Guy Reed Racing is certainly enjoying the fruits of their labour, with their breeding operation producing some good winners in the last few days. Conga made a winning debut, Three Card Trick bolted up at York and now Triple Distilled followed suit to gain his first win. Tackling nursery company for the first time, Triple Distilled cruised to a 3 length victory in the 6f Markets Betting Exchange Nursery Handicap at Carlisle.
Triple Distilled never struck anyone as a pure 2yr old when he first arrived at Hambleton Lodge. Tall and quite lean, the son of Tamayuz looked as though he may be one for mid to late season. His pedigree disagreed with some tope sprinters throughout the bloodline. It came as quite as shock when Triple Distilled managed all his early preparation comfortably. Once the hard work started he thrived on that too, turning inside out and really developing into a strong looking juvenile. To everyone’s surprise he stepped forward very early to say that he was ready to run.
Starting off at Nottingham Distilled showed good speed for a long way. Unfortunately he couldn’t quite maintain his run throughout the latter stages and weakened away. It was a positive run and one that showed he had the ability but experience was vital for him. He proved this when sent to Ayr for his second run. Again showing good speed, Distilled was far more professional late on and he gave chase to the favourite to finish a solid 2nd. The style of his run tempted Kevin to step him up to 7f but it was a experiment that did not work. Failing to stay he finished towards the rear of the field. Although this wasn’t the run expected it did mean that Triple Distilled earned a handicap mark, which was a very fair 71.
Kevin would normally use a mark and go straight into nursery company, especially with a low 70’s rating. This time he chose not to and Distilled travelled to Hamilton for a movie race. It almost proved to be an inspired decision but Distilled ended up finding just the favourite too good on the day, finishing another solid 2nd. Kevin did learn that ground was key to his colt though, with his two 2nd placed efforts coming with some ease in the ground.
Following his last run the handicapper put a 2lb on to his mark meaning that when he lined up for the 6f nursery at Carlisle it would be off 73. The nine runners which were declared were all in the same sort of form. Although connections felt Distilled was probably well handicapped, the same could be said for a few of the others in the field. Kevin Stott had been in the plate for all bar one of Distilled’s runs and was booked again. Ground was the factor that had been waited upon but it would be a bit of unknown at Carlisle with the weather causing heavy going.
With the ground racing very testing the draw kind of goes out of the window at Carlisle with the jockey’s usually shunning the far side. They field all jumped well and were almost all in a line for the first few strides. The favourite Summer Blossom was one of the fastest into stride and went straight for the lead. It was a mad dash for a few of them eager to go forward and Kevin had to roust Distilled along to to maintain his good position from the start and also keep tabs on the leading favourite. Racing downhill they quickly passed through the first furlong and around the start of the home bend. Deciding to keep away from the far side they shifted straight to the centre of the track and aimed towards the stands side. Tracking the lead, Kevin sat and went with the field as they flew through the early stages.
As they continued down to the 4f marker Danny Tudhope, on the leader, made no secret of his intended tactics as he directly made a beeline for the stands side rail. All the field followed suit and now they began to settle down into more of a bunch along the rail. Triple Distilled just lost a couple of places with this move and sat in mid division. Kevin just had to niggle away to ensure that there was no more ground given away. The pace settled down once the leader got to the rail but with half of the race already run this would only be for a few strides. The back markers were already being hard ridden as the field stretched out but with heavy going and a stiff finish there was plenty of racing left.
They got racing a long way from with the favourite already under the pump well over 2 1/2f from home. Triple Distilled had moved up to sit just off the pace and with the injection of pace Kevin angled out to begin his run. The field just began to bunch up a little closer with the leaders unable to kick clear and those back markers beginning to make up ground. Distilled just hung a little when Kevin asked him to go and challenge but with a change of hands he straightened up to go in pursuit. Passing the 2f marker and the fav was now looking like a sitting duck as So Hi Storm moved through travelling well and Distilled followed towards the centre of the track.
Between the 2f and 1f poles the field that had bunched up now opened back up again with Summer Blossom, So Hi Storm and Triple Distilled just breaking away. Although the trio had a break of a few lengths on the rest, there was an uphill finish coming which could easily scupper these runs, especially with the energy sapping heavy ground. Distilled was now balanced and started to pick up down the centre whilst the favourite Summer Blossom was really getting a second wind along the rail.
Moving into the final furlong, Triple Distilled and Summer Blossom had repelled So Hi Storm who was ow floundering and retreating as the leaders kicked on. Distilled got his head in front but the fav was proving a tough adversary. Kevin had coaxed his mount to the front and now he had in order it was time to go for home. Pulling his stick through to the right hand, Kevin gave Distilled a couple of quick flicks. The juvenile responded well and pulled away from his rival. Now the colt earned a length lead and was looking stronger than his rivals. Using his big stride, Distilled began to power away from the field as he climbed the uphill finish. The lead stretched to 3 then 4 lengths and the race looked over with nothing able to finish with a rattle. Mayfair Spirit was coming through to challenge but that was only going to be for the runner up berth. With 100yards to run he just began to edge right again, likely due to loneliness in front, but Kevin quickly adjusted his run. Once straightened up again it allowed Kevin to start easing down with the race safely in the bag. Pulling up, Triple Distilled won by a comfortable 3 lengths.
Triple Distilled has improved with every run and it is clear now that quick ground is not his forte. He loved the ease in the ground and really powered through it, especially in the latter stages when he met the rising ground. The handicapper will reassess him now and surely add a good few pounds. Obviously it is great that Distilled enjoys the ground with the end of the season likely to bring about easy going more often than not. Guy Reed Racing have enjoyed a great week with three winners and it would be no surprise to see Triple Distilled add to this in the near future. There is a good nursery at Ayr that might well be the next port of call for Triple Distilled.