Lean Mean Machine races into frame for the Group 1 JJ Atkins

Chris Waller sent out a warning last week that with better luck Lean Mean Machine would “show a better turn of foot” and his prediction was evident for all to see in Saturday’s Group 2 Sires’ Produce Stakes at Doomben.

In a race of high drama and with a controversial aftermath, Lean Mean Machine was able to overcome a wide barrier to post a good margin in the 1350m feature over stablemate Zousain, who finished just in front of dead-heaters Boomsara and Sizzling Ace.

With natural leader Adoradiva out of the way, Zousain took up the running, but Kerrin McEvoy said he failed to relax and was a sitting shot for stablemate Lean Mean Machine who made his run closer to the fence for Corey Brown.

Lean Mean Machine was right out of luck at the Gold Coast but got the breaks on Saturday.

“He’s the real deal this horse.

“When Craig Williams’ mount Mischievousmarilyn went by the wayside, it took my horse’s focus away for a bit,” jockey Corey Brown said. “It was weird. It was like he couldn’t work out what was going on. But the rest of the race worked out just perfect after that.’’

The quinella are sons of Widden stallion Zoustar who won this race in 2013.

Waller has the three favourites for the JJ Atkins, with The Autumn Sun winning at Randwick earlier in the day.

The trainer described Lean Mean Machine’s Ken Russell Memorial performance as “brave” and wasn’t surprised to see the $9.70 chance improve yesterday. “To me, walking around, he’s a 1400m-miler,” he said. “He’s a classic Guineas type of horse. It’s good to see him going into the JJ Atkins in winning form.

“Zousain just jumped too well and nothing wanted to cross him quickly. Kerrin tried to look after him and ride him conservatively but he didn’t have the stamina to stay when he was going so hard early.” – Nathan Exelby, The Sunday Mail.

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