SANTIAGO GONZALEZ, PRIZE EXHIBIT, WINNER: “She’s a superior horse. She runs in better races than these other horses regularly and she showed her class today.
“She has a lot of speed. I can wait and wait with her and I know she can still get there with her speed.”
KENT DESORMEAUX, VELVET MESQUITE, SECOND: “She’s not fond of soft ground. I think she ran her eyeballs out but she got beat a nose in a situation she doesn’t care to be in. Not to mention, she’s been off a while so I don’t think it would have mattered as much if she was racing with one under her belt.
“Her future is very bright. She’s coming back from a laceration on her hind end as well and that always causes concern. You can wonder if she’ll be the same. Well, she’s the same.”
JULIEN LEPAROUX, AGELESS, THIRD: “No real excuses. The course is the same for everybody. She had a little layoff, but she ran her race. It looks like she came back good and hopefully, she’ll be good for the rest of the year.”
JAMES CASSIDY, PRIZE EXHIBIT, WINNER: “I didn’t think she’d have any problem (coming down the hill for the first time) unless she started idling trying to figure out what the heck this is all about, which she has a tendency to do.
“But being that he (Santiago Gonzalez) had her surrounded, she didn’t have any time to think about that, so that was a good thing. I was a little upset we were that close, but when it opened for her, he rode her perfect, and she’s a hard horse to ride. You could see down the lane she was out there in the clear and kind of looking around, so she can be difficult, but she got it done.
“Gonzalez is really a good rider. If he keeps finding his skills, he’ll be one of the best riders here, if he isn’t close to that already.”
ARNAUD DELACOUR, AGELESS, THIRD: “I thought everything went pretty good. She had a good trip and she was finishing, so we’re pretty happy with the race she ran.”
NOTES: The winning owner is Deron Pearson of Valencia who campaigns as DP Racing. Cassidy indicated the Grade II Buena Vista Stakes at one mile on turf Feb. 20 would be next.