06/16/2012 8:50PM

Colonial Turf Cup: Turbo Compressor's speed lasts all the way

Kevin Coady/Coady Photography
Turbo Compressor wins the Colonial Turf Cup after controlling the pace under jockey Joe Bravo.

Trainer Todd Pletcher said going into Saturday night’s Colonial Turf Cup that he was going to let Turbo Compressor use his speed to take the field as far as he could.

Under Joe Bravo, Turbo Compressor’s speed was good enough to take the field all the way from gate to wire, taking the $500,000 Colonial Turf Cup by 1 1/4 lengths over Air Support. It was a three-quarters of a length back to Rahystrada, the 2011 Colonial Turf Cup winner, in third. He was followed in the order of finish by Smart Bid, Silver Tie Affair, Forte Dei Marmi, Casino Host, Humble and Hungry, Gourmet Dinner, Tilden Lane, and Atoned. Bold Hawk scratched.

The win was the sixth from 13 career starts for Turbo Compressor, a 4-year-old ridgling by Halo’s Image owned by P and G Stable and Off the Hook, LLC. It was his second win from three starts on turf.

Breaking from post 7, Turbo Compressor outran Humble and Hungry for the early lead, running an opening quarter in 24.34 seconds. Turbo Compressor galloped along with about a length advantage through a half-mile in 49.78 seconds and six furlongs in 1:14.34.

Coming to the top of the stretch, Turbo Compressor turned back Humble and Hungry and opened up again in the stretch, easily fending off a late run from Air Support, who won last year’s Virginia Derby over this course.

Turbo Compressor covered the 1 3/16 miles in 1:55.15 and returned $7 as the 5-2 favorite.

“That’s what we were hoping for, to get to walk the dog on the front end a little bit,” said Pletcher, who won the inaugural running of this race in 2005 with English Channel. “I thought the fractions were comfortable. He seemed like he was doing it in hand. It was just a matter if he was going to have something left to finish with and it certainly looked like he did.”

Turbo Compressor capped a pick four wager that returned $18,977.60 for a $1 wager. The winning sequence of 3-2-8-7 included Averil’s Ring ($34.20), Action Andy ($11.20), and Snowtop Mountain ($15.40).