By NYRA Press Staff — Mike Maker, winning trainer of Cross Border: “It looked like Todd’s horse [Blewitt, No. 6] and Cross Border were the speed of the race. He’s done well in the past stalking but on paper he looked like the class.
“I think his tactical speed helps him, but also being a New York-bred and the conditions he had really helped him last year. Plus, it was a four-horse field here and a drop in class can’t hurt.”
On a possible next start in the Grade 1, $500,000 Sword Dancer on August 29; a 1 ½-mile turf route that is a “Win and You’re In” qualifier for the Breeders’ Cup Turf:
“It could be against New York-breds or it could be the Sword Dancer but it will be something up here. He’s run very well up here last year and started off well here this year.”
On his good fifth in the Grade 1 Manhattan on June 4 at Belmont Park: “It looked like the race was void of speed but he’s run well at marathon distances up in class before, so it was no surprise.”
Jose Ortiz, winning jockey aboard Cross Border: “He can go for bigger things in the future. He did it pretty easy. I knew I had the 1-hole so I decided to take him back from the get-go and put him in that winning position. I knew Blewitt had some speed and the other horse outside me [The J Y, No. 2] had some speed, too. I didn’t want get into a bad position with him, I just wanted to ride him like he was much the best.
“It was pretty easy. He was much the best on paper. He’s been facing much better horses and was only beat one length in the [Grade 1] Manhattan.
“He’s a very kind horse to ride and does what you want him to do. Last time, we were on the lead, but we were going 50. I knew, on paper, Blewitt looked much faster than I was. His best races are sitting off anyway and I was more than happy to be able to sit off today in a small field.”
Winning margin: 6 1/4 lengths
Final time (1 1/16 miles, Mellon turf course): 1:41.75
Fractions: 25.48, 48.95, 1:12.49; 1:35.89
Full order of finish: 1-5-6-3