Noble Mission put aside his sometime wayward tendencies to impressively make all in the Group 3 Gordon Richards Stakes at Sandown. Frankel’s full brother has failed to live up to his siblings high standards so far in his career but this performance shows that he retains plenty of ability of his own, especially when the ground is soft.
Lady Cecil’s 5yo was afforded a soft lead under James Doyle and having set a decent pace throughout in the testing conditions, pulled clear with ease from a tiring field. The returning Telescope, who’s connections had warned that he may need the run earlier in the week, did seem to struggle in the ground and rolled home 9 lengths behind the impressive winner.
“Looking at the race, there didn’t seem to be anything that wanted to go there with intent,” jockey Doyle said afterwards. “We thought about it before.
“After riding in the first I thought the ground was very testing and that would play to our strengths, so that made our mind up.
“We don’t want to get too carried away, but he’s done it nicely. Whether it will work again we’re not sure.
“He’s been called a few names in the past, but he’s bounced out and led there. He’s kept galloping all the way to the line, so it’s hard to fault him.”
Teddy Grimthorpe, racing manager to Noble Mission’s owner, Khalid Abdullah, said:
“We discussed it beforehand in the paddock and saying there wasn’t much speed in the race, so we said we’d have to be brave.
“Physically and mentally, he’s done well over the winter.
“He’s been great at home and he’s trained really nicely at home. Jane (Lady Cecil) and the team have done a great job with him.
“Prince Khalid kept him in training, so hopefully we’ll progress from here.”
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