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Frankel looked awesome on the Rowley Mile today

5 May 2012

It was like the 2011 QIPCO 2000 Guineas all over again as Frankel eased clear in his gallop on the Rowley Mile before racing this afternoon. Now it's all systems go for the JLT Lockinge Stakes.

Frankel effortlessly pulls clear of Bullet Train and Jet Away – next stop Newbury for the JLT Lockinge Stakes on 19 May. Image courtesy of racingfotos.com.

Frankel, with Tom Queally in the saddle, eased clear of his stable companions Bullet Train and Jet Away when they galloped on Newmarket’s Rowley Mile before racing today.

The four-year-old looked in tremendous shape, his minor training setback last month already a distant memory as he returned to the scene of his brilliant QIPCO 2000 Guineas victory 12 months ago.

The world’s highest-rated racehorse looks all set for the JLT Lockinge Stakes over a mile at Newbury two weeks today when he could face the Aidan O’Brien-trained Excelebration and Richard Hannon’s Strong Suit, both top class milers in their own right.

His trainer, Sir Henry Cecil, said afterwards: “He really enjoyed himself and was very relaxed.

"Going down to the start he was switched off and after the work he had a little bit of a blow – you can’t be anything but pleased.

"He’s grown a bit, he’s stronger and he’s getting much more sensible. That was the worry, but now he is settling and maybe there will be more improvement to come.

"I think everything looks good for the Lockinge, before which he will need another two to three bits of work, but at the moment everything is fine.

"If the ground is soft (at Newbury) I don’t think that will worry him at all, and we know he gets a mile really well.”

As well as seeing Frankel, racegoers had the chance to get autographs from three Guineas-winning jockeys from the past, Willie Carson, Jason Weaver and Richard Hills.

Much of the chat was about Willie’s time on last year’s “I’m A Celebrity Get Me Out Of Here”, and many racegoers posed for photos with the trio.

Now the stage is set for a cracking afternoon of racing, with the QIPCO 2000 Guineas itself just an hour away.