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Frankie Dettori may have ridden his 500th Group winner last weekend but he had never managed to lift the Cesarewitch before his magical front-running effort aboard Never Can Tell at Newmarket.

As he hugged trainer Jamie Osborne at the end of the famous staying handicap over 3600 metres, the livewire Italian looked as happy as he would have been for any of the supposedly more prestigious events on Saturday afternoon.

And well he might, for Dettori had defied a dreaded draw in stall 36 and took matters into his own hands to race alone down the centre of the track.

The highly-consistent Never Can Tell (25-1) won at Chester last month and her 1-1/2 length defeat of Ermyn Lodge was a major moment in the career of Osborne as well as owner Dr Marwan Koukash.

“Twenty five years of trying and I’ve finally broken the hoodoo!” beamed Dettori.

“She’s a front runner but to cut the corner was an advantage.

“Full credit to Jamie, she’s really tried for me.”

Osborne said he had left tactics up to Dettori.

“With her style of running, it probably wasn’t as bad a draw as everyone thought,” he said.

“Frankie said to me ‘do me a favour, don’t give me any instructions’.

“She likes to bowl along in front so it was always going to be a pretty straightforward plan really.

“I just said go out and give me the ride of the season and he has.

“She’s not very pretty or very big, she just tries. It’s lovely to be part of today.”

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