First Mohican, who once ran the mighty Frankel close on the gallops, puts his unbeaten record on the line in the Betfred November Handicap at Doncaster.
While the world's best racehorse left Sir Henry Cecil's stables in Newmarket on Thursday to begin a career at stud after a flawless 14 successes, First Mohican will be gracing a racecourse for just the fourth time. The workout with Frankel left its mark for a while before First Mohican ever set foot on the track.
"They did one gallop together before Frankel ever ran and my horse joined Frankel at the end. That was four weeks before Frankel ran. The other horse in the gallop was Midsummer Sun," said First Mohican's owner Henry Ponsonby.
"That gallop put paid to my horse not running until the end of the season. After that gallop Henry did ring me to say this is the best horse you'll ever own."
First Mohican duly won on his debut in late October 2010, but then injury struck and he had to miss his entire three-year-old career while his illustrious stablemate continued to carry all before him.
Appearances in two modest handicaps, by comparison, have been all the son of Tobougg has contested on his return this autumn, but he has won them in good style and heads to Town Moor as firm favourite for the big race on the final day of the Flat season.
"We could have done with a better draw (21), but some of the other horses I rate as dangers, including Nicholascopernicus, are also drawn high. In an ideal world I would have liked a better draw. Having said that, he had a bad draw over a mile and a quarter for his last two runs but was able to overcome it," said Ponsonby.
"The mile and a half is obviously a plus on that factor. I think he'll run a big race, but we could have done with a few more showers."
Ponsonby still has high hopes for First Mohican, who will race on as a five-year-old.
"He's going straight from Doncaster to Sir Henry's Cliff Stud, but he wants him back by Christmas. He thinks next year will be his year," said Ponsonby.
23 November 2014Followme poised for Drinmore date
Balbriggan lands Troytown gamble
Vautour impresses on chasing debut
Balbriggan all the way
Un De Sceaux set for Thurles
Vautour off to impressive start
Melodic team face tough choice
Henderson aims at Listed prize
Croco in frame for Topham
Belle set for hurdling campaign
Deputy in Kempton firing line
McBratney banks on Boy progress
Silvi scraps to Betfair glory
Bally sparkles on Mullins' big day
Kelly's a Fixed Brush hero
Faugheen turns on the style
Fenton banned for three years
Amlin double for fab Ferof
New One excels in Haydock romp
Flyer grounds Ascot rivals
Vasco a cut above opposition
22 November 2014Conti strikes Betfair Chase gold
Taken seeking Listed gold
Mogol facing Monksfield test
Vautour makes chasing bow
Gordon enjoys Dundalk spin
McCoy: Landmark swayed judgment
Jacob warms up with brace
Hill peaking for Troytown return
Billy back on winning track
Walsh back for Ferof ride
New ready for Haydock Rush
Cheltenham is Big aim
Mullins eager for Faugheen run
Cue primed for Betfair defence
21 November 2014Geraghty snapped up for Seuil
Volnay aiming for quick repeat
Argocat camp play it cool
Leading Light retired
Frankel filly breaks Irish record
Linton loses Listed place
Doubles for Pipe and Scudamore
Nasty spill for Insole
McCoy targets midweek return
Farm comes Home to roost at Thurles
Flemenstar future dictated by scan
Cue lined up for Haydock return
20 November 2014McNamara joy at turning pro
Volnay seeking Mersey paradise
Sloane Avenue books Dubai date
Spencer reveals Qatar riding snub
Doyle ready for Godolphin challenge
Good news at Huntingdon
BHA hear Linton case
Avenue shows winning way
Grugy diagnosed with hip issue
Meade plots Monksland comeback
Ptit secures swift double
Shanes shines in hurdles win
Mullins' stars set for weekend runs
Haydock aim for Aurore
Medermit in Betfair contention