BRICE BLANC, UNION STRIKE, WINNER: When asked how he felt about getting his 1,000th win- “I tried not to think about it but it’s hard and it’s always in the back of your mind. When you’re one or two away and it’s not coming it can be frustrating.

“This filly keeps improving and I’m glad to be a part of the team. I’m grateful to be a part of all of it.

“Every time you win big races and you get a milestone victory it’s just so special. On top of that to get it for Mick Ruis, who has just been so supportive the last few months and that makes it even more special to be able to get that first stakes win for him.

“I was really excited when he asked me to work her a couple of mornings. I loved the change of plans when Mick decided to scratch her yesterday and run today. I actually think that filly yesterday would have been very tough to beat. (Union Strike) has been working so unbelievable and they have done such a great job with her.”


MICK RUIS, OWNER/TRAINER OF UNION STRIKE, WINNER: “It’s just another horse race to me. I’m just so proud of her. We finally got her 100 percent sound and training great. We knew she was a good filly and now we just have to go from here. We knew the field was tough but she had it today I guess.

“I still think she needs to stretch out; she wants to go longer. Her breeding says she can go long. In other races, she didn’t get tired.

“I just gave her plenty of time to let her shins heal. Some people said I was overly patient but I don’t think so and now we know we have a really nice filly.

“We’re looking at the Black Eyed Susan but we don’t know yet, we’ll have to see.

 “Brice is just such an honest, hard-working guy. He’s a great rider, lets us know what the horses need and it couldn’t have happened to a nicer guy and to win on this horse for us.”