Stakes Quotes

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January 17, 2011

JOCKEY QUOTES

RAFAEL BEJARANO, BOURBON BAY, WINNER: “I was pretty comfortable the whole way, and I was in a great position. When I saw number 5 (Marlang) get sent a little bit I decided to follow him. I knew the number 5 (Marlang) was a very tough horse, that’s why I had to keep my horse close to him and make one big run in the last furlong. When I saw the favorite (Champ Pegasus) was let go from the three-eighth’s I thought that he (Joel Rosario) didn’t have as much horse as I had.

January 16, 2011

JOCKEY QUOTES

RAFAEL BEJARANO, ALWAYS A PRINCESS, WINNER: “I tried to be on the lead. I sent my horse really hard in the beginning. When I saw the No. 1 (Joe Talamo on Champagne d’Oro) rush his horse, I decided to put my horse right next to him. I didn’t want to stay behind him, but next to him, because my horse has a stronger kick. When I saw the No. 1 getting tired, I decided to give my horse a little breather before coming to the stretch. After that, I just let her run and she showed me a big kick. Last time I stayed too far back with her.

January 15, 2011

JOCKEY QUOTES

GARRETT GOMEZ, TAPIZAR, WINNER: “I thought I would be laying second. He was little bit fresher than I had anticipated him to be. He went ahead and settled down as soon as I let him make the lead. He put his ears up and kind of cruised around there. I felt like I was loaded. When I started to turn for home, the gate was parked on the outside and there was a lot of stuff going on. When I asked him to pick it up, I couldn’t quite get his focus going, but nothing ever got close enough to make him pay attention, either. Hopefully, he has many more gears.

JOCKEY QUOTES

PATRICK VALENZUELA, CALIFORNIA NECTAR, WINNER: “She broke really well and down the backside, I felt like Superman, because she felt like super girl—she was flying. When that filly (Zazu) came to her, my filly picked her head up and tried even harder. I don’t think she was ever going to get by us.”

TRAINER QUOTES

LEANDRO MORA, ASSISTANT TO DOUG O’NEILL, CALIFORNIA NECTAR, WINNER: “He (Patrick Valenzuela) was very motivated before we went to the track.

JOCKEY QUOTES

MIKE SMITH, INDIAN FIREWATER, WINNER: “Going into this race, we thought we’d let him run away from there and if we made the lead, fine. When I came out to the paddock, they told me Bob (Baffert) had called an audible, and there was a change in strategy--‘Put him on the lead.’ Down the backside, he was running easily and he was within himself and breathing really good. I wasn’t sure if we won it, because the other horse (Tweebster) was out so wide.”

RAFAEL BEJARANO, TWEEBSTER, SECOND: “I was pretty happy with the race.

January 9, 2011

JOCKEY QUOTES

RAFAEL BEJARANO, MAY DAY ROSE, WINNER: “She’s got a lot of natural speed and we made the lead pretty easy. I wanted to stay quiet on her and get her to relax early and she did. Bob (Baffert) said that he missed a work with her and she got a little tired the last part. I usually don’t do it when I know we’re going to win, but I hit her just a couple times to keep going.”

TRAINER QUOTES

BOB BAFFERT, MAY DAY ROSE, WINNER: “That’s her style. She wants to run on the lead and she got the job done.

January 8, 2011

JOCKEY QUOTES

JOE TALAMO, AGGIE ENGINEER, WINNER: “Right when we broke I kind of looked over just to see what was happening. I saw those two horses go, so right away I got him outside. Man, he ran like a real nice horse today. We won an allowance race at Hollywood Park where he sat off, so there was never really a doubt, and he really did it nice today. I either wanted to be on an easy lead, or have somebody go. I really didn’t want a speed duel at all. The tactics today were great. Two horses went to the lead and he stayed right off.

January 2, 2011

JOCKEY QUOTES

RAFAEL BEJARANO, UNZIP ME, WINNER: “After I saw the other speed horse scratch in the post parade I decided to be on the lead. This is the first time she has run after the Breeder’s Cup, so I just tried to get her to relax and stay comfortable with my horse. In the beginning I wanted to get the lead, but not let her go too fast. When I saw everybody getting close to me, I was just waiting for the top of the stretch to close the door. As soon as I got to the dirt, I let her go.

January 1, 2011

JOCKEY QUOTES

GARRETT GOMEZ, SPRING STYLE, WINNER: “I thought she (Harmonious) made one run at me going to the three-eighths pole. When I first turned for home, I took another peek out there, and she was having trouble getting to me. We went so slow, it’s hard to really come by a horse that’s trying to finish. Even though she’s a good finisher, when you come home quick like we did, it’s hard to pass horses. The last three-eighth’s of a mile we picked it up and came home really solid. It’s hard to make up ground when it’s like that.

JOCKEY QUOTES

GARRETT GOMEZ, DILEMMA, WINNER: “I really didn’t know what to expect from him. I tried to get him involved and get him to do something. I tried to stay as close with him as much as he was willing, without taking away from his run. He put himself in a decent spot, but he kind of worried me when we first crossed the dirt. When I got him outside, he came home well and finished really good. He’s seven, and hopefully coming into his prime now, but apparently he hasn’t lost a step.”

TRAINER QUOTES

TOM PROCTOR, DILEMMA, WINNER: “I thought he’d run good.