Alfred G. Vanderbilt (G1) Quotes

December 10, 2019

Linda Rice, winning trainer of Palace (No. 1): "I was a little concerned about the No. 1 post position. It's not ideal. It looked like he broke a step slow, so I was a little concerned at that point. It looked like the No. 5 horse, Happy My Way, was on a loose lead. Obviously, I was somewhat concerned, but this horse is such a competitor. He's got the heart of a lion. Cornelio [Velasquez] went after [Happy My Way] early, and he was able to run him down in the stretch. This horse really has a strong finish, and once he switched to his right lead and he was in reach of [Happy My Way] - he's such a tremendous competitor - I knew that he would get to him."

"I was concerned about the scratch of Bakken. There wasn't as much pace in the race as the True North. There was a lot of speed in the [True North], which caused me to run him with only a few breezes. Today there was a lack of speed in the race, but he's so tactical."

"I was just trying to get to today. I know the next spot at Saratoga is seven furlongs [Grade 1 Forego, August 30]. If he's training well into it, we still might give it a try, even though I think three-quarters is a better distance for him. We'll see how it turns out."

Cornelio Velasquez, winning rider of Palace (No. 1): "When I broke good, I stayed in behind [Happy My Way]. I wanted to wait for the last three-sixteenths, and have him come in the end. He came fast. He's a very good horse." Antonino Miuccio, winning owner of Palace (No. 1): "It feels good. I feel good for me and for the trainer, Linda Rice. I saw the horse coming and I was feeling good about him. He's a good horse."

Joe Orseno, trainer of beaten favorite and runner-up Happy My Way (No. 5): "Very happy. Very happy with that. I said all along, he needed a freshener. We were going to do it now. We gave him 2 1/2 months off [after] that last race. I did not lean on him very hard to get him ready for this because my big picture is November. I told [jockey] Joey [Bravo], 'Nurse him along as far as you can, but you've got to have some horse left.' Again, the grand scheme of things for me is November. He proves today he belongs. I'm ecstatic. Of course we'd like to win, but all the connections understand what we did and where we're at. I'm very happy with the horse."

Joe Bravo, jockey aboard runner-up and beaten favorite Happy My Way (No. 5):"He's fast. That's what he's always done and that's what he always shows. When you see 1:08 on this course, they're nice horses. He ran hard."

OTB Race Previews

Bet Belmont Stakes with OTB

OTB Accepts PayNearMe

Bet Horse Racing using PayNearMe
  • Quickly fund your OTB account with cash
  • Available at CVS, Family Dollar & 7-Eleven
  • Instant access to your money