By Alex Nolan
Trainer Al Barnes’s prediction that Northview Hustler could be a leading chance in this year’s $200,000 TAB Blacks A Fake was solidified at Albion Park on Tuesday evening.
The Kiwi import, having just his second start in the Sunshine State, posted a blistering mile-rate over the 2138m at Albion Park (1:53.1) when winning the TAB C6 to C7 Pace.
The run came within 0.8 seconds of breaking Bling It On’s 2015 track record of 1:52.4.
Northview Hustler, fittingly, recorded his first win in this month’s Flashing Red Discretionary Handicap (SS).
Flashing Red, who later went on to win two New Zealand Cups, was trained by Barnes (for Stuart Hunter) in the early 2000s.
Barnes told Racing Queensland that Northview Hustler would be set for the Group 1 TAB Blacks A Fake Queensland Championship on July 20, before targeting more races on the 2019/20 Grand Circuit Series.
Barnes said Northview Hustler had thrived at his Marburg base since being gelded.
He set tongues wagging with a 60-plus metre demolition job in a barrier trial at Albion Park prior to his first Queensland start.
“They had a lot of trouble maintaining his condition as he was being coltish. Now that he’s gelded he’s settled, put some bulk on and looks to be a different horse,” Barnes said.
“He should be set for a big carnival.”
Northview Hustler ended up in Barnes’ care after he struck a relationship with New Zealand’s Lincoln Farm about 12 months ago.
“They have been sending me horses to trainer such as Trojan Banner and Lincoln’s Girl,” Barnes said.
“We first met when I bought Lincoln Road 12 months ago.
“He’s a nice horse and will be up there with the Winter Carnival horses.”
Barnes said Lincoln Road would be set for the 4YO Championship at Albion Park on Blacks A Fake Night.