With his charge Atomica displaying a preference for long-distance races, trainer Gary Subratie is targeting the Jamaica Cup as her next task, but running the chestnut filly in the Gold Cup is still a possibility.
The Gold Cup, the top handicap event on the local horse racing calendar, is set for Monday, October 16 going over 7 furlongs (1,400m), while the Jamaica Cup is run over 9 ½ furlongs (1,900m) in November.
Atomica won her fourth-consecutive race in an easy romp in the third running of the $1.75-million Menudo Trophy feature on Saturday, September 23, 2023.
Atomica, the reigning Horse of the Year, seized command down the backstretch and cantered home under hand riding to win the Graded Stakes/Open Allowance event for three-year-olds and upward by four lengths. Atomica finished the 10-furlong (2,000m) race in 2:08.2 (24.1 x 49.3 x 1:13.2 x 1:140.4).
"We are in Grade One now and so we are moving on one step at a time. We are going to look for a race in five weeks time and then see what happens. The Jamaica Cup is the main target but maybe the Gold Cup; we are not sure as yet," Subratie told the Jamaica Observer's The Supreme Racing Guide.
"She is maturing now. Atomica is four years old going on to five and so she is doing what she is supposed to be doing. I don't like to sprint her because she don't show me that sign that she wants to sprint. This is what she loves, to go long and do her thing.
"The plan was to relax her as best as possible, don't get caught up in the speed that they were going to send up there, and at the half-mile, make your move and see what happens," Subratie further said.
Atomica, ridden by champion jockey Dane Dawkins, got a good start and contested the early lead with Outbidder (Jerome Innis) going around the clubhouse turn and on to the main track.
Dawkins cranked up the notch aboard Atomica, and the Gary Subratie trainee took command of the race at the six-furlong (1,200m) mark. Atomica kept her run going nicely into the half-mile (800m) turn before breaking away from competitors at the top of the straight. Atomica pushed her way home, handily beating Miniature Man (Ramon Nepare) and D Head Cornerstone (Sadiki Blake), despite not being asked to do anything in deep stretch.