Notes & Quotes From the G1 Queen Elizabeth II Challenge Cup: Cambier Parc

(Cambier Parc after winning the G1 QE II Challenge Cup / Photo Courtesy of Keeneland)

From the Keeneland Media Team:

Chad Brown (winning trainer of Cambier Parc)

“We talked about (the race strategy) in the Paddock. There wasn’t a lot of pace in the race. We know from her works – we’ve used her as a lead horse sometimes in her works, and she’s good that way. I gave (jockey John Velazquez) the option to go to the lead, and he took it. She really responded.

“My team did a great job preparing her here for this race. She’s had a long year, starting in a race at Gulfstream in the winter. I appreciate (owner) Larry Best giving me the opportunity with this horse. She’s a really well-bred, great-looking horse that anyone would love to have. I’m lucky to have her.”

On whether the race will mark her final start of the year

“Most likely. That’s what we talked about going into the race. Give her a real nice break (after this race). She’s got all the earmarks of a horse that’s going to have a great career at 4 and 5. We’ll leave that decision up to Larry, but that’s what we’re thinking.”

John Velazquez (winning rider)

“When she got to the lead, she relaxed really well. The strategy was – there was no pace – to use her going into the first turn. She relaxed in front. She had plenty to come running in the lane. Once she got to the lead, she relaxed and she opened up a length, a length and a half, and she decided to wait for the horses. I had to keep reminding her to keep running. I didn’t want to get surprised by another horse on the outside. I think if another horse got closer, she would have gone again.”

Mickael Barzalona (rider of runner-up Castle Lady [IRE])

“It was a perfect trip, racing just behind the winner. My filly is tough. She just got beat by better today. I was pleased with the way she ran. I look forward to next time. We didn’t want (to go) very fast (early). She races in France where we go more slow, so the fractions were not too good for us.”

Jose Ortiz (rider of third-place finisher Princesa Carolina)

“She broke good. Going into the turn, there were two horses – one on the inside, one on the outside – so I decided to take her back a bit. After that I backed up a lot on the backside. The filly relaxed well, taking a nice hold, but relaxed. Then she finished well. We were very happy. The other two (Cambier Parc and Castle Lady [IRE]) were better today.”

Kenny McPeek (trainer of Princesa Carolina)

“(I’m) really pleased. This is a good third out of her. We’re looking forward to getting her in the American Oaks (G1) later in the year. That’s a really good spot for her. She’s a really well-bred filly and always runs hard.”

Florent Geroux (rider of eighth-place finisher Magnetic Charm [GB])

“I had a great trip. She broke very sharp from the gate. We were going pretty slow up front. The trainer asked me to put her forward if I could and since she broke well I took the spot. I was in the right place, near the winner all the way. We went quick at the right moment. The winner had a better turn of foot than my filly. There was not much speed on paper.”

On riding for the Queen

“It’s a great experience to ride for her. I just wish I could have done better for her, I hope she watched it. I wish she would have won, but that’s the way it is sometimes.”

The horse broke well today,” Gaffalione said. “I had the horse inside, Dunph, going to the lead and then (Gun It) showed a little bit of speed. When I saw they were intent on going I just tried to get him back and got him to relax. He came back to me nicely and settled well down the backside. Got a little keen going into the far turn and wanted to move a little early. But I didn’t want to take too much away from him so I tried to sit as long as I could. He was waiting on horses down the lane but I kept him at task and there was plenty of horse there.”

“Mark (Casse, the trainer) and his team have done a great job,” Gaffalione said. “They’ve had a ton of confidence in this horse the whole way. It’s just an honor to be able to ride the horse. He’s just so professional, trains great and he’s a pleasure to be around.”

Tyler Gaffalione, Rode of War of Will to victory in the G2 Risen Star Stakes at the Fair Grounds

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