Big Brown Proves His Greatness in Preakness Stakes

     BALTIMORE, 05-17-08---IEAH Stables and Paul Pompa Jr.’s Big Brown, on cruise control until asked to go by jockey Kent Desormeaux, exploded away from his 11 rivals at the top of the Pimlico homestretch to notch a dominating victory in the 133rd running of the $1,000,000 Preakness Stakes (G I) Saturday.

     Maryland native Richard Dutrow Jr. saddled the bay son of Boundary, who will go on to the Belmont Stakes in three weeks with a chance to become the 12th Triple Crown champion and first since Affirmed, who achieved the elusive feat 30 years ago.

     Big Brown, who captured the Kentucky Derby by 4¾ lengths at Churchill Downs two weeks ago, won in hand by 5-1/4 lengths Saturday over long shot Macho Again. Icabad Crane was a half-length farther back in third and Racecar Rhapsody finished fourth.

     Big Brown completed the 1-3/16ths distance in 1:54.86 over the fast main track.  The track record for the Preakness Stakes is 1:53.46, held jointly by Curlin (2007), Louis Quatorze (1996) and Tank’s Prospect (1985).

     With temperatures in the 70’s, a crowd of 112,222 enjoyed a splendid day of racing at Old Hilltop under partly sunny skies, sending $73,457,510 through the betting windows. Both numbers rank fifth on the all-time list.

     Big Brown was the overwhelming 1-5 favorite among the fans on hand in Baltimore and nationwide simulcast bettors. He paid $2.40 to win as the shortest-priced winner since Maryland-based Spectacular Bid won in 1979 at 1-10. He topped a $36.60 exacta, a $336.80 triple and a $1,192.30 superfecta.

POST RACE NEWS CONFERENCE- FastScripts by ASAP Sports 

ERIC WING:  We're happy to have with us now, the ownership team of Big Brown from left to right, Paul Pompa, the original owner and now 25 percent owner of Big Brown, and to Paul's left the copresidents of IEAH Stable, Michael Iavarone and Richard Schiavo. 

Now we're joined, as you can see, by Rick Dutrow, and first I want to ask Michael Iavarone, $600,000 for winning the Preakness, $50 million or thereabouts for owning the horse.  Pretty good day's work? 

MICHAEL IAVARONE:  Yes.  No.  It was a tumultuous week for us.  We tried very hard to get the deal done with Three Chimneys.  Took a lot of legal work.  Believe it or not, it got signed as I was on my way to the race track, and we're just honored to be in business with the likes of Three Chimneys.  I'm sure they're honored right now with their move. 

ERIC WING:  Rick Dutrow, congratulations.  Obviously, a great training job anytime you have to bring a horseback off such an outstanding effort in one race and then come back again in two weeks. First of all, tell us what was your impression of what you saw out there in terms of having something left in tank perhaps three weeks down the road? 

RICK DUTROW:  I always have horse left.  No question.  Anybody that watched the race could see Kent never hit him with the stick that I could see.  Kent might have asked him to run for a 16th of a mile when he turned for home just to put the race away and glided to the wire. I see he did not get on his belly which was very important for us today, and I'm going to be under the impression that he's going to be awful tough to beat in the Belmont as long as he comes out of it good and trains good up to the race. 

ERIC WING:  I was remiss earlier.  I want to remind people listening upstairs in the main press box, you can relay a question down by going to see Joe and it will come down to me and I'll ask it for you. 

Kent Desormeaux has now joined us.  Kent, congratulations, and we noticed on your first trip down to the paddock you forgot to bring your whip with you, and you looked like from what we saw out there if you had forgotten it.  It really wouldn't have mattered. 

KENT DESORMEAUX:  I didn't think I needed it.  I decided -- that's not true.  I didn't forget my whip.  That's the valet's job.  The valet didn't bring it because I usually bring my own stick out.  He didn't have it.  I had started to walk out the to grab it from him.  He didn't have it.  I went right back in the room and found it where it's supposed to be. 

ERIC WING:  I guess by virtue of breaking in the middle of the pack he was behind horses for a brief period.  Unlike the Florida Derby and Kentucky Derby, able to save a little ground on the back turn.  Down the back stretch, you swung on out.  That is what you were intending to do all along to kind of keep your horse and yourself on the horse where the two of you were used to being? 

KENT DESORMEAUX:  Well, the plan actually -- I didn't know if I was going to be in front or not.  Actually on paper looked like I could easily be in front, but he slipped -- he's so strong, he powered out with his back legs and he just -- they just slipped, and he was standing in the same spot. It's actually -- it actually was his second push that lead him out of gate one whole length.  The door was open.  I was a length off the lead.  I already knew what I was doing there.  It was no longer -- it was throw out Plan A and B.  I was now dealt with a whole new deck of cards.  I reached and grabbed him.  Made him stay there and angled to the fence.

My whole job for that first half mile was to keep his face clean.  He came back.  There's not a grain of sand on his forehead or even most of his body.  I was able to jockey for a clean race, and that made me happy for him.

ERIC WING:  Kent, you talk about Plans A and B going out the window and resorting to Plan C.  These are instantaneous snap decisions on your part. How much does your experience as a Triple Crown race rider through the highs of winning and the lows of losing give you confidence and even able you to make those types of decisions. 

KENT DESORMEAUX:  My mom is here somewhere.  She probably would love this answer because I believe it's already been written.  We're living through God.  I'm thankful that I've been blessed with these beautiful people and freak of a horse.  It was just the easiest win ever. 

ERIC WING:  Paul Pompa, and obviously a great day for you and the a great day for UPS.  You have some partners who are knowledgeable and involved in the stock market. It's human nature when you buy a stock and have great gains, let's say you buy it for ten and sell it for 100 but it goes up to 110 after you sell it, even though you had a great transaction, you still kick yourself, oh, gee, I wish I had sold it at 110 of instead of 100.

