Frankel wins QIPCO 2000 Guineas
Frankel wins QIPCO 2000 Guineas

Click above to watch Frankel winning the QIPCO 2000 Guineas (G1)

(Image : Sporting Life - Footage : Racing UK)

QIPCO 2000 GUINEAS (Grade 1)

30 April 2011

Some had cast similarities with the great Dubai Millennium (GB) prior to yesterday and Khalid Abdullah’s brilliant Frankel (GB) (Galileo {Ire}) lived up to all the hype and mass of expectation with a ruthless demonstration of galloping in the G1 Qipco 2000 Guineas at Newmarket.

Frankel had hinted at something special to come during a pioneering two-year-old campaign and in his warm-up run in the G3 Greenham Stakes at Newbury two weeks ago, but few expected this unprecedented show of superiority. In front from the outset, jockey Tom Queally let the 1-2 favorite - the shortest-priced since the beaten Apalachee in 1974 - use his impressive stride and he had buried all opposition before he reached the quarter pole. Only Dubawi Gold (GB) (Dubawi {Ire}) and Native Khan (Fr) (Azamour {Ire}) could emerge from the pack to chase after that in complete vain.

Bobby Frankel was a vital cog in the Juddmonte workings for a long time and it was always going to take an unusual specimen to be named after the hall-of- famer. From the first instance, the equine namesake showed that honor was not wasted on him and he went from a super-smooth introduction over a mile on the July Course here in August to display electric speed when following up in a seven-furlong conditions event at Doncaster September 10. Just 15 days later, he turned Ascot’s G2 Royal Lodge Stakes into a procession with a 10-length victory made even more extraordinary by a final-turn move which killed the contest. When his margin was only 2 1/4 lengths to Roderic O’Connor (Ire) (Galileo {Ire}) in the G1 Dewhurst Stakes in October, it was almost an anti-climax and probably cost him the outright Juvenile Champion title which he shared with Dream Ahead (Diktat {GB}).

After a perfect return in Newbury’s G3 Greenham Stakes a fortnight ago, Henry Cecil had stated at a press conference to launch the Champions’ Series this week that his colt could make his own running and that was the clearest indicator that his homework had hinted at something extraordinary to come. If his pacemaker Rerouted (Stormy Atlantic) ever actually led Frankel, it was for a matter of seconds as Tom Queally quickly established his intentions on the hot favourite which drew Frankie Dettori and Casamento (Ire) (Shamardal) into early action.

By the halfway mark, where his rider had a glance back, Godolphin’s G1 Racing Post Trophy winner was already beaten and those who had tried to stay relatively close were beginning to pay the price. His rider could not have heard anything coming inside the final quarter mile, but for safety, Frankel received some light slaps with the whip and maintained the momentum all the way to the finish.

“To win a Classic is special, and I’m glad that he did it like that, as the media were building him up to be something super-equine,” Queally added. “They were right. It would have been an anti-climax to win by a length. He loves galloping - they might have been expecting me to get cover, so I caught them on the hop. I know the horse and have a lot of confidence in him - it may have looked like I wasn’t hanging about, but he feels like he is doing it a lot steadier than he is. He showed a lot of speed today, and we learned that he is able to motor - in the last furlong he was just idling and it’s great to sit on something so great so early in my career.”

After greeting his third and most important Guineas winner, Henry Cecil added, “I think I might have actually got the plan wrong, as we had planned to kill them all with his gallop, but in the last furlong he was waiting for them,” said the conditioner, who was greeting his 25th British Classic winner and the widest-margin winner of the Guineas since Tudor Minstrel (GB) in 1947. “He had won his race and was wondering where everything else was, but we thought there was something left in the tank. Whether he’ll get a mile and a half is another matter.” Cecil continued, “It is a relief it’s gone right. He’s a very, very good horse and, while it’s difficult to compare with other generations and champions, he must be up there with them. I’ve got ideas, and we’ll sit and think and try and work it out, but he’s in the G2 Dante Stakes (at York May 12) and we’ll see how he comes out of this. We’ll leave all options open and if he’s very well, he could go there and I could easily bring him back to a mile afterwards for the G1 St James’ Palace Stakes (at Royal Ascot June 14), but I’ll discuss it with the Prince.”

Extract from Thoroughbred Daily News