Front-running displays land Bondi Shake a winner and Larry Lincoln a fine second
Trainer Al Barnes loved the report he got from his driver son Hayden after Bondi Shake delivered at Albion Park today.
“Hayden said he’s a hard horse to get past when he’s in front - he’s tough and he wants to win.”
That summed up beautifully the horse’s front-running performance when he reeled of his closing 800 metres in 56.3 and 400 in 27.9 to beat Blue Shard by 2.3 metres.
“I like that he’s developing a bit of gate speed too,” Barnes said. “He’s pacing well and starting to put it all together.
“He travelled a lot stronger in front today. He’s still got a lot to learn on how to be a racehorse but he’ll keep improving.”
Barnes says Bondi Shake will have one more start as a two-year-old - the season which was extended because of Covid-19 is due to end in the New Year.
“He’ll be in three-year-old class racing in the new year but he’s racing them now anyway. He was a rating 35 today in a 35 to 51 class today so he stepped up and won anyway.”
The win took Bondi Shake’s record to two wins, two seconds and a fourth in only five starts since being sent to Brisbane for earnings of A$12,324. His New Zealand record was a poor two placings from 11 starts.
Bondi Shake is raced by Lincoln Farms’ John and Lynne Street and a big group of partners including Bob Best, Merle Gradwell, Pat Gubb, Lance Myocevich, Steve Beckett, Kevin Bell, the Joeraeme Syndicate, Margaret Rabbitt and the Athenry Syndicate.
Larry Lincoln showed another string to his bow when he led the following race and succumbed only in the last few metres to the hot $1.60 favourite Ranger Bomb.
“Hayden was rapt with his gate speed. We haven’t asked him for it lately but it’s nice to see him use it and still get home.”
Larry Lincoln couldn’t finish off his races initially after doing early work but Barnes says he’s growing in stature as he gets more confidence.
“Hayden said he really settled well today and he ripped home the last quarter. He couldn’t do much more, running home in 26.2.
“The winner is being set for the Chariots Of Fire so it’s no disgrace being beaten by him.”
The Craig Cross-trained Ranger Bomb was clocked to run the 1660 metres in 1:57.9, a mile rate of 1:54.3 and Larry Lincoln was just 1.4 metres behind at the post, the final 800 metres in 55.6.
Man Of Action, who weakened from the trail to seventh, is tired, says Barnes, and will go for a break.
More news in Harness
Quick back-up for Bondi Shake on Friday and Hustler returns in great heart on Saturday
Lone Star colours on Sugar Apple signal new partnership with top owner Trevor Casey
Tough assignment for Bondi Shake on Tuesday and Larry’s going to need luck too
With a better draw, Captain Nemo’s set to salute the judge at Cambridge on Thursday
Our runners this week: How our trainers rate them
Tuesday at Albion Park
Race 6: Bondi Shake
7.17pm NZ time
“It’s a very good race, the hardest he’s tackled, and if he can run a place he’ll be doing well. I’m really interested to see how he goes because he’s improving all the time and hopefully he can step up again.”
Race 7: Larry Lincoln
7.57pm NZ time
“Larry got away on us a bit over Christmas but we’ve worked him a bit stronger since. He’s up to them but, from the draw, he’ll get back. We’ll drive him for luck. If the pace is on, he’ll run on. If they walk and sprint, it will make it tough.”
Thursday night at Cambridge
Race 2: Themightyserina
“One the second row is probably a good draw for her. Hopefully from there she can get a good trip and run into a place.”
Race 4: Brodie Lindenny
“If he can get away a bit quicker than last time from the pole he could finish a lot closer. He won’t be setting the world on fire but he’s honest enough.”
Race 5: Brian Christopher
“He led easily enough when he drew one at Palmy so hopefully he can do that again. That suits him as he’s not a sit-sprinter, he’s better when he can roll along a bit.”
Friday night at Auckland
Race 7: Argyle
“He looks our best early runner. He’s a big, powerful boy and from the one draw looks to have the best chance of our three on Friday night.”
Race 7: Sugar Apple
“You can’t fault what he’s been doing at the workouts and trials. He’s a neat little horse and I’m picking he’ll go a good race. Drawing wide will inconvenience him a bit. He’ll go back and hopefully get home really well.”
Race 7: Simply Sam
“He’s an improving horse, I like him a lot. I think he’ll be the big improver. If Argyle holds up from one, and he can sit behind him, he won’t be far away.”
Race 9: Major Grace
“Seven is a tough draw for her. If she’d drawn in closer I’d have been happier. But she’s a nice filly and won’t be far away.”
Race 10: Captain Nemo
“He hasn’t got the greatest record at Auckland. He tends to hit a knee going that way. He was good the other day at Cambridge. If he doesn’t pummel his knees he shouldn’t be too far away.”
Friday at Albion Park
Race 3: Bondi Shake
4.03pm NZ time
“It’s a nice race for him and he’ll be hard to beat. He’s come through Tuesday’s run as good as gold. That race was brutal. He was a little weak at the finish but that’s the quickest he’s gone. It’s not an overly strong field.”
Saturday night at Albion Park
Race 3: Northview Hustler
9.35pm NZ time
“The draw’s not a bad thing as he’s still following speed. If he trails Watch Pulp Fiction, he wins, but it’s more likely he’ll be three fence, in which case he can run second. He’s trained really well this week.”