Trainer chasing higher honours with stable star
Te Aroha trainer Peter Lock’s hopes of success at the highest level rest with Hiflyer.
“If ever I’m going to win a Group One it will be with this horse,” he said. “To have a horse like him is pretty special.”
Hiflyer winning the Gr.3 Grant Plumbing Thomson Handicap at Trentham Photo: Race Images Palmerston North
Lock, who has been training for more than 30 years, produced Hiflyer to win the first stakes race of his career when the five-year-old claimed major honours in Saturday’s Gr.3 Thompson Handicap at Trentham.
He subsequently aired his belief that the son of Tavistock wouldn’t be out of place in the Gr.1 Emirates Stakes (1600m) at Flemington on November 11.
Any plans for Melbourne have now been put on the backburner with domestic targets set for Hiflyer.
“The bottom line is that the horse has the final say and when he got home after Wellington he was a bit tired,” Lock said. “He’s having a week in the paddock to charge his batteries.
“It was a big trip and it was very hot so we have decided we’ll probably go to Australia in the autumn. There are some nice races coming up here for him.”
The first of them is the Gr.1 Rydges Captain Cook Stakes (1600m) at Trentham on December 9.
“If everything is 100 per cent that’s where we’ll go and I’ll be looking to give him a run somewhere before that,” Lock said. “The Thorndon Mile is another race I really want to win.”
Cambridge Stud principal Sir Patrick Hogan, who shares in the ownership of his home-bred, has also suggested another Group One option.
“Sir Patrick said the Zabeel Classic is a race he’d like to win and I think 2000m will suit the horse,” Lock said.
“We just have to be careful where we place him now weight-wise, he’s only a small horse.”
Hiflyer has seven wins and nine placings from his 17 starts up to a mile. – NZ Racing Desk.