Stakes Quotes

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October 14, 2013


MARTIN GARCIA, CAN THE MAN, WINNER: “They took the blinkers off today, which I think helped. I think it will be good for him to run without them. He took the lead today and was just waiting, waiting, waiting and was just playing with them. He felt that horse on the inside coming (Agapito Delgadillo on Hi Fashioned) and once they got close he took off again.

October 13, 2013


VICTOR ESPINOZA, BAJAN, WINNER: “It was a great trip, a lot of fun actually. She set up the way I wanted. She’s amazing when she runs on the dirt. The last couple of times, when she ran on synthetic, she was a little bit down. She really loves to run on the dirt. Later on, she might stretch out. I think she’s improving right now. I’ll have to keep riding her a little bit all the way to the wire so that I teach her for the future, so hopefully we can go long. She’s a young filly now.

October 12, 2013


COREY NAKATANI, QIAONA, WINNER: “That’s her, that’s her style of running (coming from off the pace). You try not to change it, or leave her too much to do. She came with her ‘race face’ on today and I knew she was ready. I kept her happy, and let her run. She was ‘spot-on’ today, she has that racing fight in her. I know that six and a half probably isn’t her best distance but the race set up for us and I knew she was going to put in a big kick.

October 6, 2013


COREY NAKATANI, AOTEAROA, WINNER: “I’ve asked Leonard (trainer, Powell) to ride the horse before, so I was stoked to get the opportunity. It’s kinda funny, I rode a horse that I loved at Del Mar and this horse blew right by us the day he broke his maiden (Aug. 4), so I knew this horse could really run. I rode his daddy (Good Journey) and I knew he’d love the grass. On paper, there was a lotta speed in the race, I thought, top to bottom.


RAFAEL BEJARANO, CLENOR, 7-10 FAVORITE, WINNER: “The speed was holding all day, so I didn’t want to be too far back. I tried to stay closer to the speed and get her comfortable. She didn’t show me the big kick that she normally does but she still ran well. I think from here on it will only be better for me because there will be more speed and more competition (in the races to come).”

MARTIN GARCIA, NESSO, SECOND: “This is the first time she’s had to be behind horses.

October 5, 2013


VICTOR ESPINOZA, TEDDY’S PROMISE, WINNER: “It was nice and easy today. I didn’t want to push or anything since the race (Breeders’ Cup Filly and Mare Sprint on Nov.2) is less than a month away. I want to win but I don’t want to hurt her, she’s a filly, so she’s more sensitive. Everything worked out well and it was a good race.”


RON ELLIS, TEDDY’S PROMISE, 17-10 FAVORITE, WINNER: “That (being outside) helps her a lot, but the freshening has really helped her a lot.


MIKE SMITH, POINTS OFFTHEBENCH, WINNER: “I thought he could win today. Thinking it and doing it are two different things, but I did think it. All we had left was to do it. He’s very talented. Maldonado (on Distinctiv Passion) looked like he was getting away from us and I wanted to try and time it with this horse because if you hit the front too soon, he pulls up a little. Then I looked up and he was going a whole lot easier than he was supposed to be. He has some turn of foot, and I hit the front too soon, but he still held on.

September 29, 2013


GARY STEVENS, INDY POINT, WINNER: “I can’t say that we had a plan. He’s a strong-willed horse and we kinda out-thought ourselves in the Arlington Million. Today, I just threw his head away from there and let him run free with a long rein.”

WHEN ASKED ABOUT RIDING FOUR STAKES WINNERS, THREE OF THEM GRADED, OVER THE WEEKEND: “My son (T.C.) won a race last night at Churchill and that was really special. My mom had a stroke last Monday though, and that’s really put everything in perspective.

September 28, 2013


ROSIE NAPRAVNIK, SECRET COMPASS, WINNER: “I was worried when I got to Gary’s (Stevens) horse that he would sprint away. He did for a little bit but my filly just kept running and she was all out sticking her nose out for the win. We’ll have to see if I’ll be riding her in the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies. I don’t know where Bob (Baffert) is going with her, so we’ll see.”



JULIEN LEPAROUX, TIZ FLIRTATIOUS, WINNER: “She finished strong. She had to fight because those other fillies did not stop. It was a good race for her and she got the Grade I she deserves. I think she has a great chance for the Breeders’ Cup. We knew she was really good but it was nice to see her handle the distance. I was a little concerned with Victor’s (Espinoza) horse (Vionnet).