Noble Could be Handed Dante Mission

Following his impressive seasonal return in maiden company at Newbury’s Greenham meeting, the Sir Henry Cecil-trained, Noble Mission, could be asked to tackle one of the most significant Derby trails of them all, the Group 2 Betfred Dante Stakes at York, on May 17, writes Elliot Slater.

There had been huge interest in Noble Mission from well before his racecourse debut at Yarmouth, last October, where he shaped with definite promise in finishing a five-length second of the 15-runner field behind Godolphin’s exciting potential Derby colt Swedish Sailor.

The important fact is: Noble Mission, the Prince Khaled Abdullah-owned horse, is a full-brother to the mighty Frankel, the unbeaten multiple Group 1 winner, who is currently rated the best horse in the world by some margin. Frankel has been a staple of the horse racing betting news, in recent weeks.

With so much to live up to, Noble Mission was always going to be fighting something of a losing battle, but, despite being fitted with a hood for his three-year-old bow, the son of Galileo travelled like a potentially useful performer in a competitive mile maiden, which he eventually won by nearly four-lengths from the promising, Dream Tune.

Cecil was keen not to get too carried away with the performance, but all concerned with the winner suggested that one of the major Derby trials would be next on the agenda, for a horse who seems to be developing nicely, and could yet go some way towards adding to the family trophy cabinet.

The Dante Stakes has always been one of the most revealing of the big Derby trials, and Cecil could well send Noble Mission for the race, although Abdullah has a number of other potential runners in the contest. Newmarket winner, Model Pupil, Stipulate, Starboard, and Wrotham Heath could compete, amongst the many horses currently entered for the extended 10-furlong contest.

Noble Mission is currently the fifth-favourite for the win at the Dante Stakes, at 49/10 in the horse racing betting.