You had the horse from the beginning.  You made a great deal for yourself.  Now the horse is worth even way more than you could have imagined.  What are your feelings now to see everything that's happened since you went into business with IEAH on Big Brown? 

PAUL POMPA:  I'm very proud of the whole connection here.  It's been a pleasure working with Mike.  I have a lot of respect for Rick Dutrow.  I had respect for Rick Dutrow before he had this horse and Mike and IEAH made me a very fair deal.  They took the risk.  Anybody who has owned any racehorses knows that injuries are such a big part of the game, and these guys, they're not afraid, and they made me a great deal.  And I stayed in, and I'm happy for my partners in the trucking business, UPS. I mean, you know, Mark getting wise, it's been great.  The employees are producing more and everybody's moral is at an all-time high.

I mean it's a win-win situation for everybody.  And as I said the other day, I'm not a greedy guy.  I mean, anything could have happened, and chances are if Rick Dutrow didn't get this horse, he might not have gotten to this level.

You know, I have a trainer in New York that trains my horse, Patrick Reynolds.  He did a great job breaking this horse.  And, you know, we'd like to do it again down the road in the next few years with other horses.  But for the team that we have assembled, IEAH, Rick Dutrow, myself, Kent Desormeaux, I couldn't be happier. 

ERIC WING:  Richie, we're used to hearing from Mike Iavarone.  You're kind of the quiet man in the two-man team. You're up there and deserve a lot of credit.  You're equals with Michael at IEAH.  What are your thoughts and feelings through the Triple Crown thus far and heading in to what could be an amazing Belmont Stakes? 

RICHARD SCHIAVO:  I'm not equals with Mike.  Mike gets all the credit for selecting the horses and getting us to where we are today along with Rick, his team, and Kent. It's exciting.  I'm a short-timer in this game.  To be where we are, to win the Derby, to win here -- I'm really -- I can't find the words.  It's exciting, and I know the next three weeks going back to Long Island, the excitement will build and we look forward to the Belmont Stakes. 

ERIC WING:  Okay.  Got a question up in the press box.  First of all, Kent, how many times did you look back in the stretch?

KENT DESORMEAUX:  Twice for sure, I can recall. 

ERIC WING:  In this day and age of Spy Gate, not only have you seen the opposite that the primary opposition figures to be the primary opposition in the Belmont Stakes, you've actually ridden the primary opposition, Casino Drive. Who on paper figures to be the horse to beat for Big Brown?  What are your thoughts on Casino Drive? 

KENT DESORMEAUX:  I definitely think it's good.  I've ridden all the horses across the country.  He's the only one that can even entertain Big Brown's stride.  It's going to be exciting.  He can run.  He's a nice horse.  It's another quarter of a mile.  You know, there's so many hurdles.  Can't wait to find out what happens but that's a cold exacta. 

ERIC WING:  Cold exacta or box exacta? 

KENT DESORMEAUX:  I don't know. 

ERIC WING:  Rick Dutrow, cold or box exacta? 

KENT DESORMEAUX:  It's cold, baby. 

ERIC WING:  Rick -- we'll let Rick compose himself for a moment.  Rick, much was made of the two-week turnaround from Kentucky to Maryland.  Your trainer who has run horses back not in two weeks, sometimes one week, sometimes one day, you gave a horse a 2-furlong blow-out this morning.  Can you just talk about is the strategy from a trainer's perspective to blow a horse out 2 furlongs the morning of a race? 

RICK DUTROW:  Well, number one, you have to know what the horse is looking for, and I have a theory that when I run horses, I don't never breeze them two weeks.  I always wait two weeks.  That's if they come out of the race good. So, when there's a race back form two weeks from the day they run, I'm figuring to myself let me just blow him out a little bit and, you know, it's a number of reasons why you do that.  I don't know if any of them work.  I was telling Iavarone last night, I says, "Mike, we can breeze him a half mile, 3/8s, a quarter, we can walk him, gallop him, jog him.  It doesn't matter what we do with the horse."
I was just taking every precaution, trying to do everything the right way to get him there the best way, and I thought doing this this morning was the move.

I could see he was full of energy.  Didn't want to take any energy out of him.  I wanted to just kind of let him know he was going to run later on.  It usually helps them when you blow them out that morning, usually puts them on the feet when they come out of the gate even though he slipped some.

It helps horses sometimes, and I can see the opportunity comes up, I wouldn't be afraid to do it again with him. 

ERIC WING:  Michael, today's Preakness was wonderful not just because of Big Brown's victory, but in addition to a thrilling race, it was a safe race. Obviously some of the jubilation of winning the Kentucky Derby had to be tempered by the injury suffered by Eight Belles. In this respect, this race, the Preakness, is even more exhilarating for you just because the race was safe and we can celebrate Big Brown's great performance for what it really was in.  

MICHAEL IAVARONE:  Well, I think the issue with Eight Belles not only affected us but it affected the sport in its entirety. I think it's important now for thoroughbred racing to come together as a whole when you have a horse like Big Brown with a chance to make history.  Just the opportunity for us to go back to New York with a chance to do that is just an amazing opportunity for us. 

ERIC WING:  Since you brought it up, Kentucky comes back to Maryland, Wednesday the Preakness.  That holds special meaning for him, I know.  You guys are New York based, all three of you up there. I should add Rick Dutrow to the Maryland be contingent along with Kentucky.  You three guys in New York. You guys are from New York.  Can you talk about the exhilaration of kind of coming home as conquering heroes? 

MICHAEL IAVARONE:  I think the stud deal we made today might be able to pay for the tickets in the grandstand.  I think we're going to be a thousand deep there.  Bringing it back to New York has, as I said, is just a dream come true.  New York has been captured by the moment even leading up to the Preakness.  Now I expect the momentum to only build from here.  Kent, myself and Rick, Rich, all, from New York area, and it's going to be a fun three weeks. 

