Sunday, September 28, 2008
Quotes from Sept. 27th
ANCIENT TITLE STAKES QUOTES
TYLER BAZE, COST OF FREEDOM, WINNER: “I’ve won four times on this horse. We liked the outside post today, but this horse can do anything. He can go to the front and he can come from way out of it. Street Boss was the horse to beat and I wanted to get the jump on him. At the 5/16 pole, I looked behind me and decided to go and it worked out perfect. He’s a very classy, very nice horse.”
DAVID FLORES, STREET BOSS, 9-10 FAVORITE, SECOND: “A good race for him--a good Breeders’ Cup prep. I would have liked to have won it, but second is next best. What are you going to do. The race set up right; I was happy with that. They ran fast early and I thought they’d come back to me. But they didn’t. Still, a good race for him.”
JOHN SADLER, COST OF FREEDOM, WINNER: “It was a gutsy claim. Mr. (Gary) Barber liked his race record. I was a little concerned that he hadn’t run that many times, but he was always very good. He was always right there. He’s a horse that likes synthetics. He won the day we claimed him, and then we ran him back, and he set a track record. My thought was just to give him plenty of time.
“If you give him that spacing back – we had a lot of time between races – that helps your chances (for the Breeders’ Cup). I was worried about him bouncing. Obviously, we held him up.
“That’s another huge effort. Thirty days (between now and the Breeders’ Cup) looks a little close at this point, but he should be fine.”
CLIFF SISE, IDIOT PROOF: “I have no idea (where we’ll go from here). I have to talk to the owner. I don’t think he was that keen on this stuff.”
MIKE MITCHELL, DELTA STORM, FOURTH: “That’s a good race for him. I’ll have to talk to the owner, Mike House, and see about that six and a half down the hill for Breeders’ Cup (Breeders’ Cup Sprint). I don’t know if we can get eligible for that--points or something. But maybe we’ll see about that one.”
NOTES: Winning owners Gary and Cecil Barber reside in Los Angeles.
LADY’S SECRET STAKES QUOTES
MIKE SMITH, ZENYATTA, WINNER: “I just can’t describe her, to be honest. She leaves me speechless. She just seems to be sent from heaven, man. She does things horses aren’t supposed to do. Those other mares picked it up. Not only did she pick it up, but she did it like, ‘Okay, let’s go.’ She pulled up and gathered herself up real quick. No, I didn’t warm her up. I can’t. She’d be on her toes too much. She warms herself up. She kind of warms up in place.
“Without a doubt, she would be a deserving Horse of the Year if things continue to go well. She’s flawless. I mean, what else can you do beyond flawless. Her race today was incredible. I would say her best two races probably are this and the Apple Blossom at Oaklawn. But this one, she really was within herself. She went by them like . . .well, the last quarter of a mile, she was just galloping.
“I rode a mare (Azeri in 2002) who became Horse of the Year. Honestly, in their own right, she was a champion as is this one. No one beat either one of them. But this one, I wouldn’t necessarily even compare her to fillies. I’m really starting to think she might be the best horse I’ve ever ridden.”
GARRETT GOMEZ, HYSTERICALADY, SECOND: “She ran really good. She’s been running on dirt lately. This was her first race back on synthetic in a while. The trip over the racetrack should set her up for the Breeders’ Cup. She had a soft trip on the lead early. Maybe it would have been better to go a little faster because when she went to sprinting she kind of misplaced her feet a little bit.
“Zenyatta is just amazing. You can’t say anything negative about her. She just keeps winning. She’s a huge thing. She just kind of gallops around there and keeps galloping at a quick pace. I watched Mike Smith warm her up, and he didn’t. He walked her back from the sixteenth or eighth pole and they just stood there. She seems to have some quirks about her. She’s a funny thing, but she sure runs fast.”
JOHN SHIRREFFS, ZENYATTA, WINNER: “I was hoping I wouldn’t have to beat Hystericalady to the Breeders’ Cup. She’s an awfully tough filly. But my filly is awfully talented, and talent overcomes a lot of stuff
. . . It was a little hot, but she seems OK. She never got mad. If everything goes well, she’ll go back to Hollywood and train up to the Ladies’ Classic (Oct. 24). That’s our plan.”
JERRY HOLLENDORFER, HYSTERICALADY, SECOND: “I thought she got the fractions that she wanted. We got away at the top of the lane like we thought we would, and then we just couldn’t hold off Zenyatta. We’re going to run in the Breeders’ Cup. Garrett said he would ride. We’ll do our best.”
(How good is Zenyatta?)
“Well, she’s undefeated (laughs).
