Herlihy back driving Bolt
By Michael Guerin
Trainer Tony Herlihy is hoping residual fitness will be enough to see Bolt For Brilliance back in the winner’s circle for the first time this campaign this Friday.
The two-time Jewels winner goes into the 1700m open class trot at Alexandra Park having not raced since his third in the record-run Dominion on November 12.
That was his fourth start this campaign, all in the South Island, meaning Herlihy hasn’t actually driven him in a race since the Jewels.
With travel and the need for a freshen up after the rigours of Cup week, Bolt For Brilliance hasn’t trialled since but Herlihy is confident that won’t be an issue on Friday even against speedster Temporale, who has beaten him in similar races at Alexandra Park before.
“He will be fit enough after the hard racing he had down south,” says Herlihy.
“He had a few days off after that but they don’t lose too much fitness during that and he has worked well this week.
“So he is ready to go.”
Herlihy says the 1700m mobile, if which he has drawn inside Temporale, is ideal as a comeback race then Bolt For Brilliance may bypass the first of the two handicap trots coming up but contest the Greenlane Cup on January 31.
Herlihy also brings talented lower grade pacer Melanion back to the races on Friday and expects him to be in for a good campaign.
“He has been trialling against some good horses and I think he will go well but it is his first start for a while and John Dickie’s horse Old Town Road has been racing very well and looks hard to beat.” Meanwhile, punters should look out for Herlihy’s soon to be juvenile Seve when he makes it to the races.
The son of Vincent impressively beat the older horses when trialling as a yearling at Pukekohe two weeks ago, with his sectional including a 27.8 last 400m.
“He is a nice big horse and he has had a week off and we will look for a two-year-old race for him in the New Year if they get off the ground.”