Frankie Dettori says Royal Ascot is the pinnacle of the racing calendar

Monday 17 June 2019 11:48, UK

3:58
Frankie Dettori explains why Ascot is such a special venue.

Frankie Dettori spoke to Jason Weaver ahead of the biggest flat-racing event in the calendar - next week's Royal Ascot festival, which will be live on Sky Sports Racing for the first time.

And for Dettori, nothing in the racing world comes close to Royal Ascot:

"It's the best track, the best horses. You know, it's 60,000 minimum every day. Globally (it's the best). Never mind the tradition, it's the quality of racing."

For the three-time champion jockey, another thing that sets Ascot aside from other meetings is the pomp of royal pageantry, "the Queen comes, you can't get any better than that."

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Dettori has ridden 60 winners at Royal Ascot and his whole season is built around next week's event, "We start the season thinking of Royal Ascot. The focus is trying to find horses for Ascot."

Such is the importance of the festival, that the competition starts way before the week of Royal Ascot, with jockeys fighting to secure the best rides ahead of the five-day festival.

"Everybody gets uptight about it, but quite rightly so, it's very important. We are thriving to find a horse to compete at Ascot," said Dettori.

No jockey has had more success at the Berkshire race course than Dettori
Image: No jockey has had more success at the Berkshire race course than Dettori

Dettori, who has won the Ascot Gold Cup six times, will be looking to yet again be the leading jockey at this year's Royal Ascot, but admits there will be competition from Ryan Moore.

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"I think with Ryan and Coolmore, you need a least five (wins). Last year I had four, I just missed out by one. Anything below that will be a bad week," he said.

You can watch all five days and every race from Royal Ascot live only on Sky Sports Racing from June 18-22.

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