Day At The Track

Partnership makes a golden start

07:59 PM 30 Mar 2019 NZDT
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Lochinvar Art, harness racing
Lochinvar Art
Bathurst Harness Racing Club Photo

Shepparton harness racing team Laura Crossland and David Moran have made a golden start to their official training partnership.

The couple have shared the load of training a growing team at Kialla for many years, but they landed their biggest winner, their first Group One success, just two days after the joint training arrangement was formalized.

Stable star Lochinvar Art (Modern Art USA - Ponder In Paris (Ponder USA) made a one act affair of the $104,000 Bathurst Gold Chalice Final for colts and geldings at Bathurst on Friday night.

“He absolutely deserved that win as he’s had some terrible barrier draws and bad luck in some of his other big races,” Crossland said.

“There’s no doubt that the horse could have claimed a big scalp prior to this, but I guess that’s racing and you’ve got to take the good with the bad.

“The Bathurst feature race looked really suitable on paper and we thought, without getting ahead of ourselves, that it was his chance to win a Group One.”

Lochinvar Art and David Moran (Ashlea Brennan Photo)

There was also gold for another Victorian stable, with the strong Margaret Lee team taking home the Tooheys New Gold Crown Group One Final. Unbeaten colt Jilliby Nitro (Bettors Delight-Kiewa Valley (Safely Kept) scored impressively in the two-year-old colts and geldings event, brilliantly handled by young Jason Lee. Jilliby Nitro posted a career-best in 1:53-8 (including quarters of 27.4 and 27.6) in his dominant all-the-way victory.

While Moran and Lochinvar Art headed off to Bathurst, Crossland stayed home to look after the couple’s other 12 stable representatives.

“It was certainly a bit different sitting home with our kids watching the race on television, that’s for sure,” Crossland said.

“I would have loved being there, but you can’t just jump up and go to where you want to because there’s always work to be done at home.

“And besides we have four runners at the Wagga meeting tomorrow (Sunday) and that means leaving Shepparton at 7am.”

Crossland admitted that she had a celebration after the race with a few beers.

“David was fairly ecstatic and probably a bit relieved as well. And it was not only great for us, but also our owner in Kevin Gordon, who’s from Sydney,” he said.

“Kevin has been fantastic. The Chalice is a prestigious race and we are rapt to be able to get that win for him.”

Lochinvar Art and all the winning connections

Connections have decided against a New Zealand trip to Auckland to contest the $150,000 Jewels.

“Our plan is to stay at home and chase the Breeders Challenge in Sydney as well as all the Sires events in Melbourne,” Crossland said.

“We thoroughly enjoy any long trips to Sydney because they go out of their way to look after you. They really know how to spoil you.

“Lochinvar Art will now have a freshen-up in the paddock. We were in two minds about that, though, because he thrives so much on racing.”

Moran got the perfect score of 10 out of 10 for his drive at Bathurst, which just had “brilliant” written all over it.

Lochinvar Art

After starting from the inside back row draw, Moran was off the pegs in a flash. The leaders rolled along at a steady clip, posting a first half of 58.1, with Lochinvar Art settling second last.

Moran made a three wide move coming to the bell to sit outside leader and main rival in Shoobee Doo (Amanda Turnbull).  With 400 metres to go, it was evident Lochinvar Art was full of running with the fuel gauge of a few of his rivals sitting on orange.

Moran released his stranglehold and immediately put two lengths on the field, with final splits of 28.1 and 28 seconds.

Lochinvar Art, courtesy of four slaps of the rein on his rump, won by 12 metres from College Chapel with a further four metres to Straddie. The overall mile rate for 2260m was 1.54-5.

Laura Crossland and David Moran

“We got to know Kevin after a horse named Smo (McArdle-Laurent Perrier NZ (Sokys Atom) was sent to us. I think (Menangle trainer) Darren Binskin had him for a while and we ended up with him,” Crossland said.

“Smo was actually one of my favorite horses. He was one of the nicest horses you could have, with a beautiful nature.

“We won six races with him and then he went to WA. He ended up winning 13 with 15 placings for nearly $110,000.”

The Crossland/Moran partnership has since prepared such horses for Kevin Gordon as Lochinvar Delight, Lochinvar Hugo and of course, the stable star Lochinvar Art.

Kevin Gordon and Lochinvar Art

“Kevin’s got greyhounds as well, but he’s got the harness racing bug for sure with a two-year-old going nicely and a recent purchase of a yearling,” Crossland said.

Terry Gange

NewsAlert PR Mildura

 

 

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