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SANTANA MILE STAKES QUOTES
VICTOR ESPINOZA, CANONIZE, WINNER: “Everything set up for me the way I wanted it to. We didn’t know what to expect of him since it’s his first time going long, but it set up very well. I had good position sitting behind the speed and I just saved a little bit for the end.”
When asked if a mile was the best distance for this horse:
“We’ve always thought about stretching this horse out. We gave him a couple races going short, and he just doesn’t have the speed to go six furlongs against the faster horses in there. But at a mile, I think it is one of the best distances for him. Whenever he goes easy in the beginning he will finish the race very well. If I push him too much in the beginning, which has happened before when I had to chase the speed in shorter races, but going a mile with a slower pace is easier for him. I think the best race for him is going a mile.”
MIKE SMITH, GLADDING, SECOND: “He ran a great race, he didn’t stop. He tried to come back.”
RON ELLIS, CANONIZE, WINNER: “It was a perfect trip, beautiful. They turned it into a two-horse race around the turn and I could tell my horse was going to run. He lowered his head and he was trying. I wanted to see if he could run a mile on this (dirt) track.
“There was no reason pedigree-wise why he wouldn’t get a mile, and he always relaxes nice. I think the natural dirt is what made a difference with him. He’s always run on synthetic. As soon as he’s gotten over here, he’s a totally changed horse.
“He’ll probably skip Hollywood Park (synthetic Cushion Track) and we’ll have to ship him to some dirt track because he just doesn’t handle the synthetics the way he does the natural dirt surface, so we might have to do a little bit of traveling. Luckily he’s a 6-year-old with a good temperament. He’ll handle it well.”
JOHN SADLER, GLADDING, SECOND: “They ran a fast final time and they finished fast. We’d have liked to have won it, but we’re happy.”
SAMANTHA SIEGEL, WINNING OWNER, WHEN ASKED ABOUT WINNING TWO STAKES OVER THE WEEKEND: “It’s been a blast. We actually won an allowance race earlier today at Gulfstream with Believe in A.P., which was very nice. We don’t have weekends like this very often so we need to enjoy this.”
NOTES: The winning owner is Samantha Siegel of Beverly Hills.