|Will Frankel Make It 14 Out Of 14 On Saturday?|
At £100 million, Frankel is most valuable stallion prospect ever reports The Telegraph.
Khalid Abdulla knows full well that he has an extremely valuable property on his hands – industry experts value Frankel at £100 million for stud purposes – but he is eager that his horse gets the chance to prove himself a champion in the breeding sheds as well as on the racecourse.
When this equine phenomenon retires after running his 14th race in Saturday’s Qipco Champion Stakes at Ascot, he will take up residence at his owner’s Banstead Manor Stud, at Cheveley, just two miles from Warren Place in Newmarket, where he has spent his racing career.
Contrary to widespread belief, Prince Khalid plans to make Frankel available to mares owned outside his own Juddmonte Farms operation, which offers the great horse every chance of becoming another successful stallion who is a son of Coolmore super sire Galileo.
No stud fee will be set until after Saturday, but it not unreasonable to expect the figure to stretch to a six figures. With up to 200 mares served each year, and based the income generated over his first four years as a sire, Frankel is worth around £100m, which makes him the most valuable unproven commodity in breeding ever.
So, if one the new wave of fabulously wealthy owners seen at Tattersalls Sales in Newmarket last week were to step forward with their chequebook, could Frankel be bought? “I doubt it,” Lord Grimthorpe, racing manager to Prince Khalid, said with a nervous chuckle. “He’s not for sale, as far as I know,” he quickly added.
With the focus having been on the build-up to Frankel’s last race, very little has been revealed about the life he can look forward to as a stallion.
When he returns home on Saturday, it will be the responsibility of trainer Sir Henry Cecil and his staff to encourage the colt to wind down gradually over a period weeks.
Switching from a racing regime, during which he has been finely-tuned to consistently excel at the highest level, to a relatively more leisurely environment, albeit with the demands of his new job, is never easy. Though he could well take to it naturally, he will need to quickly learn the drill as a new stallion next spring.
“The aim is to make him a successful stallion, but there are many unknowns,” Lord Grimthorpe said. “We would like to make him available to other breeders because it helps you to know more about what’s going to fit and suit. It’s trial and error, and the outside mares help give you the width. You really don’t know what [bloodlines] will work until you give it a try. If you restrict the [type of] mares available, it doesn’t help.”
As far as setting a fee is concerned, Lord Grimthorpe said it had yet to be finally discussed. “It is about getting the balance right, with a stallion who is unproven. There are many factors, nothing is guaranteed,” he said.
But what is assured is the interest in a horse being acclaimed as the greatest to have raced in Britain in four decades. It is difficult for a champion racehorse to actually sire one who is his equal, or even better.
What is encouraging with Frankel is that he comes from the most successful sire line of the past 50 years, one that seems to have been getting stronger and better with each generation. Frankel is a son of Galileo, who is a son of Sadler’s Wells, who, in turn, is a son of Northern Dancer, who was the bedrock on which Vincent O’Brien established Ballydoyle, as well as Coolmore.
It is interesting to note that Frankel came from a band of 10 young horses who had been the pooled result of an exchange programme between Juddmonte and Coolmore, under which each stud made use of the other’s stallion with selected mares.
The collection of young horses were then allocated. “That year, Juddmonte had first choice and I’m very pleased to say we selected the colt, who is Frankel,” said Lord Grimthorpe.
Frankel will be taking on turf giants such as Cirrus Des Aigles, Nathaniel, Ridasiyna, Pastorius, Declaration Of War, Master Of Hounds and Bullet Train.
Galileo, the sire of Igugu, is by Sadlers Wells. In KZN we have the Sadler’s Wells influence through that of King Of Kings(IRE) at Clifton Stud who was the leading national two year old sire earlier this year, his own son King’s Chapel(AUS) at Bush Hill Stud and Golden Sword(GB) by High Chapparal at Summerhill Stud. Frankel is out of the mare Kind by Danehill out of a Rainbow Quest mare.
Click on the image to view the advertisement for his last race to be run on Saturday.
Information courtesy www.telegraph.co.uk