ERIC WING:  Okay.  By the way, we do have representatives from Three Chimneys Farms here if anybody wants to ask them a question, but now we'll throw it open to the people here, and I will repeat the question for the benefit of those listening upstairs.  We'll start with Ed. Richard, seems like in the last 24 hours your disposition around the horse changed.  What did he show you Friday, Friday night, Saturday morning that sort of changed the tide from being a little weary for two weeks and more today. What, if anything, caused that change?  

RICHARD SCHIAVO:  My girlfriend flew in (laughter). 

ERIC WING:  Enough said.  Rick, how differently did the race unfold from what you thought it would unfold like and -- 

RICK DUTROW:  I wasn't planning on seeing down on the inside kind of looking to get trapped in there for an instant.  You know, it looked kind of dangerous at that point.  Sometimes when they get trapped in, it's kind of hard to get out but, you know, Kent had the horse, and the first three horses kind of separated themselves from the field where there was plenty of time for Kent to take the horse back and get his position on outside. I was not surprised that he won so easy because I know we have a good horse, and I know he was running a race where they didn't have good horses running. 

ERIC WING:  How much could you have won the race, Kent, if you tried to maximize it?

ENT DESORMEAUX:  I don't know, and honestly I really don't think it's important.  The important thing is the horse came home safe and we get to move into the next town hopefully with -- he's going back to the barn only used half the tank.  So I hope I made -- I hope I -- I hope I helped make Mr. Dutrow's job a little easier over the next three weeks. 

ERIC WING:  Rick, you just mentioned a moment ago you were less an overwhelmed by the opposition in the Preakness. With Casino Drive you've got a horse who ran a impressive Peter Pan and perhaps even more important, it's in his genes.  He's a half sibling to the last two winners of the Belmont Stakes in Jazil and Rags to Riches.  What's your take on Casino Drive? 

RICK DUTROW:  Well, I would like to have him, number one.  He looks like a nice horse.  Number two, I believe that he can't beat our horse.  So all Japanese people are going to think when they come here that they thought Godzilla was dead.  They're going to find out he's not dead, he's here (laughter). 

ERIC WING:  First Preakness press conference where we need recovery time after each answer.

Rick, we do have another question upstairs.  What are your shipping plans to Belmont?  

RICK DUTROW:  Monday, 10:00 straight in Frankel's Barn. 

ERIC WING:  Monday departing at 10:00? 

RICK DUTROW:  Departing here we're going to go straight in Frankel's Barn.  Empire Maker's stall.  Bobby has got it all.  I'd rather train him at Belmont for the big race.  I want to take every advantage, cross every T, dot every I that we possibly can.  I don't want to take anything for granted.  I want to get there the right way.

ERIC WING:  I know as a trainer you're always concerned about a horse liking a given surface.  Is that part of the Belmont strategy to get a fix in your mind how he takes to Belmont Park? 

RICK DUTROW:  When Pat had him he had him training on that track.  Every time a jockey or rider has gotten on Big Brown, I don't care if it's mud, grass, whatever track it is, they have absolutely loved him.  So I can't imagine that he needs to carry his track around with him. I'm not sending him to Belmont to get him to like the track.  I'm just thinking that it's a better move as opposed to sending him to Aqueduct.  He doesn't need to go to Aqueduct to train for the Belmont. 

ERIC WING:  What are your breeze plans with Big Brown?  

RICK DUTROW:  I wait two weeks, I breeze him, and then I most likely blow him out the day he's in.  That's the way the time the timing is set up, you know. 

ERIC WING:  Is the tougher obstacle in your mind the third race in five weeks or the mile and a half distance?  

RICK DUTROW:  Well, that's another good question from Tom.  This guy knows how to ask questions.  So I got to tell you that I don't think that I'm afraid of anything.  I don't think that anything worries me as long as this horse comes out of the race good, you know, we're going to point him to the race, try to get him there the best way we can, and we're going to be excited and just be hoping for the best.  I'm not afraid of a mile and a half.  I'm not afraid of five weeks, three races.  The horse just keeps impressing-- anytime they asked him for anything, he's been way ahead of us.  He's waiting on us. So, I can't imagine we're going to screw anything up here.  We're going to go with the basic plan like we always have, nothing special.  If he's got the mile and a half in him, he'll get it.  If he wants to run back off this week in three weeks, I can't imagine there's going to be a problem. 

ERIC WING:  The question is for Kent.  Can you talk about the ride from the far turn on home and how much did you ask him and so forth? 

KENT DESORMEAUX:  In the last corner I looked back under my arms one more time before I asked him to run to see where everybody was, and I had seen -- what I saw was everyone had gotten their horses running and they had looped up to the flight in front of them and they were all having to check their horses to slow them down. So I thought this is a perfect opportunity to, while they're slowing their mounts down, to separate from them.

And it felt like deja vu to the Kentucky Derby.  It almost looked like a replay of the Kentucky Derby.  I cornered with a can the horse a half length in front of me.  I kissed.  I kissed at him.  I tapped him on the shoulder.  He just took off.  He's got some turn of foot.

I don't know.  I guess -- I guess I was knuckling on him, elbows and whatnot, for about a hundred yards, and then I looked between my legs and there were eight behind me.  I stopped pushing.  I said that's enough.  (Laughter).  Then I looked one more time I think at the 16 pole, and I think they had maintained an eight-length separation.  And I started slowing him down and watching TV, make sure nothing went crazy.

ERIC WING:  I guess having a great horse gives you options as a rider.  Question from the press box, Kent.  How will the experience from riding in the Belmont with Real Quiet affect you in any way heading into this Belmont Stakes?  

KENT DESORMEAUX:  I think the experience riding there as a regular rider would be what has helped me the most.  You know, I'm very excited to hear that Richard is bringing him straightaway there because none of the other horses that I attended that with did that.  It's just a different oval.  You go from a track where you actually want to engage when you hit the turn, the last turn, and at Belmont you're still five-eights of a mile from the wire.  It's confusing for the horses as much as anything else. And I think for me as a rider I knew better, but the horses didn't in past, in my past efforts to win a Triple Crown. I think just this guy knows what he's doing.  I'm happy to be his pilot. 

