DRAYDEN VAN DYKE, RING WEEKEND, WINNER: â€œIt feels amazing to win my first Grade I for a trainer like Graham Motion. Iâ€™m very blessed.
â€œI was following Mike Smith on Za Approval and I thought he would be a good guy to follow, I expected him to show more speed then he did today. I tried to be as patient as I could, I swung out and when I saw the eight horse, Summer Front I was far out so I tried to cut back in to let my horse see him and my horse just kicked on from there.
â€œI got to breeze Ring Weekend on the turf last week and he worked amazing, I never moved on him. He came back well and really fresh.
â€œItâ€™s my first Grade I, itâ€™s amazing. When I was galloping out I was smiling the biggest smile ever.â€
VICTOR ESPINOZA, SUMMER FRONT, SECOND: â€œHeâ€™s a really cool horse. Heâ€™s very nice to ride. He gives you everything he has. He ran a good race. I thought we got this one by the way he ran, but I think the other horse outran me today. I was surprised by the way the other horse beat me. I wait, I wait, I wait and then I said â€˜Itâ€™s time to go.â€™ And he goes. Heâ€™s quick out of there. The next time I looked back on the outside, the other horse (Ring Weekend) went by me like I was standing still.â€
RAFAEL BEJARANO, WINNING PRIZE: â€œHe broke really good. He went to the lead really easy, so I put him just behind to follow the speed, but I never had a chance to come out and get in the clear. This horse likes to run in the clear. I would have liked to have an outside position, but I tried to do my best. The horse hasnâ€™t run in eight months, but he still ran good.â€
ALICE CLAPHAM, ASSISTANT TO GRAHAM MOTION, RING WEEKEND, WINNER: â€œHe ran great. Drayden gave him a great ride and settled him nicely. It couldnâ€™t have worked out better. Heâ€™s grown up from last year. I hadnâ€™t seen him since then. Heâ€™s grown up a lot mentally and physically. Hopefully, weâ€™ll have a good, fun year with him.â€
NOTES: This is Drayden Van Dykeâ€™s first Grade I win. The winning owners are Vince and Theresa Viola of New York City (St. Elias Stable) or Terry Finley of Saratoga Springs, NY (West Point Thoroughbreds).
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