Ride High's next target
By Adam Hamilton
AUSSIE pacing sensation Ride High will chase his 16th win from 17 starts at Terang on September 12.
Trainer Clayton Tonkin confirmed the plan after Ride High posted some scorching sectional times in a workout between races and in the company of a pacemaker at Ballarat last night (Saturday).
“We’ll head to Terang for sure,” Tonkin said. “We are pushing ahead on the basis the Victoria Cup will go ahead (on October 10), so Terang will be his second-last lead-up run going into the Cup.”
With the disappointment of HRV not holding the first clash of Ride High and Lochinvar Art still lingering, Ballarat fans instead got to see Ride High workout.
In a surprise move, Tonkin’s partner, Emma Stewart, took the reins as Ride High worked over a mile in a blistering 1min52.2sec – just 0.7sec outside former stablemate The Storm Inside’s track record.
Ride High’s unofficial splits last night, timed by the Tonkin/Stewart stable, were: 27.95, 31.63, 26 flat and 26.72.
“Emma came back saying she could’ve let him go a lot quicker around the bends,” Tonkin giggled.
“He’s just amazing. He’s run those times so easily tonight and come through it like he hasn’t even been around.
“We were keen to give him a decent hitout tonight because when they didn’t run the race this week, it means he’ll be a month between runs when he goes to Terang.”
Speculation is growing HRV will soon confirm the October 10 timeslot for the $300,000 Group 1 Victoria Cup, despite the probable and obvious COVID-19 related issues with interstate horses.
It is also understood they have slated the $50,000 Smoken Up Sprint (1720m) for the week before the Victoria Cup in the hope that will be the first clash between Ride High and Lochinvar Art.
And that they will then meet again a week later over 2240m in the Victoria Cup.
But all of that depends on the Victorian government easing Stage 4 restrictions on September 13 as planned and enabling metropolitan racing back into Melton.
And there is no certainly Lochinvar Art will be in either race if they go ahead on those dates.
His trainer-driver David Moran is still in talks with connections about a let-up and switching focus to Perth trip for the big Group 1 double – the Fremantle and WA Pacing Cups in November/December.