Hans Holbein bolstered his Classic credentials with an authoritative win in the Chester Vase on Thursday and became the 117th individual stakes winner for his late sire Montjeu in the process.
Pushed to the lead from the stalls by Ryan Moore, the strapping bay made all and readily asserted when asked to quicken in the straight to win by a length and three quarters.
Hans Holbein is definitely bred to mix it with the best of his generation, being a half-brother to Sans Frontieres, whose biggest victory came in the Irish St Leger for Jeremy Noseda and Sir Robert Ogden.
The pair are out of the winning Shirley Heights mare Llia, who finished third in the Listed Pretty Polly Stakes. The dam has produced seven winners from eight runners, also including Kootenay, a daughter of Selkirk who won the Listed Masaka Stakes and Listed Princess Elizabeth Stakes.
Bred by Lavington Stud, Hans Holbein was knocked down to MV Magnier and the China Horse Club for the relatively inexpensive sum of 50,000gns and Book 1 of the Tattersalls October Book 1 Yearling Sale in 2013.
If Hans Holbein lines up in the Derby next month, he will bid to provide his sire with a fifth winner of the Epsom showpiece, following Authorized, Camelot, Motivator and Pour Moi - making Montjeu the most successful sire in English Derby history.