DAVID FLORES, BOB BLACK JACK, WINNER: “He’s been working very well and I’ve worked him every week. We have a good connection. He’s a great horse and we’ve had some great memories. Today, he missed the first couple jumps away from the gate, but he’s got so much natural speed, he made the lead right away and he relaxed really well. I was glad that we didn’t get too much pressure to the turn because I was concerned about the last quarter, but he was ready.”


JAMES KASPAROFF, BOB BLACK JACK, WINNER: “Of course (he felt comfortable seeing the first quarter in 23 seconds). That looked like it was going to be hard on the rest of them and probably a little easier for us. That was nice to see. I felt when I saw that, that things would probably go good for us today . . . I put a lot a lot of work into this horse in the mornings. He had a lot of foundation, and I figured with the long layoff that he’d probably run a little harder than he might if he was off three or four months. I was quietly confident, but when you haven’t run for a year and two months, you’ve got a built-in excuse right there. I would have been surprised if the horse (Ventana) ran past him (in the stretch). For a second there, it looked like maybe he had a shot at him, but we just had too much horse. You can’t let him go in :23 and :45 (and :58). You’re probably going to be chasing him all the way around the track.”
Asked what might be next: “We’re looking at some races back east, and obviously keeping some races in mind out here. The Potrero Grande (Handicap, Grade II, $150,000, 6 ½ furlongs on April 3) is a possibility; Dubai (Golden Shaheen on March 27) is a possibility; so is the Gulfstream Handicap on March 21. It’s a one-turn mile, but it’s all going to be based on how he comes out of the race.”

CARLA GAINES, DANCING IN SILKS, 7-5 FAVORITE, FIFTH: “He (Joel Rosario) said he just sort of flattened out from the quarter pole home, which he did.”

NOTES: The winning owners are Jeff Harmon of Laguna Niguel and Tim Kasparoff of Whittier.