MIKE SMITH, AMBITIOUS BREW, WINNER: “The field was short but tough. I really wasn’t looking around too much, it was just about getting comfortable. Marty had him ready to go today.
“I thought I had it at the wire. Victor’s horse is game though. When I stayed close, his horse really responded. I was kinda sending Richard’s Boy forward and thought, ‘Man, I need to get away from him.’
“When I didn’t have Bettys to my outside I was able to let my horse drift out. In doing so (Ambitious Brew) was running from the left hand a little and drifting out, getting further away from Richard’s Boy. I didn’t want to keep too close and have Richard’s Boy fight harder and hold us off but in getting away from another horse it doesn’t always make your horse fight as hard either. I was hoping it would work, not sure it did. Maybe I would have won by more if I wouldn’t have done that. For a minute, I didn’t think I was going to get by him.”
MARTY JONES, AMBITIOUS BREW, WINNER: “When they were going head and head like they were, I was thinking, “I hope he’s fit enough.’ Mike (Smith) knows where that wire’s at. A three-horse race is a real tactical race for the jockeys and Mike’s the best, but the horse is a special horse. From day one he acted like a special horse and he’s been a lot of fun the last four years.
“We freshened him after the Breeders’ Cup and he seems to run well fresh, so we’ll let him recover from this race, enjoy this, and try to maybe space his races out a little more this year. He’s getting a little older so maybe we’ll give him a little more time between races and pick our spots.”
OWNER/BREEDER PAMELA ZIEBARTH, WINNER: “This is amazing. We’ve had a really slow year so far, but this is a good way to get things going. He just tries every time he goes out there. You can always depend on him to give his all. This whole family tries, everything out of this mare (Kathwen, by Forest Wildcat) tries.”
NOTES: The winning owner/breeder is Pamela Ziebarth.