TYLER BAZE, MOTOWN MEN, WINNER: “Going in to the far turn I had the rail and my horse was really running. When I grabbed him (approaching the furlong pole), I didn’t really know if he would get goin’ again. For a split second I kind of had to jump (Spirit Rules’) heels and then reached back and got them one more time.
“Ted has been amazing with this horse. The horse has been unbelievable training in the mornings and he shows up in the afternoon. I found out that he can take a little dirt in the face if he has to. He’s a spectacular horse to ride, he’s an honest horse. He wants to win. It’s been an awesome day for me.”
TED H. WEST, MOTOWN MEN, WINNER: “I don’t think he’s ever come from off the pace on the inside like that. I remember when we claimed him, somebody said, ‘He’s a good horse, but I think he’s a need-the-lead type.’ Not only was he not on the lead, he was down on the rail taking some dirt. I didn’t know how he’d respond, but I didn’t have to wait too long to see.
“It kind of looked to me like he’d be better on the dirt (when asked why he claimed him). He’d run some synthetic and turf and not many dirt . . . He was a Cal-bred and he runs good every time. We’ll probably give him a little time. This is three races in six weeks. He worried me a little bit today in the paddock because he got a bit hot and a little on the muscle, indicating he may be getting a little racy, so we’ll probably give him five or six weeks before his next race.”
CO-OWNER PHIL BONGIOVANNI, MOTOWN MEN, WINNER: “It’s the first stakes race our stable has won on its own. We won a stakes race down in Del Mar with some partners. This is our first stakes race with Ted (H. West) as well. We’ve been with him for three-four years. We support Ted 100 percent. For us, it’s more important to see him win than us. I’m just real happy for him. He claimed the horse, he fixed the horse and here we are.”
NOTES: The winning owner is Phil Bongiavanni of Yorba Linda who races as Gulliver Racing LLC.