ERIC WING:  How much of a -- I didn't quite hear the whole thing.  How much of a relief was it for you today?  You thought Fusachi Pegasus couldn't lose, Big Brown came through in a big way. 

KENT DESORMEAUX:  Well, I think for me it will be like every two-dollar bettor out there that bet Big Brown.  You're right.  I was right.  I felt like I was right.  Yeah.  I was happy.  Success.  I had a winning ticket.  When you handicap a race and go through the form and figure, okay, the seven is going to win, you know, not only do you collect ten dollars, but I picked that horse, I was right. That's kind of the feeling when you stand up there and say, "This is the best horse I've ever ridden," and then you got see what he can do.  You feel proud that you didn't tell any stories.  These are not -- I wasn't telling a story and that is -- that makes you feel good for winning.  You feel happiness inside. 

ERIC WING:  Is this the best horse you've ever ridden, Kent? 

KENT DESORMEAUX:  This is the best horse I've ever ridden.  I said it. 

ERIC WING:  Paul and Mike and Richie, Kent might back me up on this.  Lots of people love a Derby winner.  Way more people love a Derby and Preakness winner who is about to try for the Triple Crown.  What do you anticipate the next three weeks being like? 

MICHAEL IAVARONE:  I think it will be quiet.  Rick and I said if we win the Preakness, we're going to go to Hawaii for two weeks.  I don't think I have to answer that question.  It's going to be crazy. 

ERIC WING:  Anything else for -- go ahead, Paul. 

PAUL POMPA:  I want to say that Rick Dutrow has had a tremendous career.  He won three Breeders' Cup races in the last three years.  He's one Grade 1's all over the place.  I hope this horse gets him in the Hall of Fame. 

MICHAEL IAVARONE:  We finally got Dutrow a publicist. 

ERIC WING:  Rich, don't want to leave you out in the cold over there on the right.

RICHARD SCHIAVO:  I think the last two weeks have been pretty crazy.  The next three weeks will be exciting.  I know the phone, I think Mike and my phone has been going off.  We have a lot of friends and family.  Everyone will want to be a part of Big Brown and the Belmont Stakes.  So, you know, I think we'll just try to stay as calm and as humble as we can but we're all excited about the opportunity, our chances in the final leg. 

ERIC WING:  Alright.  Well, Kent Desormeaux, Rick Dutrow, Paul Pompa, Michael Iavarone, and Richie Schiavo, great job today.  See you in three weeks.

              

Trainer and Jockey Quotes

Richard Dutrow (trainer, Big Brown, winner) – “Going down the backside when Kent got him out and he was laying third on the outside, I knew it was over. He just bided his time as long as he could. I only saw him ask for run once just to separate himself, then he guided him to the wire. It was beautiful.

“I was nervous, scared about the two weeks, stuff like that, but he’s overcome everything.

“It doesn’t look like he got on his belly today, so we should have enough horse to get the job done.”

Kent Desormeaux (jockey, Big Brown, winner) – (from NBC telecast) “I’ll tell you what, I asked him for his stride at the corner – almost déjà vu to the Derby. I looked between my legs, under my arms, and they were eight back.  I just stopped riding and reeled him in and made sure he didn’t pull himself up.

If not more then equally (to the Derby). This is my home. Maryland My Maryland. I cut my teeth to the industry here. Coming here, it feels like when I go home to my mothers’ house and I walk into my bedroom. That’s how I feel when I arrive in Maryland.” 

Dallas Stewart (trainer, Macho Again, 2nd) – “He really, really ran great. I knew he was a real nice horse and came home great. He hooked a superstar, you know.”       

Julien Leparoux (jockey, Macho Again, 2nd) – “We just got beat by a monster. He might just be a Triple Crown winner. We ran huge and that’s very important. This is kind of the best second place I’ve ever had. I don’t like to be second, but it’s not bad to be second to this horse.” 

Graham Motion (trainer, Icabad Crane,  3rd) – “What can I say? I thought he ran huge. I thought really he was unlucky not to be second. He got stopped pretty bad at the top of the stretch when the frontrunners started backing up. He really had to get him going again, which I thought was really impressive – that he got back up to be third. Big Brown’s a very, very good horse. He’s the real deal. It’s very exciting for the game.” 

Jeremy Rose (jockey, Icabad Crane, 3rd) – “My trip was good to the quarter-pole. I went after Big Brown, but he just threw dirt on me. My horse ran his heart out, and with a little better trip. I may well have gotten second.” 

Ken McPeek (trainer, Racecar Rhapsody, 4th) – “He ran great. I wished he could have found a way inside and we could have gotten a clear second. I think he deserved to be second. He gave his all. The horse ran a good race. He hooked a very, very special horse. Congratulations to Rick Dutrow and Kent Desormeaux. We had a feeling when we ran against him in Florida that we were in the presence of greatness.” 

Robby Albarado (jockey, Racecar Rhapsody, 4th) – “I made my move on the far turn, managed to range up to second, but we were unable to hang on. My horse ran good though.”

Nick Zito (trainer, Stevil,  5th) – “He was in a little tight quarters. I thought he was going to be second because he was following Big Brown. We got excited. He ran fifth, he tried hard. You’ve got to salute the winner. There’s no question he’s a tremendous horse.” 

John Velazquez (jockey, Stevil, 5th) – “I was right behind Big Brown the whole time. I was biding my time there. I tried to get position in the final turn. When Big Brown moved I pulled out, but he just got away. My horse simply flattened out in the lane.” 

Reade Baker (trainer, Kentucky Bear, 6th) – “He stumbled out of the gate and really had no chance after that. The jock thought he should have been second if everything went right. I guess we know that Big Brown is the real deal now.” 

