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Frankie Dettori reveals what went through his mind seconds before deadly plane crash that almost killed him

Patrick Rowe

Published 
| Last updated 

Frankie Dettori reveals what went through his mind seconds before deadly plane crash that almost killed him

Champion jockey Frankie Dettori has opened up on the devastating moment his plane crashed while travelling between races.

Dettori, who was 29 at the time of the crash, boarded a plane with former jockey Ray Cochrane and pilot Patrick Mackey, as they looked to fly to Goodwood to take part at the event.

However, moments after take off, the aircraft burst into flames and crashed back to the ground.

The plane exploded following the impact with Dettori, who broke his ankle and damaged his hand, before being dragged out of the wreckage by Cochrane prior to an explosion. While the two jockeys were able to get clear of the plane before it burst into flames, emergency workers were sadly unable to reach Mackey.

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Speaking on Piers Morgan Uncensored, Dettori opened up on the crash.

"On takeoff, something went wrong. The plane went down and as the ground was approaching, I didn't have time to scream," he said.

"I was just disappointed that I was going to die. I was thinking to myself 'I'm 29-years-old, I had just had a six-months [old] child, why are you taking me now?', I was just disappointed. Why now?

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"I had so much to look forward to in life. That is how I felt. The wing of the plane clipped this bank, it was like being in a washing machine. I don't know what happened. I remember the impact and then the skin on my forehead went all the way back.

"Blood was pouring in front of my face and I was in a state of concussion, I guess. I could see the two engines on fire and I saw the pilot, head down, in front. But I couldn't move, I was paralysed. I knew I had to get out but I just could not move.

Frankie Dettori on Piers Morgan Uncensored
Frankie Dettori on Piers Morgan Uncensored

"Then Ray gave me a nudge, who was next to me, and woke me up. I realised then that I had broken my leg and when I went to get out, the plane was in bits and the door did not exist anymore.

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"Luckily for us the luggage door was just about half open, so I crawled out and then he crawled out. And then he [Ray] took his jacket off and he tried to go back for the pilot, but the plane exploded. I could hear him yelling with anger because he couldn't get the pilot out."

The crash was caused by one of the propellers on the plane hitting the ground during takeoff, with police claiming it was a 'miracle' that anyone was able to survive the incident.

Speaking on the lasting impact the incident has had on his life, he added: "It was a trauma for me, I lost my good friend, my pilot. I was lucky to be alive. It took me 17 years to get back on a plane. I was scarred."

Featured Image Credit: Piers Morgan Uncensored

Topics: Horse Racing

Patrick Rowe

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