FLAVIEN PRAT, ENOLA GRAY, WINNER: “She’s just naturally fast. The first part, she’s not that quick but once I got to the first turn she got her stride and started to pick up the bit. Finally, on the backside she dropped it. I know she was going fast but she was comfortable. As soon as I asked her she picked it back up. She’s just talented.”
PHIL D’AMATO, TRAINER, ENOLA GRAY, WINNER: “She was ultra-impressive today. To set those kind of fractions and finish like she did…When she kicked in, I said ‘Wow, maybe this is what she wanted to do all along,’ and he still couldn’t pull her up on the backside! Tyler Baze has been asking me, ‘When are you gonna stretch her out?’ Tyler had to be at Monmouth Park today for more money so we were lucky to get Flavien and he gave her a great ride.”
NICK ALEXANDER, ENOLA GRAY, WINNER: “The last one down the hill, we got into a speed duel with three other horses and it’s hard to get her to relax. So, going a mile she can go a bit slower but she still has a big lead. And when she’s on a lead, you can’t catch her.
“When she won the Sunshine Millions (Filly & Mare Turf Sprint on Jan. 28 down the hill) we were in the Winner’s Circle and it seemed like forever and she wasn’t coming back, wasn’t coming back…I started to get worried and thought she was hurt. I turned around and she had gone almost all the way around the turf course again. She could have come all the way back, the other way, and made it even shorter. Her gallops out are always really, really strong so that’s another reason we felt confident that she would go two turns easily. It was just a matter of if the Drysdale (Juno, with Gary Stevens) horse would go with us and when she didn’t I thought, ‘It’s over.'”
NOTES: Winning owner/breeder Nick Alexander is from Los Angeles.
Photo caption: DAWN WELLS, WORLD FAMOUS AS MARY ANN ON TV’S GILLIGAN’S ISLAND, PRESENTS THE TROPHY TO WILSHIRE WINNERS JOCKEY FLAVIEN PRAT, OWNER/BREEDER NICK ALEXANDER AND TRAINER PHIL D’AMATO