Jamie Theriot (jockey, Kentucky Bear, 6th) – “He slipped leaving the gate bad. We gave up two or three lengths right away. I think I was on the second best horse today. But nothing worked out right for us today.” 

Eddie Plesa (trainer, Hey Byrn, 7th) – “He laid close and was where he needed to be. He was wide going to the first turn and it took its toll on him.” 

Chuck Lopez (jockey, Hey Byrn, 7th) – “My horse broke well. I secured position on the first turn and had a good trip. I followed Big Brown most of the way, but my horse was not just good enough today.” 

Rick  Schosberg (trainer, Giant Moon, 8th) –“We’re just not good enough. It’s probably just a little over his head, no doubt about it. We were wide pretty much the whole way – tough to do that. Our post position caught up with us. My hat’s off to these people. That is one helluva racehorse. 

Ramon Dominguez (jockey, Giant Moon, 8th) – “My horse broke really good. I was in very good position early. But my horse ran a little spotty. Coming into the lane he seemed like he was stopping. Then, when he came into the stretch and changed leads, he started running again. I really don’t have an excuse.”

Beau Greely (trainer, Tres Borrachos, 9th) – “I saw him stumble and Tyler said he went down to his nose. That’s part of horse racing. It can happen to any horse. Tyler thought he came home good, and that’s the important part. We’ll live to fight another day.” 

Tyler Baze (jockey, Tres Borrachos, 9th) – “The break was rough. I was lucky to stay on him. After that, we were last and had to go to Plan B.”

Patrick Gallagher (trainer, Yankee Bravo, 10th) – “He went into the turn and made a nice move inside. From the five-sixteenths (pole) to the three-sixteenths (pole) he was behind a lot of horses. The last part he just struggled. I wonder if it’s the distance. It looks like Big Brown might win the Belmont farther than Secretariat.” 

Alex Solis (jockey, Yankee Bravo, 10th) – “We had a really good trip, actually. We broke fine and my horse was running OK, but he just didn’t handle the track. This is a completely different track than (Santa Anita). He got me really excited at the three-eighths pole, but he just couldn’t handle the surface. 

Paulo Lobo (trainer, Gayego, 11th) – “He didn’t break well and he had to rush up. He did not run as we expected. At this point, we’re going to rest him up.” 

Mike Smith (jockey, Gayego 11th) – “It’s very disappointing. He just doesn’t have it yet. He made the lead easy, but no response to pressure. 

Bill Mott (trainer, Riley Tucker, 12th) – “Big Brown’s a monster. My horse seems fine. He went a little fast early to help produce the pace. Then, I thought he might be in the first flight, but he ended up in the second. 

Edgar Prado (jockey, Riley Tucker (12th) – “My horse broke good, but they came over on me. He ran well, but we just couldn’t keep up with Big Brown.”     BALTIMORE, 05-17-08---IEAH Stables and Paul Pompa Jr.’s Big Brown, on cruise control until asked to go by jockey Kent Desormeaux, exploded away from his 11 rivals at the top of the Pimlico homestretch to notch a dominating victory in the 133rd running of the $1,000,000 Preakness Stakes (G I) Saturday.

     Maryland native Richard Dutrow Jr. saddled the bay son of Boundary, who will go on to the Belmont Stakes in three weeks with a chance to become the 12th Triple Crown champion and first since Affirmed, who achieved the elusive feat 30 years ago.

     Big Brown, who captured the Kentucky Derby by 4¾ lengths at Churchill Downs two weeks ago, won in hand by 5-1/4 lengths Saturday over long shot Macho Again. Icabad Crane was a half-length farther back in third and Racecar Rhapsody finished fourth.

     Big Brown completed the 1-3/16ths distance in 1:54.86 over the fast main track.  The track record for the Preakness Stakes is 1:53.46, held jointly by Curlin (2007), Louis Quatorze (1996) and Tank’s Prospect (1985).

     With temperatures in the 70’s, a crowd of 112,222 enjoyed a splendid day of racing at Old Hilltop under partly sunny skies, sending $73,457,510 through the betting windows. Both numbers rank fifth on the all-time list.

     Big Brown was the overwhelming 1-5 favorite among the fans on hand in Baltimore and nationwide simulcast bettors. He paid $2.40 to win as the shortest-priced winner since Maryland-based Spectacular Bid won in 1979 at 1-10. He topped a $36.60 exacta, a $336.80 triple and a $1,192.30 superfecta.

POST RACE NEWS CONFERENCE- FastScripts by ASAP Sports 

ERIC WING:  We're happy to have with us now, the ownership team of Big Brown from left to right, Paul Pompa, the original owner and now 25 percent owner of Big Brown, and to Paul's left the copresidents of IEAH Stable, Michael Iavarone and Richard Schiavo. 

Now we're joined, as you can see, by Rick Dutrow, and first I want to ask Michael Iavarone, $600,000 for winning the Preakness, $50 million or thereabouts for owning the horse.  Pretty good day's work? 

MICHAEL IAVARONE:  Yes.  No.  It was a tumultuous week for us.  We tried very hard to get the deal done with Three Chimneys.  Took a lot of legal work.  Believe it or not, it got signed as I was on my way to the race track, and we're just honored to be in business with the likes of Three Chimneys.  I'm sure they're honored right now with their move. 

ERIC WING:  Rick Dutrow, congratulations.  Obviously, a great training job anytime you have to bring a horseback off such an outstanding effort in one race and then come back again in two weeks. First of all, tell us what was your impression of what you saw out there in terms of having something left in tank perhaps three weeks down the road? 

RICK DUTROW:  I always have horse left.  No question.  Anybody that watched the race could see Kent never hit him with the stick that I could see.  Kent might have asked him to run for a 16th of a mile when he turned for home just to put the race away and glided to the wire. I see he did not get on his belly which was very important for us today, and I'm going to be under the impression that he's going to be awful tough to beat in the Belmont as long as he comes out of it good and trains good up to the race. 

