TYLER BAZE, SHEER PLEASURE, WINNER: “She kind of got lost out there. She was out there by herself and was so wide she almost didn’t see that horse to her inside. I angled her in and let her drift in pretty good. She got down and really took off that last hundred yards. I hit her twice and she really had a burst.
“I watched her last race, when she stumbled and Martin (Garcia) fell off. I watched her race at Los Alamitos and I’ve worked her a couple of times in the morning. I just wanted to be patient today. There was a ton of speed in the race and I didn’t know how she would take dirt in her face but really after the first eighth of a mile it didn’t bother her. It was just a matter of pulling the trigger at the right time; she’s really a nice filly.”
RAFAEL BEJARANO, JENNA’S FAITH, SIXTH: “My horse broke pretty sharp from the gate and I let her go. I didn’t even send my horse. I let her go a half-length behind the five (Bad Ju Ju). The other horse (second-place Grand Yodeler) was chasing me. I was really comfortable in the race. I’m really disappointed in the way she stopped. She had been training much better in the morning.”
PHILIP D’AMATO, SHEER PLEASURE, WINNER: “She did what she did last time, only this time with a jockey on her back. Tyler got her out there, swung her wide and she just launched. It was vindication for the last race. I think the longer, the better with this filly. She has a lot of upside to her. I didn’t know if we were going to get there. I know from training her that she gets stronger as the race gets longer. She was picking up steam and we nailed her at the very end.
OWNER BILLY KOCH, SHEER PLEASURE, WINNER: “We told Tyler there was a lot of speed and I was a little worried they weren’t going that fast. I saw they posted up 22.1 and I knew we had a lot of horse. He made one move where he went in between horses, right here as they turned for home, and I was like, ‘I know we have run.’ Once he got her in the clear, she just took off and came after that horse. She’s not the biggest filly in the world by any means, but she has such a big heart and she tries so hard and she has so much ability. That was what was so disappointing about the last race. When she dropped the rider at the start, she’s so smart; she galloped out 10 lengths, turned around and came back to the winner’s circle like she won the race.
“I’m so lucky to have a trainer like Phil D’Amato and partners like we have in this filly. They are fantastic. I get so much joy out of watching them, I don’t think about me.
“For a partnership that is trying to grow and bring new people into the sport, anytime you can have a race like this on a big day, it really draws attention to you. It’s all about winning, let’s be honest. When you win a race like this, it absolutely helps. We want to grow the sport. We want more people to come into the game and experience it and realize you don’t have to be Kaleem Shah to have a huge day. This is a massive day for us for a filly with a really, really bright future.”
EDDIE TRUMAN, GRAND YODELER, SECOND: “I was hoping she had it there at the end. We were solid, even opened up some and I was just hoping we could hang on. I think six and a half is maybe pushing it a little but it’s the first time we’ve run her so hey . . .
“I hope she can move forward off of this but even if she stays here, I’d be happy.”
NOTES: The winning owner is William Koch of Woodland Hills (Little red Feather Racing or RM Racing). Today’s on track attendance was 38,647.