(Swiss Skydiver / Coady Photography & Courtesy of Churchill Downs)

From the Pimlico Media Team:

145th Preakness Quotes

Winning Trainer Kenny McPeek (Swiss Skydiver) – (From NBC Broadcast) “I’m just proud of Robby. We had to call him in at the last minute. He did a great job. I’m really proud of him, her, [owner] Peter Callahan – I wish he was here. This is just a real honor to be around a horse like this. This is a special moment.”
“It was a genius move by Robby coming up the fence. He saw a hole and went right at it. It felt like she took him there. If he waited, she would take him there. I think she should have won the Oaks too. Maybe if we stay inside, we win that one too, but it is what it is. She’s just really neat to be around. Robby and I have had a great week. We’ve been getting on her, walking her together, eating breakfast, lunch and dinner together. This is a lifetime experience for both of us and we hope we’re back.”
Winning Jockey Robby Albarado (Swiss Skydiver) – (From NBC broadcast) “I had an opportunity, a split second, to take advantage of the rail because Johnny was sitting off the fence there. I made a conscious decision on the backside. ‘It’s give or take now. Do I make that move now or do I wait to see if they come back to me?’ She’s been doing extremely well. Kenny’s been doing a great job. I’ve been around her all week. I figure she knows where she’s at, she’s in her surroundings. I said let me try and make this Jerry Bailey move and win.”
Bob Baffert (trainer, Authentic, 2nd; Thousand Words, 8th) – “I was hoping he was on the lead. But he got beat. He had the whole stretch to get by her. She ran a gallant race. He’s a free-running horse and likes to be on the lead. I saw he wasn’t on the lead and was struggling a little bit.”
“I thought I was going to be on the lead. [Jockey John Velazquez] said that it didn’t work out and he was rating him today. He doesn’t like rating. He wants to go fast.”
“That’s a good filly. He had every chance to get by her. He got beat. He just couldn’t get by her. She dug in. She’s tough.’
“We had to get the lead. He runs better on the lead. He likes to be out there running fast. When I saw 24 [seconds] that’s really slow for him. That’s how he won the Derby, get him running. But he said when he went to pick it up he didn’t have it today. That’s why I like to come back in two weeks.”
(On Thousand Words) “He was right there in a good spot, but he’s a funny horse. He’s in and out.”
John Velazquez (jockey, Authentic, 2nd) – “We had a good start, no trouble at all. In the first turn we got by Art Collector. By the backstretch, I tried to open up, but he just stood there and Swiss Skydiver came to him. I tried to get him rolling again, but he just stayed with that other horse from the half-mile pole to the wire.”
Jose D’Angelo (trainer, Jesus’ Team, 3rd) – “I feel very excited and I’m proud of my team and their work with Jesus’ Team. He’s really improved every day. I am very sure that he is going to be a great horse in the United States. I’m very happy for the result in this race, the Preakness Stakes, one of the most important races for 3-year-olds in this amazing country.”
“I don’t know really what our next race will be, but maybe the Breeders’ Cup, maybe go to Florida to prepare him for the Pegasus. The horse ran so good and he came back good to the barn.”
“I’m very, very proud of him. He’s like a kid, you know. Every day with him, we’re very proud.”
Jockey Jevian Toledo (Jesus’ Team, 3rd): “He ran big. He’s a really nice horse. I got a really nice trip, I can’t complain. He gave me everything he had. We had no excuse. The other two horses were just much the best, but he was running all the way to the wire. It’s exciting; third in the Preakness. He’s a nice horse, a beautiful horse. He tries all the time.”
Trainer Tommy Drury (Art Collector, 4th): “I thought he ran fine. He didn’t break quite as sharp as we hoped he would and that kind of had us playing catch-up a little bit. He was kind of in tight and it wasn’t the best trip; it’s not the trip we were hoping for. But we’ve got no excuse. The winner ran huge and we had our shot to get to them and just couldn’t do it.”
Brian Hernandez Jr. (Art Collector, 4th): “It wasn’t the trip we were hoping for. We were kind of pinned in between horses the whole way. They jumped early, they moved early and we tried to go with them and we just weren’t able to. They sprinted on from about the three and a half on, and they never came back to us. You’ve got to be proud of the horse. Just to get to this level and for him to be fourth today, it was a big effort off of eight weeks. It wasn’t an ideal deal coming into this race off eight weeks but it is what it is.”
Jockey Florent Geroux (Thousand Words, 8th): “I had a good trip. I broke on top and went right to the lead but at the half-mile [pole] I had no horse. The filly went outside of me and was the winner, but I was out of horse pretty much early on.”