JOEL ROSARIO, TWIRLING CANDY, Winner: “He’s a real good horse. They were going too slow up front. I was waiting a little on the backside and he was a little farther behind than I thought he’d be. There were horses in front of me and I was between horses. They were going slow and I was able to get him in behind horses, so that was good. The rest of the riders knew my horse was the horse to beat and they were trying to keep him down in there. He was very relaxed without the blinkers. On the turn, I was taking my time with him getting him to the outside. He can do anything. When he sees horses in front of him he just goes and gets them.”
VICTOR ESPINOZA, SETSUKO, Second: “I think it was a good race for him. He’s been out for a little while and Richard will have this horse set up for the next one. My horse ran big, but the other horse is really good.”
JOHN SADLER, TWIRLING CANDY, Winner: “We took the blinkers off because we wanted to see him relax. He trains without the blinkers in the morning. It was a slow pace and Joel, you’ve got to give him a lot of credit, he just let him settle and didn’t get panicked. Once he got him out we knew he’d pick them up. He’s just a very very good horse, a very gifted horse. And he’s exciting, too. It was a little puzzling to see him that far back, but then they kind of wanted to box him in, you know, which is race riding. Joel just stayed nice and cool. Joel’s been on him every work and he settles so well in the morning, I didn’t think it would be a problem. I’m happy to win this one today and look down the road. The ($500,000 Hollywood ) Gold Cup (July 9) probably will be next.”
RICHARD MANDELLA, SETSUKO, Second: “The race was pretty much what we expected. Twirling Candy is a special horse when he’s on his game. And this also a very good horse that I have. We need to teach him to win. I think something spooked him in the winner’s circle (the only time he won).’’
Notes: The final time of 1:50 was the slowest in 30 runnings of the Californian at nine furlongs…Sadler’s most recent stakes win before the Californian was the Buena Vista with Cozi Rosie Feb. 21 at Santa Anita.
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