MARTIN GARCIA, LIBERIAN FREIGHTER, Winner: “Mr. Neil (Drysdale) told me ‘if you make him relax, I think you will win.’ I knew that those other two (Tropic Storm and Colgan’s Chip) had a lot more speed than mine, so I just broke and let him settle. I had no intention of going to the lead. The main thing was to break well and then just let him be where he wanted to be. He ran with really good horses today, not like last time. Today it was a really tough race. He’s been improving a lot. He’s really game.”
BRICE BLANC, COLGAN’S CHIP, Second: “He was still running his butt off at the end. He’s such a cool horse. You can’t take too much hold of him, he’s kind of one-paced. He’s got a little bit of finish but he doesn’t have that real acceleration, so I didn’t want to set it up for the closers to come get me. He quickened nice for me at the top of the lane and he fought back, but that other horse just outran me late.”
RUSSELL BAZE, TROPIC STORM, Third: “I was more surprised it wasn’t Liberian Freighter up there pestering me instead of Colgan’s Chip. He ran very well, he tried hard all the way. Just a little too hard early. If he can tone it down and learn to relax just a little bit that first quarter mile or so, I think he would be unbeatable.’’
NEIL DRYSDALE, LIBERIAN FREIGHTER, Winner: “It set up well, and he relaxed well. It was set up with the two speed horses in front of him, and he ran a blinder. He ran very well. He’ll run back in the ($100,000 California Cup Mile on Oct. 30).
“He had a lovely trip, and he got a lovely ride. I’m delighted. My wife (Shawn) owns a piece of him, so I’m even happier.”
ALEX ELLIOTT (ASSISTANT TO EOIN HARTY), VICTOR’S CRY, 8-5 favorite, Fifth: “Eoin always had it in the back of his mind that 20 days was too quick to come back with a horse from Canada . … He shipped back great, there didn’t seem to be any side effects from that trip, and the horse trained great up to the race. He was the picture of health today.”
“I feel that the race was slightly falsely run in the fact that they broke (slowly) and then they really picked it up. And even when they went (the half mile in 45.78 seconds) he’d have loved to have been just up behind the winner, but he was caught in a pocket behind horses and had to pull out. It’s disappointing, but what can you do? It just didn’t set up. This horse is a top horse, but when you come from behind like that, you need a very even pace to run at. I just didn’t feel it was even today.”
“We thought it was a great opportunity (after the scratch of Sidney ’s Candy). It was never going to be a gimme, but we felt we had an opportunity. It happens. It’s racing.”
Notes: Liberian Freighter was the first California bred to win the Mile…The win was a record sixth for Drysdale…The win price of $46.40 was the largest in race history.
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