GARY STEVENS, BOOZER, WINNER: “He loves this turf course. He runs well off the hill even though he hasn’t run off it for a while. Mark had him sharp today and he broke real sharp. I just followed Mike (Smith, aboard Forest Chatter) the whole way down the hill and when we crossed the dirt, I pushed the button and he just ground it out. He’s a lot of fun to ride, he’s a true professional.
“I knew when I got up to the top of the hill before the race that he was sharp. He was on his toes; he was dancin’ and prancin’ around. He went into the gate aggressive. I told Mark this morning that I was going to try and put him on the lead, or close to it and he just smiled at me.”
FLAVIEN PRAT, RICHARD’S BOY, SECOND: “I had a good race today. Last time I rode him, I wasn’t on the lead and I think being on the lead today made all the difference. He’s so much better on the turf, he did a great job. It’s always sad to be beat by so little, but I don’t have any excuses.”
MARK GLATT, BOOZER, WINNER: “He comes with his game every time. Sometimes they’re a little bit better than him and sometimes we’re running him at a distance that he’s not at his best, because he’s a good Cal-bred, and to run against Cal-bred company, sometimes the distances fluctuate a little bit.
“I think a mile, a mile and a sixteenth are his best distances, a mile and an eighth is a hair too far, and he runs good down the hill. I wasn’t really concerned about him shortening up. He’s pretty versatile.”
AL AND SANDEE KIRKWOOD, OWNERS, BOOZER, WINNER: “He’s definitely paid his way for us. We’ve had a lot of fun with him. He’s always competitive. He’s hardly ever off the board. He won a hundred -grander coming down the hill before (California Flag Handicap, Oct. 18, 2014). We ran him a mile-and-an-eighth last time, he ran third behind some real good horses, so we decided he had a little extra wind for this race and he sure did. Gary did a good job riding him and Mark Glatt’s done a good job training him.”
NOTES: Winning owners Al and Sandee Kirkwood are from Ridgefield, Washington. They have been in racing since 1988.