“He's the best I've ever had and the best I've ever seen. I'd be very surprised if there's ever been better.”
Sir Henry Cecil
Frankel provided the best possible tribute to the legendary American trainer after whom he is named by remaining unbeaten in 14 starts over 7 furlongs to a mile and a quarter (1400 to 2000 metres), including 10 jaw-dropping Group 1 victories. He earned Classic glory in the 2000 Guineas and became the first horse in over 60 years to be crowned Champion at age two, three and four. His phenomenal ability to maintain a blistering speed over up to 10 furlongs resulted in an average winning margin in excess of 5 lengths. The sight of the imposing bay cruising effortlessly clear of the most battle-hardened rivals will remain in the memories of racing fans around the world for decades.
“Frankel was invincible, unbeaten in fourteen races before most of which the speculation was not about whether he was going to win, but by how far, and how impressively he was going to do so.”
Frankel’s unbeaten winning sequence of 14 races was the longest seen in Europe since the legendary Ribot, who was born in 1952. It comprised 10 Group 1 races, from 7 to 10 furlongs (1400 to 2000 metres) at age two, three and four. In his entire career, Frankel defeated 25 Group 1 winners. Here are just a few of his surreal performances.
Dewhurst Stakes (Gr.1)
Beating fellow Group 1-winning juveniles Dream Ahead and Roderic O'Connor in the Gr.1 Dewhurst Stakes.
2000 Guineas (Gr.1)
Making all en route to a 6 length romp in the Gr.1 2000 Guineas.
“Unfortunately connections ruled out dropping him back to 6f in the July Cup, even though there is surely no sprinter around that could live with him.”
Queen Anne Stakes (Gr.1)
Annihilating his rivals in the Gr.1 Queen Anne Stakes, ‘Royal Ascot’s greatest win ever’.
Juddmonte International (Gr.1)
First attempt at 2000 metres but same outcome in the Gr.1 Juddmonte International.
Frankel broke new ground through his 14-start unbeaten career. What he achieved was so hitherto unseen that official handicappers proceeded to a “historical recalibration” of their rankings, which started in 1977. Superstars Dancing Brave, Shergar and Alleged saw their ratings downgraded to be placed behind the “new benchmark of equine excellence”, as Frankel was referred to by the rankings committee. Here are just a few indicators of Frankel’s out‑of‑this‑world domination.
147Timeform ratingThe highest in Timeform's history.
14Frankel’s unbeaten winning sequenceThe longest seen in Europe since Ribot (born 1952).
25Group 1 winners were beaten by Frankel.
5,4Average winning margin in lengthsCumulative winning distance: 76¼ lengths.
Winning the 2000 Guineas
Frankel outpaced the Cambridge to Newmarket train during one of his workouts in March 2011.
In winning the Queen Anne Stakes Gr.1 over 1 mile, Frankel produced split fractions faster than any runner in the 5f King’s Stand Stakes Gr.1, run on the same card.
Frankel is the first horse in history to run to an official rating of 140 twice - in the 8f Queen Anne Stakes Gr.1 and the 10f Juddmonte International Gr.1.
Frankel is the first horse for more than 60 years to be a champion at two, three and four years of age.
Frankel’s first book of mares includes over 60 that have won a Group 1 race, produced a Group 1 winner, or both.
Timeform all-time highweights
Frankel, born 2008
Sea-Bird, born 1962
Brigadier Gerard, born 1968
Tudor Minstrel, born 1944
Abernant, born 1946
Ribot, born 1952
Windy City, born 1949
Mill Reef, born 1968
Dancing Brave, born 1983
Dubai Millennium, born 1996
Harbinger, born 2006
Sea The Stars, born 2006
Shergar, born 1978
Vaguely Noble, born 1965
Arc heroine Danedream visited Frankel in his first season
Frankel covered 133 mares in his first season at stud, standing at a £125,000 stud fee. 126 (95%) were scanned in foal. Among them were an incredible 25 Group 1 winners, headed by Arc heroine DANEDREAM, Classic winners DANCING RAIN, FINSCEAL BEO, ELUSIVE WAVE, NEBRASKA TORNADO, RAMRUMA and STACELITA, six-time Group 1 victrix MIDDAY and fellow winners at the highest level ALEXANDER GOLDRUN, AFRICAN ROSE, BALANCE, HEAT HAZE, LAHUDOOD, ZEE ZEE TOP, DAR RE MI, LIGHTENING PEARL, MI SUENO, RED BLOOM, ZAGORA, etc. Also covered by Frankel during his first breeding season were the dams of the Group 1 winners ARCANO, DUBAWI, EMULOUS, LOPE DE VEGA, MAKE BELIEVE, MIDDAY, PROMISING LEAD, PROVISO, SPECIAL DUTY, TIMEPIECE, TREASURE BEACH, WE ARE etc.
Total number of mares covered (including 24 Juddmonte mares)
Average age of mares covered
Number of winners
Number of Group & Stakes winners
Group 1 winners
Group & Stakes placed mares
Total number of black-type earners
Dams of Group & Stakes winners
Dams of Group 1 winners
Total number of black-type mares or producers
Frankel had 110 foals born in 2014, 58 colts and 52 fillies. Here are just a few of them, photographed in the summer of 2014.