Quotes From Santa Ysabel Stakes at Santa Anita Saturday

(Midnight Bisou wins the Santa Ysabel Stakes at Santa Anita / Photo Courtesy of Santa Anita)

From the Media Team at Santa Anita:

MIKE SMITH, MIDNIGHT BISOU, WINNER: “This was a test of two turns and she passed it with an ‘A plus.’ I’m getting to know her more and more. I was a bit concerned warming up today. I thought she might be a little too keen early on but then she settled really nicely and she did everything better than I expected going into a two turn race. She’s getting better even faster than I thought she would.

“I didn’t really know what to expect today. I watched her first two races and she was so far back and then I rode her and I was much closer but I didn’t know what that race was going to look like. Of course, she ran honest, she ran very well that day. And then today, she was a bit aggressive warming up.

“I hoped she wasn’t going to be too aggressive and get hooked up early on into a head and head speed duel. She relaxed so well though going into that first turn and took everything so much better than expected. She won well within herself and I didn’t have to get after her at all. I just asked her with my hands at the top of the stretch to just inside the eighth pole but that was pretty much it.”




BILL SPAWR, MIDNIGHT BISOU, WINNER: “I wasn’t concerned about the distance. No matter where you put her, she’s going to try. She’s push button. We’re looking at the Santa Anita Oaks next (Grade I, $400,000, 1 1/16 miles on April 7).

“I thought she had ’em (when asked his thoughts about her going two turns for the first time, especially in the last half-mile). When you press on her and you ask her, she just kicks it (in) . . . She’s that good. It’s not the surface.”


JEFF BLOOM, CO-OWNER MIDNIGHT BISOU, WINNER: “Wow, she answered every question today.  She handled the off track, she handled two turns and she did it with a hand ride. We’ll check with Bill, but we plan to run in the Oaks here (Santa Anita, Grade I, at 1 1/16 miles April 7) and then the Kentucky Oaks (Grade I, 1 1/8 miles on May 4).


NOTES: The winning owners are Bloom Racing Stable LLC and Allen Racing LLC.

I thought he ran well. It was his first time stretching out. He handled it well, the fact that he had to settle off that horse [Promises Fulfilled]. They were dead set on being there. Luis (Saez) said, “We broke sharp. If I tried to go, we’d be going to go too fast.’ He said, ‘Let me just set off him.’ He thought he had him when he switched leads but the horse kept going. I think he got a little tired. He went from 5 ½ (furlongs) to 7 to now this [1 1/16 miles]. Hopefully, he can keep moving forward.”

Mark Hennig, trainer of Strike Power, runner-up in the FOY Stakes
  • Gene McLean

    Gene McLean

    Gene McLean began his professional career in 1977 as a sportswriter and columnist for the Lexington Herald-Leader in Lexington, Ky., and was recognized as one of the state’s best writers, winning the prestigious “Sportswriter of the Year” honor in 1985. Now the President and Publisher of The Pressbox, McLean sets ...

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