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Frankie Dettori

Frankie Dettori: could be clear to resume race-riding by Friday evening

  PICTURE: Edward Whitaker (  

Dettori could be cleared to ride by Friday evening

FRANKIE DETTORI'S drawn-out saga to return to the saddle could finally reach a conclusion by Friday evening, with the jockey's French agent Herve Naggar expecting France Galop to give him clearance to resume race-riding less than 24 hours before the Investec Derby.

Dettori was due to return last week having served a six-month ban for a positive test for cocaine at Longchamp last September. However, with irregularities having surrounded a recent drugs test, France Galop have yet to relicense the former Godolphin stable jockey, with the BHA reciprocating the French racing authority's decision.

But the end may now be in sight once the results of the rest of a batch of tests return this week.

Naggar said on Tuesday evening: "Christopher Stewart-Moore, Frankie and I met with the medical commission at France Galop today.

"Frankie undertook five tests last week. The first two came back negative and France Galop have accepted Frankie's explanation for the previous discrepancy.

"They have said they expect to be able to clear him to ride in France by Friday evening, but there is a chance the results will all be back on Thursday.

"Whether it is Thursday or Friday, this is really positive news for Frankie."

Whether this will derail Dettori's hopes of riding at Epsom on Saturday remains to be seen.

Declarations for the Investec-backed Classic, in which Dettori is understood to be in line to ride one of Aidan O'Brien's runners, are made at 10am on Thursday. The BHA would need to give special clearance for any Derby riding arrangement to be made after the Thursday deadline.

Earlier on Tuesday, the BHA press office tweeted: "BHA has contacted France Galop today. We have been informed that they are not in a position to provide any further information at present.

"France Galop have stressed that they will make a communication regarding Frankie Dettori as soon as they are in a position to do so."

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