ERIC WING:  I was remiss earlier.  I want to remind people listening upstairs in the main press box, you can relay a question down by going to see Joe and it will come down to me and I'll ask it for you. 

Kent Desormeaux has now joined us.  Kent, congratulations, and we noticed on your first trip down to the paddock you forgot to bring your whip with you, and you looked like from what we saw out there if you had forgotten it.  It really wouldn't have mattered. 

KENT DESORMEAUX:  I didn't think I needed it.  I decided -- that's not true.  I didn't forget my whip.  That's the valet's job.  The valet didn't bring it because I usually bring my own stick out.  He didn't have it.  I had started to walk out the to grab it from him.  He didn't have it.  I went right back in the room and found it where it's supposed to be. 

ERIC WING:  I guess by virtue of breaking in the middle of the pack he was behind horses for a brief period.  Unlike the Florida Derby and Kentucky Derby, able to save a little ground on the back turn.  Down the back stretch, you swung on out.  That is what you were intending to do all along to kind of keep your horse and yourself on the horse where the two of you were used to being? 

KENT DESORMEAUX:  Well, the plan actually -- I didn't know if I was going to be in front or not.  Actually on paper looked like I could easily be in front, but he slipped -- he's so strong, he powered out with his back legs and he just -- they just slipped, and he was standing in the same spot. It's actually -- it actually was his second push that lead him out of gate one whole length.  The door was open.  I was a length off the lead.  I already knew what I was doing there.  It was no longer -- it was throw out Plan A and B.  I was now dealt with a whole new deck of cards.  I reached and grabbed him.  Made him stay there and angled to the fence.

My whole job for that first half mile was to keep his face clean.  He came back.  There's not a grain of sand on his forehead or even most of his body.  I was able to jockey for a clean race, and that made me happy for him.

ERIC WING:  Kent, you talk about Plans A and B going out the window and resorting to Plan C.  These are instantaneous snap decisions on your part. How much does your experience as a Triple Crown race rider through the highs of winning and the lows of losing give you confidence and even able you to make those types of decisions. 

KENT DESORMEAUX:  My mom is here somewhere.  She probably would love this answer because I believe it's already been written.  We're living through God.  I'm thankful that I've been blessed with these beautiful people and freak of a horse.  It was just the easiest win ever. 

ERIC WING:  Paul Pompa, and obviously a great day for you and the a great day for UPS.  You have some partners who are knowledgeable and involved in the stock market. It's human nature when you buy a stock and have great gains, let's say you buy it for ten and sell it for 100 but it goes up to 110 after you sell it, even though you had a great transaction, you still kick yourself, oh, gee, I wish I had sold it at 110 of instead of 100.

You had the horse from the beginning.  You made a great deal for yourself.  Now the horse is worth even way more than you could have imagined.  What are your feelings now to see everything that's happened since you went into business with IEAH on Big Brown? 

PAUL POMPA:  I'm very proud of the whole connection here.  It's been a pleasure working with Mike.  I have a lot of respect for Rick Dutrow.  I had respect for Rick Dutrow before he had this horse and Mike and IEAH made me a very fair deal.  They took the risk.  Anybody who has owned any racehorses knows that injuries are such a big part of the game, and these guys, they're not afraid, and they made me a great deal.  And I stayed in, and I'm happy for my partners in the trucking business, UPS. I mean, you know, Mark getting wise, it's been great.  The employees are producing more and everybody's moral is at an all-time high.

I mean it's a win-win situation for everybody.  And as I said the other day, I'm not a greedy guy.  I mean, anything could have happened, and chances are if Rick Dutrow didn't get this horse, he might not have gotten to this level.

You know, I have a trainer in New York that trains my horse, Patrick Reynolds.  He did a great job breaking this horse.  And, you know, we'd like to do it again down the road in the next few years with other horses.  But for the team that we have assembled, IEAH, Rick Dutrow, myself, Kent Desormeaux, I couldn't be happier. 

ERIC WING:  Richie, we're used to hearing from Mike Iavarone.  You're kind of the quiet man in the two-man team. You're up there and deserve a lot of credit.  You're equals with Michael at IEAH.  What are your thoughts and feelings through the Triple Crown thus far and heading in to what could be an amazing Belmont Stakes? 

RICHARD SCHIAVO:  I'm not equals with Mike.  Mike gets all the credit for selecting the horses and getting us to where we are today along with Rick, his team, and Kent. It's exciting.  I'm a short-timer in this game.  To be where we are, to win the Derby, to win here -- I'm really -- I can't find the words.  It's exciting, and I know the next three weeks going back to Long Island, the excitement will build and we look forward to the Belmont Stakes. 

ERIC WING:  Okay.  Got a question up in the press box.  First of all, Kent, how many times did you look back in the stretch?

KENT DESORMEAUX:  Twice for sure, I can recall. 

ERIC WING:  In this day and age of Spy Gate, not only have you seen the opposite that the primary opposition figures to be the primary opposition in the Belmont Stakes, you've actually ridden the primary opposition, Casino Drive. Who on paper figures to be the horse to beat for Big Brown?  What are your thoughts on Casino Drive? 

KENT DESORMEAUX:  I definitely think it's good.  I've ridden all the horses across the country.  He's the only one that can even entertain Big Brown's stride.  It's going to be exciting.  He can run.  He's a nice horse.  It's another quarter of a mile.  You know, there's so many hurdles.  Can't wait to find out what happens but that's a cold exacta. 

ERIC WING:  Cold exacta or box exacta? 

KENT DESORMEAUX:  I don't know. 

ERIC WING:  Rick Dutrow, cold or box exacta? 

KENT DESORMEAUX:  It's cold, baby. 

