$200,000 LEIGH ANN HOWARD CALIFORNIA CUP OAKS STAKES
$200,000 LEIGH ANN HOWARD CALIFORNIA CUP OAKS STAKES QUOTES
FRANK ALVARADO, GRAND SLAM SMILE, WINNER: “Steve(Specht) gave me a leg up and she jumped a little bit. I just landed on my butt and back, but there was no way I could take off. First time on the grass, we didn’t know if she would like it, she definitely liked it. The one thing about me and Steve, is we don’t like to be wide at the first turn. He told me to save ground. I saved ground right away, I just followed Frankie Dettori (Recalcitrant), a great rider on the grass.”
STEVE SPECHT, GRAND SLAM SMILE, WINNER: “I just want to say that to win this race at this point in time for Mr. and Mrs. Williams is very special. They’ve been with me a long time and with everything going on, to have a filly with this much talent…It’s really special.”
REGARDING ALVARDO BEING UNSEATED LEAVING THE PADDOCK: “If he would have been on a maiden at Golden Gate, he would have been at the doctor’s office and I would have been looking for another rider but not today. The ground is soft out there anyway. That was a great race, I am very proud of both of them. Frank rode her perfect. This filly is a real fighter, she won’t give in and throw in the towel. When they came up to challenge her she just kept going and drew off down the lane.”
NOTES: The winning owner/breeder is Mr. & Mrs. Larry D. Williams.