12/05/2012 1:18PM

Dettori banned six months


Former British champion jockey Frankie Dettori has been suspended six months by French racing authorities after failing a drug test at Longchamp Racecourse in Paris in September.

The suspension, announced on Wednesday, is retroactive to Nov. 20 and will run until May 19, 2013.

Dettori, 41, will miss the Dubai Racing Carnival in the United Arab Emirates, and the early-season classics in England – the 1000 and 2000 Guineas. He will be eligible to return in time to ride major events in June such as the English Derby and Royal Ascot meeting.

Dettori’s case was heard by France Galop, the French racing authority, on Nov. 20. Their decision will be recognized by racing authorities around the worldwide, forcing Dettori to the sidelines. Dettori was suspended for testing positive for a banned substance that was not revealed.

Dettori’s lawyer, Christopher Stewart-Moore, released a statement on the rider’s behalf on Wednesday. In part, the statement said, “I have spoken to Frankie since the announcement was made, and he has told me he fully accepts the France Galop’s decision.

“He also accepts that he has let down the sport he loves and all those associated with it, as well as the wider public. But most of all, and his greatest regret, he has let down his wife and children.”

The suspension comes at a time when Dettori is not allied with a major racing stable. His 18-year association with Sheikh Mohammed’s Godolphin Stable ended in October.