A return to Group One company is imminent for Harlech after his pleasing return to New Zealand racing at Te Rapa last Saturday.
The son of Darci Brahma had been racing out of co-trainer Michael Moroney’s Flemington barn over the last year, with his highlight being victory in the Benalla Cup (1406m) last October.
The decision was made for the five-year-old entire to return to Moroney’s Matamata barn and target the Hastings Spring Carnival under the guidance of his New Zealand co-trainer Pam Gerard.
Initially set to have hit first-out in a trial at Taupo, their postponement led to his start in the Gr.2 Foxbridge Plate (1200m) on the weekend where he finished a meritorious fourth.
“I was really happy with his run,” Gerard said. “It wasn’t initially a target for him but with the trial being put off at Taupo it didn’t leave us too much of a choice.
“It was a distance well short of what he needs so I thought he got home very strongly.”
Harlech will now head to Hastings over the next month to target the Gr.1 Tarzino Trophy (1400m) on September 18 and the Gr.1 Windsor Park Plate (1600m) on October 2, with a decision yet to be made on whether he will contest the final leg, the Gr.1 Livamol Classic (2040m) on October 16.
“He will definitely head to the first two, but it is always hard to go down there every two weeks,” Gerard said.
“He is pretty well-travelled and has had three runs under his belt in Melbourne already.
“He has probably got a bit more stamina in him than others may have. We will just take it one race at a time and see how we go.”
After racing on Saturday, Harlech will bypass the Taupo trials on Wednesday where stablemates Dragon Biscuit and Roch ‘N’ Horse will have their first hit-outs for the season.
-NZ Racing Desk
- Pic Trish Dunell