TIAGO PEREIRA, MARCKIE’S WATER, WINNER: “The last race he didn’t break very well for me. This time he broke well and he really relaxed after we passed the finish line the first time. We settled in behind horses and when it was time to go, we went outside and he really responded.”
FLAVIEN PRAT, UNITED, SECOND: Did the stumble crossing the dirt cost you a chance to win? “No, it happened very early in the race and we had a chance to recover. As you saw, he ran really good.”
BRICE BLANC, ASHLEYLUVSSUGAR, THIRD: “He ran a great race. He’s all racehorse, you can’t take anything away from him at his age. We were in a great position turning for home and he proved he can still run with these horses. Great effort.”
RICHARD BALTAS, MARKIE’S WATER, WINNER: “Wow. They were all lined up there and I was just hoping he was going to explode the last part. He kicked on like he was the best horse.”
BILLY KOSH, PARTNER OF LITTLE RED FEATHER RACING, MARCKIE’S WATER, WINNER: “I grew up idolizing Charlie Whittingham and to win a graded stake in his name with a Cal-bred is amazing. We thought when they turned for home that he was going to run last, he wasn’t firing, then all of a sudden he found daylight and he just went. That was an extremely impressive performance. We’ve told Tiago this horse likes to make a last run and he likes to be outside of horses. It was pretty amazing down the lane.
“Desormeaux took a hold on the favorite and that changed the whole complexion of the race. Kudos to Ritchie Baltas and his team and all of the Little Red Feather partners out there this means a lot it’s a Grade II, a big race especially for a Cal-bred. Tom McCrocklin is here who bred the horse and Frank Mermenstein is probably out there watching.
“Russian River is amazing, she was such a fun horse to watch and she’s produced now, See Smoke and Marckies Water who is now a graded stakes winner and Opus One who won a few weeks ago, it’s a great family.”
NOTES: The winning owners are Little Red Feather Racing & Norman Tavares.