Breeders' Cup International Scouting Report: New Mandate

December 31st, 2020

As a well-bred winner of the Royal Lodge (G2), New Mandate has considerable upside for trainer Ralph Beckett, who won the 2008 Breeders’ Cup Marathon with Muhannak. But New Mandate’s status as a gelding bars him from pursuing the prestigious European classics, and his biggest opportunities might well lie abroad. Indeed, that’s likely why he’s here for the Juvenile Turf.

New Mandate is by freshman sire New Bay, hero of the 2015 French Derby (G1) and third to Golden Horn in that year’s Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe (G1). It’s a most promising sign that this Dubawi stallion is already getting 2-year-old Group winners, for his progeny are entitled to improve with maturity. That’s the same impression conveyed from New Mandate’s maternal side. He’s out of Mishhar, a daughter of 2007 Epsom Derby (G1) star Authorized who was 0-for-16 herself but from a deep family, with dual French classic vixen Avenir Certain a near relation.

Twice offered at Arqana, New Mandate was unsold for €45,000 as a December weanling but sold for €35,000 the following August. Elliott Bloodstock bought him for the Lucra Partnership with Beckett, who realized last winter that New Mandate would have to be gelded: “he was like Warren Beatty on steroids.”

His energies now more readily channelled, New Mandate had shown enough to go off as the 11-4 favorite in his July 11 premiere at Ascot. He worked out a good trip in the slipstream of the leader, launched a challenge, but couldn’t sustain it as he checked in third to the useful Jumby. Two weeks later at Newmarket, New Mandate bounded to the early lead, raced too freely, and tired to third behind Godolphin blueblood (and future Group 3-placed) Dhahabi.

Beckett tried the nursery route next, and New Mandate put it all together toting top weight of 134 pounds at Sandown. He reverted to close stalking tactics, still inclined to over-race a tad, but powered through a gap to win with a jaunty ear cocked.

Privately purchased by Hong Kong-based Marc Chan, New Mandate stepped up to listed stakes company in the Flying Scotsman during Doncaster’s St Leger Festival. He took a strong hold for new rider Frankie Dettori, who had to use all his tradecraft to get him to rate near the back. But New Mandate quickened willingly to take a narrow opening on the far rail, bulling his way past hot Godolphin favorite One Ruler, and gamely outdueling Laneqash.

Although Laneqash flopped on heavy in his follow-up, One Ruler has validated the form by capturing the Autumn (G3) and placing second in the Vertem Futurity Trophy (G1).

New Mandate himself had boosted the form in the interim in the “Win and You’re In” Royal Lodge. His recent 7-furlong tests strongly pointed to his readiness for a mile, and he saw it out convincingly, albeit in a steadily-run race that showcased his turn of foot. Again having to be cajoled into waiting at the rear, he angled out to attack, stormed to the front, and held Ontario safe under good handling by Dettori. Ontario has run below his best since, but third-placer Gear Up came back to land the Oct. 24 Criterium de Saint-Cloud (G1).

A two-turn race will be a novelty for a juvenile who’s used to straight courses, and he’s yet to be tested on ground worse than good. Yet New Mandate is a progressive type with a proper turn of foot. The prospect of an American-style pace could help him settle, and Beckett told Nick Luck that he’s learning to settle at home.