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Image: David Cormack

Frankie Dettori had come in for some strong criticism following his ride on popular stayer Stradivarius in the Ascot Gold Cup but within 24 hours he’d transformed himself, as only Dettori can, into the hero of the hour by guiding favourite INSPIRAL to victory in the feature race on Friday’s card, the Coronation Stakes.

Settled in rear of midfield Dettori fans could be forgiven for having had their hearts in their mouths as he approached the home turn with only two runners behind him but he had a willing partner and the filly quickened readily under his urgings, Dettori steering her through the gaps which had been so elusive the day before. In the final furlong, once she had clear daylight in front of her, the John and Thady Gosden trained filly, making her three year old debut, bounded clear for a comfortable success.

15/8 favourite and with Dettori in the saddle the result proved popular with the large crowd who were revelling in the midsummer heat-haze which bathed the Berkshire track in glorious sunshine.

Visibly relieved after the race Dettori was in ebullient mood. “She’s got an engine and she got me out of trouble. It’s been a tough week, but we’re on the board now and can relax a bit.”

Trainer John Gosden, forced to miss the classics with the daughter of Frankel after some setbacks in her preparation earlier in the year, was looking forward. “She showed what she can do when she’s right. I think she could go a mile and a quarter quite comfortably.”

The filly, now unbeaten in five starts, was shortened to 4/7 fav from 4/1 for Newmarket’s Falmouth Stakes by bookmakers swiftbet who are showing all Royal Ascot races live on their app.

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