South Coast Arden has first outing across the Tasman

By Adam Hamilton

The early signs are very promising for former star Kiwi pacer South Coast Arden in his new home.

Now with Paul Fitzpatrick in NSW, South Coast Arden made his first public appearance since leaving Brent Mangos’ NZ barn when he trialled at Menangle midweek.

“He had a nice run in behind the leader and won the trial,” Fitzpatrick said. “Gavin (Fitzpatrick) said he felt good and did it comfortably.

“They only went a 1min54sec mile but that’s about what we wanted because it was his first trial and he’d had three months spelling before he came across.”

South Coast Arden won the trial by a half-head in a 1min54.6sec mile, but they zipped home in 54.5 and 26.6sec. Team McCarthy's open-class star Bondi Lockdown was close-up in third spot.

Fitzpatrick said South Coast Arden would have another trial before stepping-out at the races.

“The next trial will be a bit more serious,” he said. “So far, so good. He’s a beautiful horse around the place.”

But talk of a possible Queensland winter campaign is premature.

“Time will tell on that,” Fitzpatrick said. “They sent him across because they thought the big track and mile racing here at Menangle would suit him.

“He’s a big, free-striding horse so you’d like to think the big track would be ideal.

“For now, it’s about getting him back to the races and seeing if we can get him back to that great form he’d shown in NZ.

South Coast Arden boasts a record of 13 wins and $504,021 in earnings.

“He’s a lovely horse to have join the stable.”

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