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Sunday 15 September 2019

Which Stallions Have The Highest Stud Fees?

Horse breeding is big business.

It sounds easy. You send your broodmare to visit Frankel. And wham, bam, thank you mam, pay £275,000 for what I imagine is a few minutes ''work''. To be honest, I have no idea what goes on behind stable doors, but I guess there is a lot more to it than mother nature. Perhaps that's exactly how it goes.

Anyway, that certainly is the way to make money. Frankel won 14 out of 14 races and amassed total earning of just under £3M. It sounds a lot of money. However, each loss on the racecourse could actually cost money. The stallion fee of £275,000 may have gone down if he had lost a couple of races. Also, a horse may sustain an injury on the gallops or the racecourse. A huge loss of not only a life but money when you consider all of those £275,000 invoices disappearing in a puff of smoke. 

You can see the truth of the financial matter when you consider Frankel only need to cover 17.1 mares to earn £3M in stallion fees. When you take a look at 2017 yearlings, Frankel sired at least 94 offspring. This totals an amazing £16450000 (£16M). 

Take a look at this year's 2019 two-year-old offspring by visiting      

You can understand why breeding is such a prosperous avenue for a talented horse which makes their mark on the racecourse. It is the reason why some two-year-olds are retired from racing after that first year simply because it makes financial sense. For example, Zebedee, trained by Richard Hannon in 2010, raced just seven times, achieved four wins and total earning of £162,819. A stud fee of 7,500 euros doesn't sound a fortune but it is a very wise investment for owner Mrs Julie Woods who purchased Zebedee at the yearling sales for 70,000 guineas. When he had covered 133 mares, he had earned a cool 1m euros. (A year or twos work.) 

Frankel concluded his racing career on the 20th October 2012 when winning the Qipco Champion Stakes (British Champions Middle Distance) (Group 1). He was just four years old. 

At a rate of £16M per years, he has probably earned Juddmonte Farms well over £100M. And he's only just getting started. At the time of writing, he is eleven-years-old. When Frankel could be expected to live until his late teens if not much older, you are talking of a horse with the potential of earning £200+M. 

But how do other stallion stud fees compare to Frankel?

Well, even though you may imagine such a huge fee of £175,000 is quite amazing, he is very affordable compared to others. 

Admittedly not too many stallions cost more but there are a couple which springs to mind. 

Dubawi is now seventeen years old and assessed as the world's leading sire over the last three years. The sire of six G1 winners in 2018. In fact, he is the only British stallion to sire over 100 Group Winners. 

His stud fee for 2019 is £250,000. It is a staggering figure built on the reputation of a super stallion when you consider he only run eight times, winning five races and achieving total earning of £699,341.  He retired from racing at the age of three. 

Now £350,000.

The stallion of Frankel, among many horses, is Galileo who has remarkable success. His stud fee is simply detailed as ''Private''. 

We can only imagine it is a sum nearer £300,000.  

Sadly Galileo has passed away since this article was written and many of the sire fees either higher or lower. Updated Frankel from £175,000 - £275,000. 

Lots of money.