Frankel stretches winning record to 13 races in York


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The Independent Online

Frankel stretched his perfect record to 13 when treating his legion of supporters to another breathtaking performance in the Juddmonte International Stakes at York.

The world's best racehorse took the step up from a mile to 10 and a half furlongs in his stride as he justified highly-restrictive odds of 1-10 without being asked a serious question.

Leading two furlongs out in the hands of Tom Queally, the Sir Henry Cecil-trained colt pulled away to score with consummate ease to lift this Group One prize, sponsored by his owner Khalid Abdullah.

Queally said: "I suspected they'd go a good gallop, but we had our plan in place.

"It panned out nicely - he won ever so well.

"It's a fantastic training performance."

The running was made by Robin Hood and Windsor Palace, the two pacemakers for the Aidan O'Brien-trained St Nicholas Abbey.

They set out to try to find any chinks in the Frankel armour, but it was a lost cause.

Frankel, taking his career earnings to over £2million, was held up in seventh place in the early stages before making stealthy progress to stalk St Nicholas Abbey early in the straight.

He sauntered into the lead with the minimum of fuss and swept into a clear lead within a heartbeat.

Frankel's winning margin was seven lengths, but it could have been much further.

Farhh pipped St Nicholas Abbey by a nose in a hard-fought race for second place.

Frankel, who has been ridden in all of his races by Queally, is now just one short of 10 Group One victories.

His first success at the highest level came over seven furlongs in the Dewhurst Stakes at Newmarket in what was his fourth and final start as a two-year-old.

After winning the Group Three Greenham Stakes on his seasonal reappearance as a three-year-old, the son of Galileo swept all before him over a mile.

Successful in the 2000 Guineas, St James's Palace Stakes, Sussex Stakes and the Queen Elizabeth II Stakes in 2011, it looked for a short while that he might not run this year and be retired.

However, he overcame an injury scare in the spring - returning with victory in the Lockinge Stakes at Newbury in May - and has been better than ever this summer.

He more than doubled his five-length margin in the Lockinge when taking the Queen Anne Stakes at Royal Ascot by 11 lengths from old foe Excelebration.

Frankel then repeated last summer's win in the Sussex Stakes at Glorious Goodwood earlier in the month, before cementing his place in turf history with another scintillating display on the Knavesmire.

Queally added: "I gave them enough of a lead for the pace we were going and he won ever so well.

"He's certainly as good (over a mile and a quarter as a mile).

"Every man and his dog seemed to want to put their penny's worth in to say where he should run, but to run him in the owner's race and for him to make it 13 out of 13 speaks for itself.

"I'm delighted to be a part of it."