ERIC WING:  Rick -- we'll let Rick compose himself for a moment.  Rick, much was made of the two-week turnaround from Kentucky to Maryland.  Your trainer who has run horses back not in two weeks, sometimes one week, sometimes one day, you gave a horse a 2-furlong blow-out this morning.  Can you just talk about is the strategy from a trainer's perspective to blow a horse out 2 furlongs the morning of a race? 

RICK DUTROW:  Well, number one, you have to know what the horse is looking for, and I have a theory that when I run horses, I don't never breeze them two weeks.  I always wait two weeks.  That's if they come out of the race good. So, when there's a race back form two weeks from the day they run, I'm figuring to myself let me just blow him out a little bit and, you know, it's a number of reasons why you do that.  I don't know if any of them work.  I was telling Iavarone last night, I says, "Mike, we can breeze him a half mile, 3/8s, a quarter, we can walk him, gallop him, jog him.  It doesn't matter what we do with the horse."
I was just taking every precaution, trying to do everything the right way to get him there the best way, and I thought doing this this morning was the move.

I could see he was full of energy.  Didn't want to take any energy out of him.  I wanted to just kind of let him know he was going to run later on.  It usually helps them when you blow them out that morning, usually puts them on the feet when they come out of the gate even though he slipped some.

It helps horses sometimes, and I can see the opportunity comes up, I wouldn't be afraid to do it again with him. 

ERIC WING:  Michael, today's Preakness was wonderful not just because of Big Brown's victory, but in addition to a thrilling race, it was a safe race. Obviously some of the jubilation of winning the Kentucky Derby had to be tempered by the injury suffered by Eight Belles. In this respect, this race, the Preakness, is even more exhilarating for you just because the race was safe and we can celebrate Big Brown's great performance for what it really was in.  

MICHAEL IAVARONE:  Well, I think the issue with Eight Belles not only affected us but it affected the sport in its entirety. I think it's important now for thoroughbred racing to come together as a whole when you have a horse like Big Brown with a chance to make history.  Just the opportunity for us to go back to New York with a chance to do that is just an amazing opportunity for us. 

ERIC WING:  Since you brought it up, Kentucky comes back to Maryland, Wednesday the Preakness.  That holds special meaning for him, I know.  You guys are New York based, all three of you up there. I should add Rick Dutrow to the Maryland be contingent along with Kentucky.  You three guys in New York. You guys are from New York.  Can you talk about the exhilaration of kind of coming home as conquering heroes? 

MICHAEL IAVARONE:  I think the stud deal we made today might be able to pay for the tickets in the grandstand.  I think we're going to be a thousand deep there.  Bringing it back to New York has, as I said, is just a dream come true.  New York has been captured by the moment even leading up to the Preakness.  Now I expect the momentum to only build from here.  Kent, myself and Rick, Rich, all, from New York area, and it's going to be a fun three weeks. 

ERIC WING:  Okay.  By the way, we do have representatives from Three Chimneys Farms here if anybody wants to ask them a question, but now we'll throw it open to the people here, and I will repeat the question for the benefit of those listening upstairs.  We'll start with Ed. Richard, seems like in the last 24 hours your disposition around the horse changed.  What did he show you Friday, Friday night, Saturday morning that sort of changed the tide from being a little weary for two weeks and more today. What, if anything, caused that change?  

RICHARD SCHIAVO:  My girlfriend flew in (laughter). 

ERIC WING:  Enough said.  Rick, how differently did the race unfold from what you thought it would unfold like and -- 

RICK DUTROW:  I wasn't planning on seeing down on the inside kind of looking to get trapped in there for an instant.  You know, it looked kind of dangerous at that point.  Sometimes when they get trapped in, it's kind of hard to get out but, you know, Kent had the horse, and the first three horses kind of separated themselves from the field where there was plenty of time for Kent to take the horse back and get his position on outside. I was not surprised that he won so easy because I know we have a good horse, and I know he was running a race where they didn't have good horses running. 

ERIC WING:  How much could you have won the race, Kent, if you tried to maximize it?

ENT DESORMEAUX:  I don't know, and honestly I really don't think it's important.  The important thing is the horse came home safe and we get to move into the next town hopefully with -- he's going back to the barn only used half the tank.  So I hope I made -- I hope I -- I hope I helped make Mr. Dutrow's job a little easier over the next three weeks. 

ERIC WING:  Rick, you just mentioned a moment ago you were less an overwhelmed by the opposition in the Preakness. With Casino Drive you've got a horse who ran a impressive Peter Pan and perhaps even more important, it's in his genes.  He's a half sibling to the last two winners of the Belmont Stakes in Jazil and Rags to Riches.  What's your take on Casino Drive? 

RICK DUTROW:  Well, I would like to have him, number one.  He looks like a nice horse.  Number two, I believe that he can't beat our horse.  So all Japanese people are going to think when they come here that they thought Godzilla was dead.  They're going to find out he's not dead, he's here (laughter). 

ERIC WING:  First Preakness press conference where we need recovery time after each answer.

Rick, we do have another question upstairs.  What are your shipping plans to Belmont?  

RICK DUTROW:  Monday, 10:00 straight in Frankel's Barn. 

ERIC WING:  Monday departing at 10:00? 

RICK DUTROW:  Departing here we're going to go straight in Frankel's Barn.  Empire Maker's stall.  Bobby has got it all.  I'd rather train him at Belmont for the big race.  I want to take every advantage, cross every T, dot every I that we possibly can.  I don't want to take anything for granted.  I want to get there the right way.

ERIC WING:  I know as a trainer you're always concerned about a horse liking a given surface.  Is that part of the Belmont strategy to get a fix in your mind how he takes to Belmont Park? 

RICK DUTROW:  When Pat had him he had him training on that track.  Every time a jockey or rider has gotten on Big Brown, I don't care if it's mud, grass, whatever track it is, they have absolutely loved him.  So I can't imagine that he needs to carry his track around with him. I'm not sending him to Belmont to get him to like the track.  I'm just thinking that it's a better move as opposed to sending him to Aqueduct.  He doesn't need to go to Aqueduct to train for the Belmont. 

