Undoubtedly to the relief of Sir Henry Cecil, Newmarket’s resident superstar Frankel did not attract anywhere near the amount of scrutiny paid to visitor Black Caviar during his routine canter this morning.
Appearing on his home turf some two hours after Black Caviar had cantered on the Al Bahathri in front of the cameras of the world’s racing media, Frankel went largely unnoticed in his customary place at the head of the trainer’s string alongside his three-parts brother and constant companion Bullet Train.
The colt was at ease under his regular rider Shane Fetherstonhaugh and, having worked on Wednesday morning in what would have been his penultimate pipe-opener ahead of Tuesday’s Queen Anne Stakes, he had an easy stretch on Warren Hill’s four-furlong canter.
Despite the much-mooted possibility of the two stars meeting on the racecourse, a Frankel-Black Caviar clash will almost certainly remain the stuff of dreams. At present, the world’s two best racehorses have come as close as they are ever likely to be, stabled less than a mile apart as the crow flies, at opposite ends of Newmarket’s Long Hill.
The producer of a promotional film shown at the Global Sprint Challenge press conference on Thursday morning obviously has more romantic notions of a match, however, as race footage of the two horses ended with the slogan ‘Frankel and Black Caviar: coming soon to a breeding shed near you’.
It’s a lovely thought, but first let’s see them both maintain their unbeaten records on what will be the most exciting opening and closing days Royal Ascot has ever known.