Distinctive Look has been labelled as ‘unrivalled’ after his stunning win in the $150,000 Central Districts Country Championships Qualifier at Wellington on Sunday.
Mudgee-based trainer David Smith was lost for words after the win, the fourth in Distinctive Look’s past five starts.
The win booked Smith a ticket to the $400,000 Country Championships Final at Royal Randwick on April 1, where he will be joined by fellow Mudgee horse Galaxy Warrior who was half-a-length back in second.
“He’s a tremendous horse,” Smith said.
“The form of this horse, you will not find better form out in the country.
“Even before his back-to-back wins, you had horses winning who ran four or five back behind him as well.
“He’s a super horse.”
Winning jockey Koby Jennings was full of praise for Smith after the win, having previously ridden the four-year-old gelding to back-to-back Highway Handicap victories at both Rosehill and Randwick last preparation.
Jennings and Distinctive Look ($6) sat midfield early on while Art’N’Ollie ($15) led early on while fellow leading contenders Absolute Ripper ($8), Galaxy Warrior ($4.20 favourite) and Jar Of Hearts ($5) sat towards the front.
As the field went down the hill and towards the straight a pocket of space opened for Jennings and he took it before flying home to score.
“It’s fantastic and mainly I’m just thrilled for David and Tash and all the owners,” Jennings said.
“I know how much this means to them to win a big race like this.
“It's not all over yet but so far they have done everything absolutely perfect with this horse.”
Smith had nothing but praise for Jennings, with the race going perfectly to plan.
“I said to him if he was within two, three lengths of them at the top of the straight he’ll do the rest,” Smith said.
“When he was there and had the clear run, it was game over.”
And when it was all over Smith was overjoyed.
And while stunned to win and lost for words, the trainer said the victory was far from any kind of upset result.
“We’ve planned for this from so far out, we didn’t just come here after a couple of wins,” he said after his gelding’s seventh win from 15 starts.
“It’s been a plan for six months since he won the Highway races.
“He’s had the smoothest preparation and its such a big feeling when it comes off. You can’t describe it. It’s why you do it, the early morning and the travel, it’s all for this.”
Cameron Crockett’s Jar Of Hearts made it a all Mudgee trifecta, with Greg Ryan having to settle for third after scoring an early hat-trick.