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Frankie Dettori shines as Falcon Eight wins at Sandown

Falcon Eight beats Mekong at Sandown
Image: Falcon Eight beats Mekong at Sandown

Frankie Dettori showed his prowess in the saddle yet again as he got Falcon Eight home for Dermot Weld after a thrilling duel with Ryan Moore and Mekong in the Coral Marathon at Sandown.

Two of the best jockeys in the world served up a tremendous finish - and just as in the Eclipse on Enable against Magical, it was Dettori who came out on top.

But there was little in it, with Falcon Eight (10-11 favourite) crossing the line a head to the good in the Moyglare Stud colours.

Jackinbar had made it a decent test over the two miles, with Moore making his move before the straight on Mekong.

It looked like paying off, but the lightly-raced Falcon Eight just prevailed to complete a treble for Dettori, whose other winner on the day was Mojito.

Weld said: "That was a smashing finish between two great riders.

"My son Kris chose this race, as he thought it was very suitable. I thought he was a little bit immature for the Ascot Gold Cup. We thought long and hard, but we thought he needs to progress a lot more.

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"I think he is a very genuine colt, that stays very well. He got a great ride and seems to be on an upward curve. He is a winner over a mile-three and he quickened up well that day over that trip.

"That was only the fifth race of his life. I look forward to training him for the next couple of years, that's why I'm in no hurry this year. There is a big race in this horse.

"He has got a big future ahead of him, as he is just a work in progress. I think he will go all the way to a Group One in time. The Melbourne Cup would be under consideration, but whether this year comes too soon, we will see how he progresses in the autumn.

"The Irish St Leger is an obvious race. I love training these staying horses. People nowadays put all this emphasis on speed, but I love these stayers."

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