Day At The Track

Pleasant dilemma for record breaker

01:00 PM 27 Jan 2020 NZDT
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Elated trainer-driver David Moran (left) and Kevin Gordon with Lochinvar Art,Harness racing
Elated trainer-driver David Moran (left) and Kevin Gordon with Lochinvar Art

Connections of history-making Victorian speed machine Lochinvar Art now have an enjoyable decision to make for their harness racing superstar-where to next?

Lochinvar Art (Modern Art-Ponder in Paris (Ponder) stopped the clock in 1.48-6 in winning the $100,000 G1 Alabar 4yo Bonanza at Melton on Saturday night. It was the first time the magical 1.50 mile rate had been smashed in the State.

Watch the race replay here! 

"We'll sit down with David (trainer-driver David Moran) and talk it over in the next few days. We have a few options, but there's certainly exciting times ahead," jubilant owner Kevin Gordon, said yesterday.

"In winning the Bonanza, we now have a gold ticket straight into the $200,000 Chariots of Fire in Sydney in just under four weeks' time. David is very keen to give him a start between now and then," he said.

"There's the AG Hunter Cup as well as the $35,000 Echuca Pacing Cup coming up, so there's plenty to think about."

Gordon and his wife Leonie are best-known for their association with greyhound racing, having claimed many of the major features, including the Paws of Thunder, the Sydney Cup and Christmas Cup. But they rate the recent victory by pacer Lochinvar Art as the biggest thrill in racing.

"Apart from the Bonanza being such a prestigious event, being the first Victorian to break a 1.50 mile rate just takes it to another level," Gordon said.

"He went absolutely super. A lot of horses don't progress from their 3yo days, but we are thrilled Lochinvar Art has taken that next step. He has developed physically and is bigger across the back and he's shown this time in he's a lot stronger too.

"The win was a credit to David and he's surely now cemented himself as a top trainer. He works hard and deserves all the success he gets."

Moran worked forward in the Bonanza, waiting until the leading brigade found their positions before taking up the role as pilot.

The talented horseman had a pre-race plan to cover as little ground as possible, but he was hoping his main rival (Mark Purdon's $1.10 fav Self Assured) would be called upon to do "that little extra" at some stages.

"I needed him to do a bit more work because it was the only way I was ever going to beat Mark - his horse is so talented," Moran said.

"It did fall into place for us. While we were one-off and then in front, he was working out three wide to get to being one-off, then I was happy to keep the speed on and have them running."

Self Assured tried his heart out and got to within 4.7m of the winner, but final splits of 27.3 and 26.4 in a race run in record time, made the task most difficult.

"When I opened up just before the final turn and pinched a break, I thought and hoped it just might be mathematically impossible for Mark to get to me."

Moran said he had "a few troubles" with Lochinvar Art in the leadup to the Bonanza.

"He's just been so full of himself this preparation. He's been a handful and actually tried to kick me out of the cart in the Shepparton Cup. While it's good he's feeling so well, he can be a bit of a ratbag," he said.

"I've altered a few things with him, and we should now be fine. I suppose it's just being a colt coming out in him every now and again."

Lochinvar Art's connections are naturally aiming at the season's big races, but Moran said they were mapping out a careful campaign.

"We won't be over racing him like last season, when I think we ran in the first Classic 3yo event and then continued until the last as well. In between he had a trip to Qld. That was a huge year for him," he said.

"We've made a conscious decision not to give him an over taxing campaign, but in saying that, he has pulled up terrific. He was pig rooting and charging about this morning while I was trying to change his rugs, so he's feeling pretty good."

 

Terry Gange

NewsAlert PR Mildura

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