MIKE SMITH, SONGBIRD, WINNER: “She has such a high cruising speed, she has gears.
“You always worry about horses that are brilliant at two. Sometimes they won’t mature or grow anymore at three. You’re anxious to see what will happen.
“Favorite Trick was one that fooled me; he was brilliant as a two year old. He won all eight of his races at two but then didn’t win the biggest ones as a three year old. You’re anxious to get it over with and she seems to have improved. She seemed to up her game even more, especially mentally. She was very happy today and took it all in stride. I’m just blessed to be the one that has to make her carry the weight.”
JERRY HOLLENDORFER, SONGBIRD, WINNER: “It was nice to get that race out of the way. No matter how good your horse is, you’ll always be a little bit anxious.
“The fans are starting to like her.
“She broke good, she has speed. There’s no doubt in my mind that she could rate if she had to, but usually she doesn’t have to. If somebody did something funny, I think she could be flexible and adjust to that.
“I was so pleased to see her way out there and cruising along pretty easy. At least now we got a race in her and we can try to make some more plans. We want to run here at Santa Anita. What we do between now and the Santa Anita Oaks, I don’t know. If we do anything. We’ll think about it and try to do the right thing.”
RICK PORTER, OWNER FOX HILL FARMS, INC., SONGBIRD, WINNER: “It’s hard to explain the feeling. She just gives you goose bumps and you just wonder ‘How did I get this horse?’ I don’t think I’ve ever had one that’s so dominant and does things so easily. It would be nice to win the Kentucky Derby, but I’d like to do it with a nice colt . . . I don’t like the (Kentucky Derby) point system. We’d have to run in the Santa Anita Derby with her. I think it’d be great for your ego, but the smart move is to stay on the path we’re on to the (Kentucky) Oaks.”
NOTES: The winning owner is Rick Porter of Lexington, Ky., who races as Fox Hill Farms, Inc.