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SANTA ANITA SPRINT CHAMPIONSHIP STAKES QUOTES

 

JOCKEY QUOTES

 

OLIVIER DOLEUZE, RICH TAPESTRY, WINNER: “He’s such a nice horse. He traveled well and he did what we asked of him today. He’s going to improve from this race so he’ll absolutely be ready for the Breeders’ Cup.”

 

RAFAEL BEJARANO, GOLDENCENTS, SECOND: “We broke really well but not as fast as he used to when he was running sprints consistently. I just let him go and decided to tuck in behind the speed and follow. When we came to the stretch I felt I had a lot of horse so I let him go. He opened up but when he got a length or two in front, for some reason he put his ears up and pulled up a little; he’s never done that before. That’s why we got caught. When Rich Tapestry came to us Goldencents looked at him and seemed scared for a minute; he didn’t fight back.

“It was the same race he ran last year right before he won the Breeders’ Cup (Dirt) Mile, so he’s ready. He’s definitely going on to the Breeders’ Cup.”

 

MARTIN GARCIA, SECRET CIRCLE, THIRD: “He probably needed this race. Hopefully, he’ll get a lot out of it. They went really fast.”

 

TRAINER QUOTES

 

MICHAEL CHANG, RICH TAPESTRY, WINNER: “This horse is a lovely horse. I’m very happy to have him. He’s easy to train, he’s got a big heart. He won a race in Ireland, he won a race in Hong Kong, he won a race in Dubai, and now he’s won a race in America.”

Asked about not having raced since April: “I could not find a decent race for him in Hong Kong. In Hong Kong, the season ends in the middle of July and the new season doesn’t start until September. He’s so good on the dirt, so I took a chance to try my luck here today.

Asked about his stretch run: “I know in American racing style, they go very fast, always very fast in the first quarter, and the second quarter . . . and in the home straight, they all slow down. So I just asked my jockey, ‘Give the horse a chance. Try to make him finish. You cannot go with them in the early stage.

“The horse travels well. It never affects him. He’s been here (at trainer Leonard Powell’s barn) three or four days; he’s like an American horse already. He settled in extremely well.

“The horse will stay with Leonard Powell the Breeders’ Cup. I fly back to Hong Kong tonight. I still have 50 horses there. I’ll be back here a week before the Breeders’ Cup.”

Asked if the horse had ever raced under such hot conditions (it was 104 degrees at Santa Anita): “In my country, it’s hotter than here. It’s very hot and humid.”

 

DOUG O’NEILL, GOLDENCENTS, SECOND: “I’ll check with (owners) Josh (Kaplan) and Glenn (Sorgenstein), but we’re 90 percent plus to run in the Dirt Mile,” said O’Neill who was uncertain as to who would be the horses’ trainer of record for the Breeders’ Cup as a result of a medication violation in New York in June of 2013.