Hover Craft tipped for 'Billy' Williams Memorial Cup

Horse Racing

Hover Craft tipped for 'Billy' Williams Memorial Cup

Observer staff reporter

Sunday, January 26, 2020

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Despite going up in age to 10, the Wayne DaCosta-conditioned bay gelding Hover Craft should report in good nick and could easily put away his younger rivals in the $1-million Allan “Billy” Williams Memorial Cup feature at Caymanas Park today.

The hard-knocking Hover Craft has been consistent throughout his 109-race career, holding 16 victories, 11 seconds and 22 third-place finishes. Three of those wins have come over today's distance of seven furlongs (1,400m). Based on back class, it should be an easy win for Hover Craft, but he is up against some young and fit rivals who are capable enough to take home this trophy race.

Atlantic Blue, Graydon, and El Profesor are expected to make life hard for the late-running Hover Craft in this Non-Restricted Overnight Allowance event for three-year-olds and upward.

Hover Craft last raced on January 1 in the Fan Appreciation Day Trophy over nine furlongs and 25 yards and was only beaten by two lengths by Crimson in a decent time of 1:56.2. Seven furlongs should not be an issue for Hover Craft as the He'sthereal Thing offspring is expected to get up in time for the win.

The race is the sixth of nine with a post time of 3:36 pm. First race is at 12:30 pm.

Recent winner Atlantic Blue steps up to compete at this level for the first time and should run well on his first attempt. Atlantic Blue had defeated Kalahari and Graydon over 6 furlongs (1,300m) on October 6 of last year in a good time of 1:19.3. That run alone suggested that he is heading in the right direction and should be on the premises when the race is being decided.

Although being beaten by his opponents on numerous occasions, Graydon is in a comfortable spot and could turn the tables once he is ready and focused. Graydon was disappointed behind Crimson and Hover Craft on last, finishing in eighth place by 20 lengths, gets the ideal trip here and is going to make his presence felt throughout.

El Profesor, every now and again, shows up with telling runs and today might well just be one of those days. El Profesor was outpaced on last when going six furlongs as he came home in sixth place behind God of Love and Prince Charles on December 21, 2019. El Profesor should enjoy this extended journey and with a more settled pace, he should come storming home in the end.

The others, K J Express, Dada's Nala, Blood Song and Lovers Strike all have done really well to reach this level, but they are going to find the main principal too hot to handle.

Ones to watch:
Race 1) Awesome Cat/Lady V/Lion of Judah
Race 2) Race Car/Whoshotthesheriff/Suasion
Race 3) Big Black Nation/Boss Izzy/Powerofgiving
Race 4) Adonis/Killer Bee/K D Flyer
Race 5) Versatile Vision/Primal Fear/Lord of Ajahlon
Race 6) Hover Craft/Atlantic Blue/El Profesor
Race 7) Kaka My Love/Gimmipalinka/Eledon’tplay
Race 8) Justsaytheword/Isinbayeva/Dynamax Cat
Race 9) Duke/Formal Fashion/Extruder

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