King swings back

By Adam Hamilton

AUSTRALIA’S pacing big guns are trading blows from afar at the moment.

Just over a week ago, Lochinvar Art blazed his way to a 30-metre win in he Group 1 Vicbred 4YO final a Melton.

This week it was King Of Swing’s turn to return from a freshen-up and scorch closing splits of 52.9 and 25.7sec to win as he liked by 9.6m over classy stablemate Alta Orlando at Menangle on Saturday night.

King Of Swing, who hadn’t raced since winning the Group 1 Blacks A Fake at Albion Park on December 12, looks bigger and better than ever.

But so does Lochinvar Art.

The pair will meet again in the $500,000 Group 1 Hunter Cup at Melton on February 6.

King Of Swing holds a 2-1 edge through wins in last year’s Hunter Cup and Miracle Mile, but Lochinvar Art did win their last clash emphatically in the Victoria Cup on October 10.

It’s Lochinvar Art’s turn to strut his stuff again next weekend when he heads to his hometown the $70,000 Group 2 Shepparton Gold Cup.

“He had a couple of quiet days after the Vicbred, but he’s on target for Shepparton and then it’s on to Ballarat (January 23),” Lochinvar Art’s trainer-driver David Moran said.

Luke McCarthy was thrilled with how King Of Swing felt Saturday night and confirmed he would have just one more lead-up run before the Hunter Cup.

“He did that so well. I couldn’t be happier with him. He’s as good or maybe even better than we’ve ever had him,” he said.

“There’s another Menangle race for him on Saturday week (January 23) and that’ll top him off nicely.”

So both King Of Swing and Lochinvar Art will run on January 23, but in different states with Lochinvar Art at the Ballarat Cup.

With the Kiwi stars out of the Hunter Cup, it looks a two-horse race with the Aussie TAB having Lochinvar Art a surprisingly short $1.70 favourite and King Of Swing at $3.

WA’s best pacer Chicago Bull is $9 third elect, but he’s far from certain to come.

“He won’t be going unless these (Covid) travel restrictions are lifted in time,” trainer Gary Hall Sr said.

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