Lanfranco "Frankie" Dettori
(born 15 December 1970 in Milan
) is an Italian horse racing jockey
. He is the son of Sardinian
jockey Gianfranco Dettori
, who was a prolific winner in Italy. Also known as real name Lanfranco Dettori
in non-English speaking countries.
Dettori's first experience with horses was at the age of twelve and his father bought him a Palomino
pony. This had some impact on him, as he rode the horse often. When he was 13 Dettori left school to become a stable boy and apprentice jockey. The following year he went to Great Britain where he apprenticed with trainer Luca Cumani
in 1985 and became a stable jockey soon after.
In 1990 Dettori became the first teenager since Lester Piggott
to ride 100 winners in one season. His first win came at the age of 16 in Turin in November 1986, while his first victory in Britain was the following June. Further success followed, with numerous winners in Group 1 races. On 28 September 1996 he achieved the feat of winning all seven races on a single day at Ascot Racecourse
In an interview with the BBC's Newsnight
, he admitted that he used to take diuretic
drugs to keep his weight down. Dettori said he had used a wide range of substances before the Jockey Club
banned them in June 1998 after a spate of positive drug tests revealed how prevalent their use was becoming: "I took Lasix, pee pills, diuretics, laxatives; all...