500 Group-level victories in his career -- the majority for the Godolphin stable -- winning 14 British Classics with three wins in the Prix de l'Arc de Triomphe, Europe's most prestigious race.

But he will ride as a freelance in the 2013 season after announcing the end of his full-time role with Sheikh Mohammed's Goldolphin operation shortly before he was banned.

ADVERTISEMENT
Part of complete coverage on
updated 9:23 AM EDT, Mon September 1, 2014
The going is always soft and the only permanent building is a toilet block. It's the antithesis to the pomp of Royal Ascot ... welcome to Irish beach racing.
updated 7:07 AM EDT, Wed August 13, 2014
Each August, over a thousand tents and hundreds of horses converge on Little Big Horn River in Montana for the Crow Fair and Rodeo.
updated 5:57 AM EDT, Fri August 1, 2014
Show me the money! Hollywood star Tom Cruise was a big hit when he visited the Glorious Goodwood festival.
updated 8:41 AM EDT, Mon July 21, 2014
Little-known outside the tribes of the Rocky Mountains in the American northwest, Indian Relay is a "magical" horse-racing relay.
updated 9:25 AM EDT, Tue July 8, 2014
Now in his 50s, one of the world's most successful jockeys explains why he gave up acting to return to the sport that nearly crippled him.
Winning Post's Francesca Cumani is impressed by the all-round multitasking skills of Ireland's champion trainer Aidan O'Brien.
updated 4:53 AM EDT, Sat June 7, 2014
 An infrared camera was used to create this image.) A horse and exercise rider head to the main track for morning training at Belmont Park on June 4, 2014 in Elmont, New York.
More people have walked on the moon than have won the fabled Triple Crown of U.S. horse racing. California Chrome is seeking to square that score.
updated 7:37 AM EDT, Thu June 5, 2014
A long history of controversy made him the "enfant terrible" of horse racing, but veteran jockey Kieren Fallon is looking for redemption.
updated 7:31 AM EDT, Tue May 27, 2014
Joel Rosario on Animal Kingdom competes to win the $10 million Dubai World Cup, the world's richest race, at Meydan race track in Dubai on March 30, 2013. The 2011 Kentucky Derby winner (11/2), trained by American Graham Motion and ridden by Rosario, beat home English raider Red Cadeaux by two lengths while another English-trained runner Planteur was third.
With owners ranging from presidents to sheikhs and queens, horse racing is known as the "Sport of Kings" for good reason.
updated 9:20 AM EDT, Mon May 12, 2014
Buy for the right price and you could make millions. Get it wrong and it could be one of the most expensive mistakes you ever make.
updated 8:07 AM EDT, Mon May 5, 2014
Mine That Bird, the 2009 winner of the Kentucky Derby, is having his incredible story told on the silver screen.
updated 6:35 AM EDT, Fri April 4, 2014
Amateur jockey Sam Waley-Cohen is perhaps best known for helping to resurrect Prince William's relationship with Kate Middleton.
ADVERTISEMENT