Bondi Shake hasn’t turned a hair in Brisbane’s 38 degree heat and likely to race next week
Man Of Action, who races at Albion Park in Brisbane tonight, welcomed a former Lincoln Farms’ buddy in Bondi Shake to his Marburg stable this week.
And trainer Al Barnes says the new arrival has settled in so well since Monday he hopes to have him at the races as soon as next week.
Barnes hoppled Bondi Shake for the first time early this morning trying to beat the heat of the day, expected to reach 38 degrees.
“Normally when it’s hot like this it takes horses a couple of weeks to settle in but it’s like this fella’s been here for six months. That’s very unusual, especially for a young horse like him. He’s eating and drinking well and is happy in his paddock.”
Barnes’ first impressions of Bondi Shake are all good. “He’s a lovely type, very friendly and he has a great attitude.
“We’ll fast work him at Marburg on Saturday and, if we can get the paperwork done in time we’ll race him on Tuesday, if not, maybe Friday.”
The reason Barnes wants to line up the Somebeachsomewhere gelding so soon is that with the COVID-19 extension to the season, the horse is still classed as a two-year-old until the end of the year.
That means Bondi Shake starts his Queensland campaign on a 35 rating and won’t hit 50 until he’s won four races. But come January 1 he will automatically be rerated to at least 50.
“We have to capitalise as much as we can on those free wins. Ideally we’d like to win four races and earn $20,000 in free money before the end of the year.”
Bondi Shake, who shaped up early as one of Lincoln Farms’ best two-year-olds, has a bleak looking form line with just two placings from 11 starts in New Zealand. But he threw away a win at Cambridge two starts back when he went up to win in the stretch then galloped, turning his head and possibly hitting a knee.
He is raced by Lincoln Farms’ owners John and Lynne Street along with a big team of stalwarts including Auckland Trotting Club steward Pat Gubb, Bob Best, Merle Gradwell, Lance Myocevich, Steve Beckett, Kevin Bell, the Joeraeme Syndicate, Margaret Rabbitt and the Athenry Syndicate.
Most of the same team also race Man Of Action whom Barnes is expecting to run a big race in the third event tonight from gate four.
Though only seventh and 18 metres from the winner last week, Man Of Action started on the second row and had to battle through very heavy conditions in persistent rain.
“I thought it was a good run,” said Barnes. “His sectionals were brilliant.”
Only one horse went faster over the closing 800 than Man Of Action who clocked 55.73, home from the 400 in 27.06.
“And Brendan didn’t ask him to do a lot after the tough run he had the previous start.
“It won’t be easy for him. The three horse (Notorious) will lead and probably park us. But he tries hard in the chair.
“I think he might be a better chaser than a leader. Hayden said when he was in the chair in his previous start he was travelling but as soon as he got to the front he came off the bit and didn’t want to go.
“There are three or four in there who can win but he’s one of the top ones and he’ll be thereabouts. He’ll be brave.”
More news in Harness
Argyle salutes at last and Mark confident he’ll keep the till ticking over in the next grade
Unlucky Argyle deserves to be rewarded at Albion Park tonight - just no bad luck please
Ray looking forward to Lincoln Lou and fully oxygenated Frisco Bay at Cambridge on Friday
Why Lincoln Farms had to buy lot 68 - his older brother Lincoln Lou is ready to rock
Our runners this week: How our trainers rate them
Friday night at Cambridge
Race 3: Lincoln Lou
“He’s a beautiful little horse and I’m looking forward to seeing him run. It’s hard to know how good he is, or how far he’ll go, but I guess we’ll find out on Friday. He’s the one to beat from the draw. If he doesn’t win, he won’t be far away.”
Race 5: Commander Lincoln
“I won’t be holding my breath. He tries hard enough but he lacks a bit of high speed.”
Race 8: Onyx Shard
“It’s two and a half months since she last raced, and she didn’t grow as much as I thought she would, but I’m expecting her to go a good race. Her last two trials have been good and she’s pulled up well.”
Race 8: Obadiah Dragon
“He’ll need a good trip from five but he’s not out of it. He went a good race last time at Cambridge and would be as equal a chance as Onxy Shard.”
Race 8: Beaudiene Rocknroll
“It’s heart-in-the-mouth stuff with him until they let them go but he should step away this time. Zac (Butcher) said the gate went particularly slowly before that race and that’s why he got impatient. I thought he did well to recover for third. If he made the front, where he goes best, he’d be hard to beat.”
Race 9: Frisco Bay
“He’s a tidy horse and I’m expecting a big run. We’ve sorted the problem he had with his breathing last season and he’s right in the zone now after a second and a win at the workouts.”
Mark Dux’s comments
Saturday night at Albion Park
Race 5: Argyle
11.02pm NZ time
“It wouldn’t have mattered where he drew this week, he’s in the money, barring bad luck. He’s going terrific and he gets in so well at the ratings.”