December 13 2013 Latest news:
by Matthew Stott
Thursday, November 22, 2012
FRANKEL, the world’s greatest racehorse, could make Suffolk the centre of the racing universe as he prepares for his first season as a stallion.
The unbeaten champion, born and trained in Newmarket by Sir Henry Cecil, was retired last month after accumulating almost £3 million in earnings from 14 victories.
He has now taken up residence at Banstead Manor Stud, owner Prince Khalid Abdullah’s premises in Cheveley, just two miles from Cecil’s Warren Place where the four-year-old spent his racing career.
Frankel, whose stud fee has been set at £125,000, will be visited by a star-studded book of mares from February 14 – St Valentine’s Day – to June next year, with industry experts valuing him at £100 million, the most valuable unproven commodity in breeding ever.
Philip Mitchell, general manager at Banstead, said: “Suddenly Cheveley is the centre of the universe!
“I’ve never been involved in a stallion that has such a worldwide appeal. The interest in Frankel from breeders has been phenomenal.
“As well as Europe, enquiries have come from as far afield as America, Japan and Australia.
“The world wants to know all about Frankel and send their mares to Frankel. It is a huge thrill to have him at Banstead.”
Frankel, in relaxed mood as he was paraded on his own at the stud, could remain in breeding for the next 20 years, covering 130 mares each season.
“It will be completely new to him,” said Simon Mockridge, stud manager. “It’s a very different life, but I’m sure he will enjoy himself.
“He will be gradually introduced to trial mares in January just so he knows what the job is about and in February he will be thrown into a very hectic schedule.
“It’s unknown territory for us all. You’re never really sure whether you’ve got the chicken that lays the golden egg. In training they are dissuaded from taking an interest in fillies.
“But it’s no different from us. You meet a nice girl and hopefully nature takes its course.”
Mating plans are now being finalised, with possible suitors including unbeaten Australian mare Black Caviar.
Philip Mitchell added: “I would be very disappointed if he doesn’t become a very successful stallion. He’s got all the ingredients. We expect great things.”