“We’re still going forward with our plan. This was a step-up race for us, and sometimes we have to step up and run. Right now, it looks like the filly (Zenyatta) is the very best. But I don’t take anything away from my horse. I really love her. I think she ran really well, and I think she’ll make a good account of herself in the Breeders’ Cup.”
NOTES: The winning owners, Jerry and Ann Moss, reside in Beverly Hills.
CLEMENT L. HIRSH TURF CHAMPIONSHIP STAKES QUOTES
JOHN VELAZQUEZ, RED GIANT, WINNER: “I knew they were going pretty fast in front of me and I didn’t want to move too soon. Down the backside, I just decided to go with Frankel’s horse (Out of Control). The conditions today were completely different from Saratoga (Aug. 3). The turf there was soft and today it’s really firm. I was a little concerned about it, but he handled it fine.”
TYLER BAZE, SPRING HOUSE, FAVORITE: “They were going too fast—they never slowed down. They were at :45 for the half; I was sitting back thinking I was sitting perfect. They never came back to me like I thought they would. He didn’t run bad—I thought he ran good.
“I was happy with him. We had a perfect trip -- they just never slowed down. The whole way down the backstretch, I was thinking ‘All I have to do is ask him.’ When I asked him, he was running, but they ran away from him. They were rolling – they were going fast.”
MIKE McCARTHY, ASSISTANT TO TODD PLETCHER, RED GIANT, WINNER: “I wasn’t concerned (about being that far back early), not with those kind of fast fractions. He was the class of the race. I imagine he’ll go on (to the Breeders’ Cup Turf) if he comes out of this race all right. I imagine that’s the plan . . . He’s a very easy horse to be around and a very easy horse to train. He almost trains himself
HUMBERTO ASCANIO, ASSISTANT TO BOBBY FRANKEL, OUT OF CONTROL, SECOND “He ran good; he ran really good. We couldn’t want much more than that. Breeders’ Cup? Don’t know. We’ll have to talk to Bobby (Frankel) about that.”
JULIO CANANI, SPRING HOUSE, FOURTH: “I’m not too happy with that ride. I told him to put him forward; to put him right up near the front. So he chokes him down; he doesn’t let him run. He can’t win the race running like that. But the horse is OK. We’ll see. I think now I’ll run him in that mile and a half (Breeders’ Cup Marathon) on Breeders’ Cup day.”
NOTES: The winning time of 1:57.16 is a world record for 11/4 miles. The previous mark of 1:57.40 was set by Double Discount in the Carleton F. Burke Handicap at Oak Tree on Oct. 9, 1977. The winning owner is John Fort of Camden, S.C., who races as Peachtree Stable. McCarthy said Pletcher was in New York today.
OAK LEAF STAKES QUOTES
MIKE SMITH, STARDOM BOUND, WINNER: “She’s my baby Zenyatta. They both lag back and just gallop along and they start picking up horses and they’re just galloping. Turning for home, I knew I was losing ground by swinging out, but I also picked up a lot of momentum, and she finished up great. When we pulled up, she took one big breath and she was ready to come back. I want to give a lot of credit today to John Lopez, who handled me in the gate. This filly has a tendency to ‘ball up’ a little bit in there, and today John decided to kind of stretch her neck out. I was a little concerned she might stumble, but she broke great.”
VICTOR ESPINOZA, PALACIO DE AMOR, SECOND: “She ran good. She always runs good. She’s a real hard trier and she tried again today. If I could have gone a little slower to the half -- :47 and change-- maybe I can take on that winner. I saw her coming, but what was I going to do? But my filly ran great. That’s all there is to it.”
MARTIN PEDROZA, ORO BLANCO, THIRD: “I ran into a wall of tiring horses and I had to really grab her. Two horses came together right in front of me and I had to take a big hold. For a second there I thought I was just lucky to stay on. She ran well, and if I don’t have to stop with her, I’m going to be second for sure.”
CHRISTOPHER PAASCH, STARDOM BOUND, WINNER: Asked if he had any concern when she was far back saving ground down the backstretch: “I had no concern. Mike (Smith) is such a professional, I told Mike, ‘How am I going to tell you what to do with this filly? You ride her how you need to.’”
Asked if this is the best horse he’s ever trained: “I think I’ve made that rather public. This is very rewarding, very rewarding. What a difference 32, 33 hours make, from 8:30 yesterday morning and the incident that happened here in front of everyone, to winning this race, what a feeling. She was kicked on the inside of her right hind leg by an outrider’s pony after she galloped . . . We’re very happy now. She did everything well. We brought her over here on Wednesday to get her over the surface and school her, and she seemed to handle everything well, so we’re just thrilled.”
NOTES: Paasch said he has been training privately for winning owner Charles Cono for 10 years. Cono and his wife, Karen, live in La Mesa. He is an 84-year-old real estate investor, and “goes to work every day.”
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