Mon | Feb 24, 2020

Atlantic Blue returns with a bang

Published:Monday | January 27, 2020 | 12:32 AMAinsley Walters/Gleaner Writer
HOVER CRAFT
HOVER CRAFT

ATLANTIC BLUE took over from speedy K J EXPRESS and lasted home by a neck from fast-finishing HOVER CRAFT on his return from a near four-month lay-up, to land the Allan E ‘Billy’ Williams Memorial yesterday.

KJ EXPRESS blazer was cracking backstretch splits but was never expected to last the seven-furlong trip, giving way to ATLANTIC BLUE, who stalked the pace ahead of GRAYDON, HOVER CRAFT, and EL PROFESOR, the 4-5 favourite.

In receipt of nearly 16lb from each of his pursuers, ATLANTIC BLUE reproduced his glowing workouts to sprint clear with apprentice Kiamann McGregor in the straight.

HOVER CRAFT, wound up by heavyweight rider Phillip Parchment, made a lunging run inside the last half-furlong to charge at ATLANTIC BLUE. However, McGregor kept his mount strong to the finish, denying HOVER CRAFT by a diminishing margin.

Trained by Fitznahum Williams, ATLANTIC BLUE, a Strikewhileitshot-Luvable, five-year-old, clocked 1:25.1 for his fifth career win.

Earlier, United States-bred RACE CAR, and local three-year-old GREEN GOLD RUSH recorded impressive debut victories on the nine-race card.

RACE CAR overcame a slow start with Dane Nelson to outfinish fellow American debutant WHOSHOTHESHERIFF at five and a half furlongs, clocking 1:06.0.

GREEN GOLD RUSH ran past DIAMOND LEAGUE in the straight, sprinting clear to clock 1:19.1 at six and a half furlongs with Linton Steadman.

Racing continues at Caymamas Park on Saturday.

ainsley.walters@gleanerjm.com