Australasian superstar pacer Lochinvar Art (Modern Art) appeared tuned and bang on track for his harness racing return after an emphatic and seemingly effortless qualifier trial win at the Meadowlands today (Jan. 22).
“Arty” has been at the Pine Bush NY stable of Shane and Lauren Tritton since October and has been progressed quietly through his early and mid-preparation, his first since suffering a minor bleed at his final Australian run in September.
Lochinvar Art now races with Lasix which is an anti-bleeding agent permitted under North American race rules to assist horses with exercise-induced pulmonary hemorrhage (EIPH), or bleeding from the lungs.
Tritton was happy to take his time with the star to allow him to recover and acclimatize, but on all appearances at the Meadowlands today, the stallion’s campaign is now reaching the “business end”.
Driver Lauren Tritton eased the pacer at the start to find the back of the leader, then moved into clear running at the 300-metre mark – powering away to win hard held by four lengths and stopping the clock at 1:52.1.
LOCHINVAR ART REPLAY QUALIFIER (No sound due to no commentator in qualifier races)
“We will see how he pulls up,” said trainer Shane Tritton, “But he won’t trial again. It will be either race next week or the week after and most likely at Meadowlands. But like today we don’t plan on stretching him out too much his first start. We would like to ease him back into racing. He did that today in 1st gear. The longer we can do that with him the better.”
Tritton described Lochinvar Art’s qualifier as “awesome” and, all being well, owner Kevin Gordon said he and his wife Leonie hoped to be organizing a rush trip to the USA later this week.
“It was very exciting – he seemed to go to the line well within himself in the trial,” Gordon said.
“Just depending now how he pulls up the plan is to race probably next Saturday night. But we will just see how he recovers,” he said.
“We will be heading over when he does, that’s a definite – we wouldn’t miss it for the world!”
Lochinvar Art wasn’t the only potential international star unveiled at the Meadowlands qualifiers Saturday by Team Tritton.
The six-year-old Irish square gaiter Harry Knows (Armstrong Jet) was sent to Pine Bush, NY from the Patrick Kane Stable in December, who believed the one-mile Meadowlands circuit and the mobile start conditions would suit the horse down to the ground.
A winner of 23 races from 33 starts, Harry Knows was the 2021 LeTROT/Irish Harness Racing Association Trotter of the Year and the 2022 IHRA Trotter of the Year, with career earnings of around $AU50,000.
Harry Knows stepped out for the first time in the USA at the Meadowlands qualifiers, and driven by Lauren, scored a comfortable win in the time of 1:53.4.
HARRY KNOWS REPLAY QUALIFIER (No sound due to no commentator in qualifier races)
“He is a serious trotter – we love him, and we’re excited. He seems like a special horse,” Tritton said.
by Terry Gange, for Harnesslink
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