Monday 11 February 2019

Frankel to Sire Grand National Winner?

Frankel the wonder horse. 

The unbeaten winner of 14 races achieving total prize money of almost £3M. A star for the late horse trainer Sir Henry Cecil. Few racehorses have or will ever reach those dizzy heights. He is now a sire with a stallion fee of £175,000. 

Many of his offspring have been centre stage. The first winner being Cunco trained by John Gosden who run at Newbury 13th May 2016. The 7/2 shot won over 6f. A winner of two races in Europe, racing up to Group 1, later to race in the United States with Chad Brown. 

Perhaps, most notable of all Frankel's offspring is Cracksman trained by John Gosden in the familiar silks of A E Oppenheimer. He made his first start in that formative season. A five-time Group 1 winning thoroughbred who is now a sire with a fee of £25,000. 

But what about this Grand National talk, I hear you ask? 

Well, many of Frankel's offspring don't achieve the dizzy heights of Group-class success. In fact, many do not even win a race. It may come as a surprise to some that a number of his offspring have run over hurdles. Readers may remember Dan Skelton trained Solo Saxophone winning a hurdle race at Catterick on the 19th December 2017. Take a look at the video, below.     

So what's the likelihood of a horse sired by Frankel running over the Grand National course? In many respects, it looks very unlikely. However, who would have thought one of them would have raced at Cheltenham?  OK, so it wasn't at the Cheltenham Festival but you never can tell. The National is such a test of stamina that very few horses are actually bred to race over four miles. But that doesn't mean it isn't possible. Perhaps simply because someone likes to be the first. The wins of Cunco, Solo Saxophone and Cracksman all wrote themselves in the history of Frankel's story. Could we dare to imagine a Frankel would jump a fence, head to Aintree, and win the Grand National someday?

Only time will tell.