Where to for Lochinvar Art?
While many are talking about Lochinvar Art’s possible North American raid, trainer-driver David Moran is focused on more immediate targets.
Yes North America is a serious option and Moran would love to campaign his superstar himself against the world’s best pacers, but, before that, cementing his crown as Australasia’s best pacer awaits him through races like the Hunter Cup and Miracle Mile.
Lochinvar Art capped his four-year-old season with a fourth Group 1 victory of the term when he won by “half the straight” in the Vicbred 4YO entires and geldings final at Melton’s stellar New Year’s Eve meeting.
The son of Modern Art raced 19 times for the season for 13 wins, three seconds, a third and $675,010 in stakemoney. One of those seconds was in the Miracle Mile.
Moran will decide in the “next week or so” where Lochinvar Art runs next.
Logic says his hometown Group 2 Shepparton Gold Cup on January 16, but Moran said it’s no given.
“He’s having a few days off now, it’s been a busy couple of months for him and lots more to come,” he said.
“The plan is Shepparton, but it’ll depend on how he feels the week leading into it.
“Otherwise, I won’t be afraid to wait and go straight into the Ballarat Cup (January 23).”
The Hunter Cup, which shapes as the best race Australasia has seen for many years, is on February 6 at Melton.
Lochinvar Art is top seed, but stars like King Of Swing, Self Assured, Chicago Bull and Spankem also probable runners.
Moran wasn’t surprised Lochinvar Art zoomed away to win by 30.5m in a scorching 1min51.8sec mile rate for 2240m in the Vicbred final.
“I really thought it was the best I’d had him. I kept saying to myself I shouldn’t be too confident going into a big race, but I really just thought he was so well, he’d win no matter what happened,” he said.
“As far as America goes, it’s something Kevin (Gordon, owner) and I have talked about and it’s a real chance, but we want to get through these couple of months of big races and go from there.
“I’d love to take him across myself, it would be the chance of a lifetime, but we could also send him to one of the top trainers over there if we decide he should go.”