Troubled-paced superstar Lochinvar Art will continue his racing career in North America.
After five days of deliberation, owner Kevin Gordon confirmed the $1.4 million winner had been booked on a direct flight from Sydney to Chicago on October 5.
Lochinvar Art, who had a minor bleed after Saturday night’s Gammalite Free-For-All in Melton, will continue his Aussie connection with Gordon by retaining full ownership and former Aussie pair Shane and Lauren Tritton taking over coaching .
“When he had the little bleed last Saturday night I decided it was either his retirement or a move to the States and I still think he’s got what it takes so he’s leaving the States United,” Gordon said.
“I’ve spoken to a lot of top riders who said it would have been too difficult to try to keep him racing here. He would have needed his races to be spaced out and that would have ruled out races like the ‘Inter Dominion and Miracle Mile.
“He would have been relegated to basically a free horse for all on Saturday night at Melton and that’s below a horse as good as he is.”
The fact that US rules allow Lochinvar Art to run on the anti-hemorrhagic agent Lasix is a game-changer.
“It’s a different world and that means he’ll be able to compete on a level there and have the chance to get back to his best form,” Gordon said.
Gordon, a proud Novocastrian, said a long relationship with Lauren Tritton opened the door for her and her husband, Shane, to form Lochinvar Art in the United States.
“Lauren and Shane are Novocastrians like me. I’ve known Laurent for a long time. His first Metropolitan Saturday winner as a junior rider came on a horse I owned called Our Crown Law,” Gordon said.
“If they are the best coaches there, who knows, but I think they are some of the best.
“I know them, I trust them and I can be sure they will do the right thing with a horse that is very special to me and so many other people.”
Shane Tritton said from his New York stables: “We are privileged to be a part of it. It all happened very quickly and we are so excited.
“There are so many examples of good horses coming here, getting a little bit of help and doing fantastic things. I hope it’s the same with Lochinvar Art.
Former driver-coach David Moran is understandably upset with Gordon’s decision.
“I get it, I get it. It’s been a tough time for David with his seven-month suspension, then the day before it ended and he got back into things, Lochinvar Art has a bleed and it’s happening,” Gordon said. .
“David has a lot to do. Of course he would have been eager to get back with ‘Arty’, but last Saturday night things changed and we have to do what’s right for the horse now. He’s been so good to us .”
Lochinvar Art ran 56 times for 28 wins, 22 placings and cashed $1,405,516.
His biggest wins came in the 2021 Hunter Cup and 2020 Victoria Cup. He also ran second in the 2020 Miracle Mile.
* Adam Hamilton is a paid contributor who writes about harness racing for News Corp
Originally published as Owner confirms US move for harness racing superstar Lochinvar Art