Day At The Track

Lochinvar Art to take on Ride High

04:02 PM 24 Aug 2020 NZST
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Lochinvar Art,Harness racing
Lochinvar Art
Stuart McCormick photo

The battle lines are drawn, with the much-anticipated match-up between Ride High and Lochinvar Art scheduled for Saturday night at Ballarat, seeing off what's seemed the longest winter.

The Ballarat Beast has taken all before him this campaign but faces his greatest challenge to date on his home track when he finally crosses swords with Victoria's fastest ever pacer, Lochinvar Art.

The latter's trainer-driver David Moran will back up his 4YO Bonanza and Chariots Of Fire winning star this Saturday night, reassured by Lochinvar Art's convincing victory in last Saturday's Simonds Homes Bendigo Pace.

Moran joined RSN927 and SENTrack this morning to declare his superstar would face off against Clayton Tonkin's speed machine Ride High at Bray Raceway.

"Providing everything goes good between now and Saturday we are probably going to go ahead," Moran told RSN927.

"He'd been pretty good all week. I knew he'd need the run a little bit, but once I got up outside Jodi (Quinlan on Major Times) at around the 900-metre mark I knew he was on song then, because he wanted to get up and stare him down. I knew he was back then."

It was a significant bounce back for Lochinvar Art after he was undone in his previous start by Major Times, when he was later found to have suffered a minor viral infection.

Moran said Ballarat this Saturday was "not the most ideal timing" for Lochinvar Art to lock horns with Victoria's most explosive pacer, but this hit-out was the best option owing to no suitable race at Shepparton the following week and an unsuitably long trip to Terang the only option on September 13. 

"I'm not going to say I'm confident by any means," he said. "There's no doubt that if (Lochinvar Art) did draw inside him that Ride High would have to be good to beat him.

"(Lochinvar Art) probably needs to be rock hard to race a horse of that ilk. (Ride High)'s in good form and he's a great horse. (Lochinvar Art) probably needs to be 110 per cent rock hard to beat him."

But Moran said he "did feel a lot relief when we crossed the line, that's for sure" when Lochinvar Art returned to winning form at Bendigo and was hopeful he would draw inside Ride High, with both having the maximum 120 national rating points.

"This preparation has been a little bit up and down," he said. "It would be good to have another couple of runs under his belt, but at the end of the day if he did happen to draw inside him he still will have to be good to beat him."



HRV - Michael Howard

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