Italian-born, British-based jockey Lanfranco “Frankie” Dettori has defeated North America’s Victor Espinoza and England’s Ryan Moore for the title of 2015 Longines World’s Best Jockey.
It was a close competition for most of the year, but Dettori won five of the world’s Top 100 Group or Grade 1 races, and four of those — the Investec Derby, Coral-Eclipse, QIPCO Irish Champion Stakes, and Qatar Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe — came aboard Golden Horn, Europe’s Horse of the Year. His other top victory came in the Diamond Jubilee Stakes at Royal Ascot with Undrafted.
Scoring for the award credits jockeys for finishing in the top three, and Dettori’s mounts also finished second four times and third four times in qualifying races. Dettori had the most top three finishes of any jockey, and it was that remarkable consistency that helped him win the title with a total of 100 points.
Espinoza and Moore tied for second, finishing with 90 points, while France’s Maxime Guyon finished close behind in fourth with 88 points. Moore, who was injured for part of the year, won the inaugural Longines World’s Best Jockey Award in 2014.
Dettori will be recognised at a ceremony held during the gala dinner of the Longines Hong Kong International Races on December 11.
It was a banner year for the rider, who also notched Group 1 victories in the Prix de Diane Longines, Darley Prix Morny, and Juddmonte Middle Park Stakes.
The awarding of the Longines World’s Best Jockey is based upon performances in the 100 highest-rated Group 1 and Grade 1 races as established for the year by the Longines World’s Best Racehorse Rankings Committee. The scoring incorporates races from December 1 of the previous year until November 30 of the current year. Jockeys accrue 12 points for a win, 6 points for placing second, and 4 points for placing third.
This system and the presentation of the Longines World’s Best Jockey Award were both established in 2014. It marked the first time a jockey was quantitatively recognised as the best among his or her global peers.