VICTOR ESPINOZA, THE USUAL Q.T., WINNER: “He loves to run, he loves to win and he’s very game, that gives me a lot of confidence. I’ve been working really hard to get my business together for this meet and it’s great to get off to a good start like this on opening day.”


JAMES CASSIDY, THE USUAL Q.T., WINNER: “He hasn’t surprised me, the way he’s developed. HIs style is consistent. What can I tell you? He’s been fabulous. I’m leaning towards the Sunshine Millions now (for his next race; $300,000, 1 1/8 miles on turf at Gulfstream Park on Jan. 30). The San Marcos (Stakes, Grade II, 1 ¼ miles on turf on Jan 18) might come up too quick. Originally, I was going to run him in the San Marcos, but then we got to talking and decided to try him the last time (in 2009) against 3-year-olds and give him five weeks until the Sunshine Millions.”

NOTES: The winning owners are Don Van Kempen of Carlsbad, Michael Nentwig of Fremont, George Saadeh of San Diego, et al.