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ROBERT J. FRANKEL STAKES QUOTES
MIKE SMITH, CUSTOMER BASE, WINNER: “I knew the two outside horses would have speed so I could work out a good trip from that point unless I got buried, which could have happened. I thought the main horse to follow was Stormy Lucy, or our other horse (Gulsary) who was behind me so I parked in behind Stormy Lucy and didn’t move until I had to.
“I don’t want to sound cocky or anything but it felt like a Zenyatta-like photo finish where everyone thought it was so close, but yet I was confident. She was just hanging there, just waiting. She knew she had done enough, she was locked on. The only thing I could do from that point was not to mess it up, so I just stayed with her.
“It’s an incredible day. Bobby Frankel memorial stake . . . Bobby meant a lot to everyone in the industry. To see Humberto here in better health is just so special.”
ISAIAS ENRIQUEZ, STORMY LUCY, SECOND: “She had a perfect trip. I put her in a good spot, she was comfortable. It was a perfect, perfect trip. Down the lane, she took off. She was trying her eyeballs out. I just got beat by a better horse.”
GARY STEVENS, GULSARY, THIRD: “I had a great trip, I just followed the winner all the way.”
TOM PROCTOR, CUSTOMER BASE, WINNER, AND GULSARY, THIRD: “She’s run good all year. This was probably the right spot (for Customer Base). You’ve got to give the filly that ran second (credit). That was the horse I was scared of. Stormy Lucy’s a nice filly. I thought maybe Gary (Stevens on Gulsary) was kind of watching Customer Base a little bit and tried not to get in the way. But they both ran good.
“I tell you what; it’s a pleasure winning this race (and) seeing Humberto (Ascanio, Bobby Frankel’s long-time assistant who presented the winning trophy). You can say I enjoyed it. I kind of had it made yesterday and today with Eddie Logan (winning the Eddie Logan Stakes Saturday with Enterprising) and then this race. I always thought the most of Bobby Frankel.
“We started out, we didn’t like each other too much, then I got where I really thought a lot of him. He about put me out of the business, claiming everything I had my first year training, ‘cause I was running them where they could win.”
HUMBERTO ASCANIO, FORMER BOBBY FRANKEL ASSISTANT TRAINER (who presented the trophy): “I’m doing all right. My family and my kids are keeping me alive. I miss seeing you all here. I miss everyone here on the backside. I talk to a lot of people still. I don’t come out a lot, but I’m still watching. I’m not dead yet, I’m still kickin’!”
NOTES: The winning owner is Leonard Lavin of Ocala, FL, who races as Glen Hill Farm.