THE MALIBU STAKES

JOCKEY QUOTES

JOEL ROSARIO, TWIRLING CANDY, WINNER: “He’s a nice horse. I wanted to wait until the last minute to make my move, and he responded really well when I asked him. He’s starting to improve a little more; we’ll see what happens later on. The track is staying consistent, but when you’re on the best horse like Twirling Candy, it’s no surprise that he ran that fast.”

RUSSELL BAZE, SMILING TIGER, SECOND: “The horse did everything he could to win the race. He just ran a brilliant race for me. It’s just the track was about this much too long.”

TRAINER QUOTES

LARRY BENAVIDEZ, ASSISTANT TO JOHN SADLER, TWIRLING CANDY, WINNER:

“John (Sadler) made a million dollar move on Thursday by sending the three horses to Hollywood Park to breeze them. That might have helped in the cause. But we have three Grade I horses, so we were pretty confident going into today . . . At the half-mile pole, I was super-confident. (Asked what it’s like to win three graded stakes in row): “As you can tell, I lost my voice. I’m excited. It’s just a fabulous day.” Asked if he expected Twirling Candy to be closer to the pace going down the backstretch: “Probably the first quarter mile, yes, but Joel (Rosario) was loaded, so I wasn’t worried at all. This horse is a freak.”

NOTES: Sadler won a Santa Anita record three straight graded stakes races: the La Brea (Grade I, the Sir Beaufort (Grade III), and the Malibu (Grade I). On-track attendance was 34,268. The winning owner is Jenny Craig of the Craig Family Trust.

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