QUEANBEYAN trainer Neville Layt believes boom three-year-old Red Excitement has proven his ability to step up in distance after his first successful run at 1600m last weekend.
On Sunday, the son of Excites scored a $60,000 payday after taking out the One Com Inglis Bonus Benchmark 65 Handicap over the mile at Gosford.
The victory marked the second time Red Excitement has taken out an Inglis bonus race taking his total career prize money to in excess of $150,000 from just 10 starts.
Heading into Sunday’s race, Red Excitement’s two previous wins had both come at less than 1100m. And Layt said the leggy bay’s transition from sprint hopeful to middle distance galloper had come around sooner than expected.
“I always thought 1500-1600m would be his go but I didn’t think he’d get there this early,” he said. “But he won well on the weekend and he’s on an upward spiral at the moment so he might make a very nice three-year-old middle distance horse.”
Red Excitement is perhaps the most promising horse to find a home in Layt’s stables since Karuta Queen but is yet to break through in a major metropolitan race.
While the gelding has notched up wins in Canberra and Gosford, he has run unplaced in the Black Opal Stakes, the Todman Stakes and the Heritage Stakes.
Layt said he was still undecided as to where Red Excitement will next turn out, he would likely set his stable star for a run at the $85,000 Inglis Bonus Benchmark 80 Handicap at Rosehill on November 24.
“It’s a 1500m benchmark race for three-year-olds and it’s worth a $100,000 bonus so he might be having a go at that,” he said. “I’m just taking things as they come with him at the moment.
“As a four-year-old he might go up in class but we’ll have to wait and see.”
Closer to home, Layt will likely have just one runner at Queanbeyan on Defence Force Cup Day this Sunday after opting to send in-form three-year-old Nuns on the Run to Canberra today.
Layt’s Nineveh’s Wish will jump in the Benchmark 65 (900m) in what will be the filly’s first run back from a three-month spell.