ALEX SOLIS, SPRING HOUSE, WINNER: “I learned quite a bit about him the last two times I rode him, but Julio has been working with him and in his last few works he’s figured out what he needed. He’s always had a lot of class. Today, he was on the bit the whole way and when that hole opened up in the stretch, he went through it like a bullet. I thought there would be more pace, but I ended up in a good position and so I had no complaints.”

GARRETT GOMEZ, ZAMBEZI SUN, 9-10 FAVORITE, SIXTH: “He was getting out the whole way with me. I was having trouble keeping him on the race track. Going around there the first time, he was OK, but by the time he got to the first turn, I had two hands on one rein and he was wanting to get out and just get rank all at the same time.”


JULIO CANANI, SPRING HOUSE, WINNER: “I put a figure eight on him (from his fourth-place finish in the San Marcos Stakes on Jan. 19). He had trouble breathing, and I was thinking of giving him an operation, but I changed my mind. I checked with three different veterinarians and I decided just to put a figure eight on him, and it worked out.”

Asked about the next race: “He’s staying here (for the Grade II, $150,000 San Luis Rey Handicap at 1 ½ miles on turf on March 21).”

NOTES: Spring House won this race last year, becoming the second back-to-back winner. Great Communicator won in 1988 and 1989. This was the 53rd running of the San Luis Obispo. Winning owner R.D. Hubbard is from Ruidoso, N.M.