GARRETT GOMEZ, MORE CHOCOLATE, WINNER: “I just let her relax and wasn’t in a hurry with her. She was relaxed going into the first turn then jumped up in the bridle on me; I didn’t want to get into a wrestling match with her so I let her be. She settled into a good rhythm going down the backside. I haven’t had a horse turn for home like she did for me in a long time. She was looking around and in a high cruise control. Being her first time on dirt, my main concern was that when I told her to go she could get a hold of the track and was able to do what I was asking of her.”

(In response to if he and Martin Pedroza, on Willa B Awesome, had any discussion about pace during the race once he found himself closer to the lead than planned?)

“No. In all actuality I didn’t mind being up there a length or two off of him. I was disappointed when she jumped up in the bridle with me so early on in the race. She’s a work in progress. We know she has a lot of talent.”

(In response to if More Chocolate will have any trouble with the 1 1/8 Santa Margarita)

“I think she’ll be fine. She’s a big, big filly and I don’t think that distance will be a problem.”

RAFAEL BEJARANO, BOOK REVIEW, SECOND: “I wasn’t too far back, but I didn’t want to move too early. She finished really strong.”


JOHN SADLER, MORE CHOCOLATE, WINNER: “We wanted to try her on the dirt (after all seven career starts on grass). It’s the last chance to run her with her own age group, this was the nice thing about it, the 4-year-old series. This race looked like it was coming up a good spot with a small field. We thought we might be back a little further, but with a 48 half, I felt good with where we were sitting.”

“She had a perfect trip, slow pace, very nice. We’re going to look at the Santa Margarita, that’s for sure (for her next race, Grade I, $300,000, 1 1/8 miles for fillies & mares, 4 years old and up on March 16).”

JERRY HOLLENDORFER, LADY OF FIFTY, 6-5 FAVORITE, FOURTH: (In response to if the jockey, Martin Garcia, had any explanation on why she didn’t fire today): “No.”

(In response to his reaction to the race)

“I was very surprised at how she ran.”

(In response to if the filly seemed to come out of the race in good health)


NOTES: The winning owner is Michael Talla of Westwood.