05/30/2004 11:00PM

Icy Atlantic rallies in Jersey Derby

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Bill Denver/EQUI-PHOTO
Icy Atlantic, Chuck Lopez up, wins the Grade 3, $100,000 Jersey Derby at Monmouth Park.

OCEANPORT, N.J. - Icy Atlantic rallied five wide on the final turn and pulled away from the pack in the lane to win the Grade 3, $100,000 Jersey Derby on Monday afternoon at Monmouth Park.

Chuck Lopez got his third win of the day as he guided Icy Atlantic to a 1 1/4-length victory in the 1 1/16-mile race for 3-year-olds. Icy Atlantic was timed in 1:44.51 over a rain-soaked turf course labeled good.

Icy Atlantic ($7.40), trained by Todd Pletcher, posted his third straight win and second in a row on the turf. It was the stakes debut for the son of Stormy Atlantic.

In a reversal of tactics, Nooligan shot to the front and set a slow pace. The half-mile time was only 48.83 seconds.

Lopez restrained Icy Atlantic behind the dawdling fractions.

"They walked the first half-mile," said Lopez. "He was dragging me around there. Per instructions, I decided it was better to cover him up and go from there. Once I tipped him out, he took off."

Commendation was second, with Grand Heritage third.

Master William got away poorly.

* The $60,000 Thomas J. Malley Stakes for fillies and mares was scheduled for five furlongs on turf but was shifted to the main track at the same distance. Hostility ($7.20), ridden by Luis Chavez, cruised to a front-running win over a good track in 56.93 seconds.