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Friday, November 01, 2013


Quotes for the $2 million Breeders’ Cup Distaff


Richard Mandella (trainer, Beholder, 1st) – “We trained her this way (to run from off the pace.) We’ve just never had to use it before. She’s so naturally fast, you don’t have to train that into her and she’s made the lead so easily in many of her races. Today, she had to come from off of it and she did it – and boy do I love it. I’ve been lucky enough to have many good mares in my years of training, but this mare might have to be the best of all.”


Gary Stevens (jockey, Beholder, 1st) – “She was a little fractious going into the gate and a little anxious. I was afraid she might over-break but she settled and broke beautiful. This is the best race she’s ever run. I was hoping that Authenticity would carry the lead a little farther but (Beholder) moved up nice, went by her easy and the really opened up.

Bill Mott (trainer, Close Hatches, 2nd and Royal Delta, 4th) – “He (Mike Smith) tried to get her to go on a little more on the first turn and she didn’t.

Was your confidence as high this year, as last year? “She’d worked very well coming into the race. It’s hard to say. I thought she was doing well going into the race. She’d worked well.

“She’s had three hard campaigns. I’ve been very blessed to have a lot of good horses and it’s difficult to have more than two good campaigns with any horse. This mare has come back and won Grade I’s this year and I see no reason why she wouldn’t be champion older mare. She didn’t win the Breeders’ Cup, but she’s been good to us. She’s won two championships and maybe three, and won a couple of Breeders’ Cups. It’s not a bad career.

“Maybe it’s time. Maybe it’s time.”

Did the pace have anything to do with it? “The pace always has something to do with it. If they let us go on the lead all by ourselves, sure, that makes a difference.

“This year it looks like they sent Authenticity pretty good for a good reason, Maybe they accomplished what they needed to.

“I think Gary (jockey Stevens on the winner Beholder) had the plan to wait and make a little run. She did and his filly ran a tremendous race.

Mott on Close Hatches: “She ran very good. She was kind of under the radar there.

Joel Rosario (jockey, Close Hatches, 2nd) – “She ran big today. She broke well and put me in the race. I was tracking the leader (Authenticity) because it looked like she was going well. When I called on my filly at the 3/8th pole, I thought I had a good chance, but Gary’s horse (Beholder) had another gear.”

Todd Pletcher (trainer, Authenticity, 3rd and Princess of Sylmar, 6th) – “Authenticity ran her race. She ran well. She fought hard for third and I thought she ran a really good race.

“She (Princess of Sylmar) kind of stumbled leaving the starting gate and broke out awkwardly and kind of went down a little bit. She came away well last, not exactly where you want to be on this track for sure. He (jockey Javier Castellano) said she didn’t get over the track at all and struggled with the surface throughout.”

John Velazquez (jockey, Authenticity, 3rd) – “She ran a really good race. It kind of changed her style of running to go to the lead, but the lead was there so we took it.”

Mike Smith (jockey, Royal Delta, 4th) – “She didn’t have it today. No spark, man. Early on, I knew it. She usually takes the race to somebody, but not today. I thought when Beholder come up to her, she would pick it up, but she didn’t. I asked and I asked and nothing. I’m kind of dumbfounded”.

“I can’t be disappointed (in my day) and we’ve got a bunch of good ones tomorrow.”

Angel Castillo (jockey, Street Girl, 5th) – “We dropped back like we wanted to let the speed go on. Our filly tried all the way. She never gave up. Next year, she’ll be much better.”

Manny Azpurua (trainer, Street Girl, 5th) – “I believe the race for my filly was a good race. She ran against the best fillies in the country for the first time. I believe she is a better filly than what she showed today.”

Javier Castellano (jockey, Princess of Sylmar, 6th) – “She stumbled really bad at the gate. I blame the track. It’s all speed, speed, speed and unfair to come-from-behind horses. Unfortunatley, she didn’t handle the track at all. She was spinning her wheels. Usually at the half-mile pole, she pulls, and today she didn’t pull at all.”


First Breeders’ Cup winner for jockey Gary Stevens since War Chant in the 2000 Breeders’ Cup Mile. Of course, that includes more than seven years that Stevens was retired.



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