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FrankelFrankel left Warren Place for the final time on Thursday   PICTURE: Trevor Jones  

Cecil pays tribute to 'brilliant' Frankel

SIR HENRY CECIL has paid a glowing tribute to Frankel after the wonder horse returned to his birthplace Banstead Manor Stud on Thursday, where he will start a new career as a stallion for Juddmonte Farms next year.

Bidding a fond farewell to the unbeaten star, who retires to stud as the winner of 14 races, Cecil said he was "pretty certain that there has never been a better or more talented" racehorse than Frankel and thanked the unbeaten star for the part he played in his training career.

The trainer said: "There is no doubt Frankel has been a brilliant racehorse. I am pretty certain that there has never been a better or more talented thoroughbred. He had the speed to be a champion sprinter and then, once he grew up and settled, he got a distance with a turn of foot that makes champions.

 "Today is a sad day in some ways for us as he has given us so much pleasure over the last three years. But I want to thank Frankel for so much - for being such a very special part of my training career. Thank you, Frankel."

Frankel received an inevitably warm welcome from the Juddmonte team, including general manager Philip Mitchell, who said: "In the foaling unit on February 11th 2008 at 11.40pm, little did we realise that we were witnessing the birth of a phenomenal racehorse.  

"The rest as they say is history and it is now extremely exciting that Frankel will be returning to the stallion unit at Banstead, some 500 yards from where he was born."  


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