Champion jockey Frankie Dettori has said he fears his reputation may never recover after being suspended from racing for six months for failing a drugs test. He told the Daily Star: "I'm ashamed and embarrassed" over his "night of madness."
Frankie Dettori fears he may never repair the damage done to his reputation by a failed drugs test which has seen him handed a six-month ban.
The jockey told the Daily Star: "I'm ashamed and embarrassed. It was one night of madness with friends.
"I dropped my guard when I was at my weakest. I was in a dark place. I was very low, my job was going down the drain.
"When I woke up the next morning I regretted it but it was already too late. I will regret it for the rest of my life."
He added: "People will always remember it. Now when they look at me they won't think of the things I have done for racing in the past 20 years, they'll just think, 'He's the guy who got caught with drugs'."
Champion jockey Frankie Dettori's six-month ban will be counted from 20 November because he been prevented from racing since that date, French authorities said.
It means he could be back in the saddle as early as 19 May 2013.
The statement from the French racing authority, France Galop, said:
They [France Galop stewards] decided to take into account his temporary incapacity to ride in races in France due to medical reasons, as of November 20, 2012, pursuant to the statement made by the Medical Committee.
Frankie Dettori's lawyer said he was "determined to rebuild his reputation" after receiving a six-month worldwide racing ban after testing positive for a prohibited substance. His lawyer said the champion jockey took full responsibility for his actions, and was determined to return to the saddle:
Racing has been good to Frankie and he knows that his privileged position brings with it responsibility. For this reason he is determined to rebuild his reputation when he returns to the saddle.
He is clear, however, that the responsibility for his current situation lies squarely with him. From the start of France Galop's inquiry he has acknowledged to them he has made a mistake and that the fault was his.
Finally, he has asked me to thank everyone for the many messages of support he and his family have received.
Three-times British champion jockey Frankie Dettori has been suspended from riding for six months after being found guilty of taking a prohibited substance during a routine examination at Longchamp in September this year. His lawyer Christopher Stewart-Moore said he "fully accepts" the decision:
"I have spoken to Frankie since the announcement was made and he has told me he fully accepts 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 this is his greatest regret, he has let down his wife and children."