GREG Childs earned his Hongkong spurs with a polished display on Saboatan, winner of yesterday's featured ATV Cup at Sha Tin. Saboatan, a gelding trained by Chris Cheung Ting-pong, won by a short head from old favourite Quicken Away after a pulsating duel virtually the whole of the way up the straight. There was a further length back to Saboatan's better-fancied stablemate Optic Empire, who finished a luckless third. Childs, the New Zealand-born champion of Victoria, beamed: ''I'd like to think that I showed everyone what I can do today. Maybe the last couple of meetings and this win can be counted as my Hongkong apprenticeship. ''I'm enjoying myself and getting plenty of support though there weren't too many of my rides that had really good chances today. ''That is only to be expected. You have to start from the bottom and work up when you are the new guy in town. ''Now I hope that I will start to pick up some better quality rides.'' Childs brought Saboatan from off the pace to win with a well-timed challenge. Childs has a reputation for being an excellent rider from off the pace, but he says: ''I'll ride them from any position from which they can win - back, middle or from in front.'' Quicken Away's performance scotched any doubts that he had lost his form. A two-time Horse Of The Year, he will now earn automatic selection into the $3.5 million International Bowl on April 18 where he will be joined by his better fancied stablemate, Helene Star. ''I'm both up and down,'' reflected Quicken Away's trainer Patrick Biancone. ''I'm delighted he went very well but disappointed he did not win. I really wanted to win this race and had trained him to do so.'' The Johnny Marshall-ridden Optic Empire was without doubt the hard luck story of the race. Optic Empire lost several lengths in scrimmaging at the 1,000-metre marker, leading Marshall to say: ''Without the interference we would have gone close to winning. We would have been right there at the finish. But that's how things can go in this game. Sometimes you need a bit of luck.'' Tony Cruz reported no hard-luck stories on Brian Kan Ping-chee's Happy Guy, who started favourite and ran home fourth. ''That's probably about as good as he is,'' said the champion jockey elect. Cruz had earlier scored on Wong Tang-ping's Super Power in the fourth event. Super Power has gone down in the notebook on many occasions and was breaking through for an overdue win. He won going away from Ivan Allan's Jet Speed, given a superb ride by Basil Marcus who was beaten by a better horse. Cruz said: ''I wouldn't get too carried away about Super Power. He is a big, awkward, gangly individual who is a very hard ride. ''He's probably no better than he has shown today and I don't think he will improve over farther. The mile is probably his distance. He would probably tire over anything more.'' The booking of Nigel Tiley for Lam Hung-fie's Saint Dragon Hill brought about an improved run from the four-year-old. He was only a neck behind Jet Speed in third, having been trapped wide for much of the way from his outside draw. Neville Begg's horses are now running in much better form. He moved to double figures for the seasonwhen his enigmatic Green Peace held American Lettuce in a poor Class Six sixth event. ''Go on you good thing,'' joked Begg after the win, mindful of what a problem horse Green Peace has been over the last few seasons. The son of Japan Cup winner Jupiter Island should really be running over trips in excess of a mile. But he is a weak customer who refuses to settle. Yesterday's 1,200 metres is about his limit. There were not too many good runs behind Green Peace in this distinctly modest affair, save for the performance of Lawrie Fownes' Smart Boy. He could make his presence felt in a similar event when tried over a mile.