TYLER BAZE, FIRE WITH FIRE, WINNER: “I can do whatever I want with him, he’s very classy. It’s a confidence you get with horses. I know he’s going to be there when I ask him and he’s really shown me, from last year to this year, that he likes being out there on the lead. I thought I would be laying third today to Segway and Bright Thought, but it just didn’t work out that way. He relaxed so nice and I didn’t know what I was going to have left in the tank, but I knew he would give me something. When we started going around the far turn, he just started to go on by himself and I thought ‘good, he’s showing up and gonna run his race today!’ and when Quick Casablanca came up on our outside, it helped move him along even more. It’s so nice to ride a horse like him, who’s so honest.”
GARY STEVENS, SEGWAY, SECOND: “It was a tough beat.”
JOE TALAMO, QUICK CASABLANCA, THIRD: “I was further back than I wanted to be today. We got squeezed at the start and it was hard to catch them. I thought the added distance would help today, but that’s horse racing.”
NEIL DRYSDALE, FIRE WITH FIRE, WINNER: “Obviously, we discovered that he doesn’t need to be on the lead. His last two races, he’s kicked on very well. The race set up very well. When Quick Casablanca came at him, he went with him. Tyler (Baze) gave him a lovely ride, didn’t he? The horse runs for him.
“Of course (it has special significance winning a race named for Whittingham, for whom Drysdale was an assistant from 1970-74). Obviously, I’m delighted to win a race with Whittingham’s name attached to it.”
DAVID HEERENSPERGER, WINNING OWNER: “I was worried about the weight and so was Neil. Not only that, we had to go a little further today. My God, this horse is getting better with age. Tyler rode him perfectly.”
DAN LANDERS, ASSISTANT TO RON McANALLY, THIRD: “As far back as he was, I was happy he picked up that much ground.”
NOTES: Winning owner David Heerensperger is from Bellevue, WA.