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Angus McNae

Captain's Blog - Wednesday 24th October

I am grateful to Brain Downey for his comment on my blog yesterday, saying that I had not one word of praise for Frankel in my blog. Brian, after his last race at York I described him as the modern day Secretariat. This description not only appeared here on the blog but actually on screen, when I analyzed the best performances at York's Ebor meeting. I also described him as an exceptional champion.

As for Saturday, I was not prepared to comment on how good his performance was until I had actually worked out how fast he had run. Visual impressions are all well and good, but are by their very nature deceptive. I now have now compiled my speed figures for Ascot and Frankel has run another big figure to confirm my statement that he was a modern day Secretariat was indeed spot on.

I am not about to declare my undying love for Frankel, buy a poster and put it up on my bedroom wall above an altar with slow burning candles. Or for any horse for that matter. You could argue that all I have to do is look at the official BHA figures to assess Frankel's true worth. Feel free to work from those figures if you want, but I use speed figures. Should we all use the same methods of analysis and join hands around this great sport of ours and never disagree? You've only got to look at Timeform's figures compared to the BHA's to see that there is always difference in opinion.

Frankel looked brilliant, of course. To my eye he ran very fast, beating two horses who ran bang to form and they also ran very fast, so it must have been a great performance; quick light the candles and pray at the alter of the world's best horse!By comparing Frankel to Secretariat it is high praise indeed. That animal won the Belmont Stakes by 31 lengths, watch the race here - it really is up there with the greatest performances there has ever been.

Anyway below are the Champions Day figures I have compiled. As you can see Frankel ran to 136, which is an improvement on his 133 in the Juddmonte International Stakes at York. With as much objectivity as possible, I can say this was Frankel's best performance.

Ascot speed figures:

Rite of Passage 112
Maarek 89
Sapphire 111
Excelebration 109
Frankel 136
Jack Dexter 104

My selection today is So Beloved in the 3.05 at Newmarket. He ran a big figure when he won at Salisbury last time and the races working out well. The second has won easily recently at Nottingham.


Today's Selection

3.05 Newmarket - 3* So Beloved

* If I have a strong view about a selection I will always make that apparent and I scale the confidence I have in my selections. One is minimum faith and 10 is maximum bet stuff.



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