ERIC WING:  What are your breeze plans with Big Brown?  

RICK DUTROW:  I wait two weeks, I breeze him, and then I most likely blow him out the day he's in.  That's the way the time the timing is set up, you know. 

ERIC WING:  Is the tougher obstacle in your mind the third race in five weeks or the mile and a half distance?  

RICK DUTROW:  Well, that's another good question from Tom.  This guy knows how to ask questions.  So I got to tell you that I don't think that I'm afraid of anything.  I don't think that anything worries me as long as this horse comes out of the race good, you know, we're going to point him to the race, try to get him there the best way we can, and we're going to be excited and just be hoping for the best.  I'm not afraid of a mile and a half.  I'm not afraid of five weeks, three races.  The horse just keeps impressing-- anytime they asked him for anything, he's been way ahead of us.  He's waiting on us. So, I can't imagine we're going to screw anything up here.  We're going to go with the basic plan like we always have, nothing special.  If he's got the mile and a half in him, he'll get it.  If he wants to run back off this week in three weeks, I can't imagine there's going to be a problem. 

ERIC WING:  The question is for Kent.  Can you talk about the ride from the far turn on home and how much did you ask him and so forth? 

KENT DESORMEAUX:  In the last corner I looked back under my arms one more time before I asked him to run to see where everybody was, and I had seen -- what I saw was everyone had gotten their horses running and they had looped up to the flight in front of them and they were all having to check their horses to slow them down. So I thought this is a perfect opportunity to, while they're slowing their mounts down, to separate from them.

And it felt like deja vu to the Kentucky Derby.  It almost looked like a replay of the Kentucky Derby.  I cornered with a can the horse a half length in front of me.  I kissed.  I kissed at him.  I tapped him on the shoulder.  He just took off.  He's got some turn of foot.

I don't know.  I guess -- I guess I was knuckling on him, elbows and whatnot, for about a hundred yards, and then I looked between my legs and there were eight behind me.  I stopped pushing.  I said that's enough.  (Laughter).  Then I looked one more time I think at the 16 pole, and I think they had maintained an eight-length separation.  And I started slowing him down and watching TV, make sure nothing went crazy.

ERIC WING:  I guess having a great horse gives you options as a rider.  Question from the press box, Kent.  How will the experience from riding in the Belmont with Real Quiet affect you in any way heading into this Belmont Stakes?  

KENT DESORMEAUX:  I think the experience riding there as a regular rider would be what has helped me the most.  You know, I'm very excited to hear that Richard is bringing him straightaway there because none of the other horses that I attended that with did that.  It's just a different oval.  You go from a track where you actually want to engage when you hit the turn, the last turn, and at Belmont you're still five-eights of a mile from the wire.  It's confusing for the horses as much as anything else. And I think for me as a rider I knew better, but the horses didn't in past, in my past efforts to win a Triple Crown. I think just this guy knows what he's doing.  I'm happy to be his pilot. 

ERIC WING:  How much of a -- I didn't quite hear the whole thing.  How much of a relief was it for you today?  You thought Fusachi Pegasus couldn't lose, Big Brown came through in a big way. 

KENT DESORMEAUX:  Well, I think for me it will be like every two-dollar bettor out there that bet Big Brown.  You're right.  I was right.  I felt like I was right.  Yeah.  I was happy.  Success.  I had a winning ticket.  When you handicap a race and go through the form and figure, okay, the seven is going to win, you know, not only do you collect ten dollars, but I picked that horse, I was right. That's kind of the feeling when you stand up there and say, "This is the best horse I've ever ridden," and then you got see what he can do.  You feel proud that you didn't tell any stories.  These are not -- I wasn't telling a story and that is -- that makes you feel good for winning.  You feel happiness inside. 

ERIC WING:  Is this the best horse you've ever ridden, Kent? 

KENT DESORMEAUX:  This is the best horse I've ever ridden.  I said it. 

ERIC WING:  Paul and Mike and Richie, Kent might back me up on this.  Lots of people love a Derby winner.  Way more people love a Derby and Preakness winner who is about to try for the Triple Crown.  What do you anticipate the next three weeks being like? 

MICHAEL IAVARONE:  I think it will be quiet.  Rick and I said if we win the Preakness, we're going to go to Hawaii for two weeks.  I don't think I have to answer that question.  It's going to be crazy. 

ERIC WING:  Anything else for -- go ahead, Paul. 

PAUL POMPA:  I want to say that Rick Dutrow has had a tremendous career.  He won three Breeders' Cup races in the last three years.  He's one Grade 1's all over the place.  I hope this horse gets him in the Hall of Fame. 

MICHAEL IAVARONE:  We finally got Dutrow a publicist. 

ERIC WING:  Rich, don't want to leave you out in the cold over there on the right.

RICHARD SCHIAVO:  I think the last two weeks have been pretty crazy.  The next three weeks will be exciting.  I know the phone, I think Mike and my phone has been going off.  We have a lot of friends and family.  Everyone will want to be a part of Big Brown and the Belmont Stakes.  So, you know, I think we'll just try to stay as calm and as humble as we can but we're all excited about the opportunity, our chances in the final leg. 

ERIC WING:  Alright.  Well, Kent Desormeaux, Rick Dutrow, Paul Pompa, Michael Iavarone, and Richie Schiavo, great job today.  See you in three weeks.

              

Trainer and Jockey Quotes

Richard Dutrow (trainer, Big Brown, winner) – “Going down the backside when Kent got him out and he was laying third on the outside, I knew it was over. He just bided his time as long as he could. I only saw him ask for run once just to separate himself, then he guided him to the wire. It was beautiful.

“I was nervous, scared about the two weeks, stuff like that, but he’s overcome everything.

“It doesn’t look like he got on his belly today, so we should have enough horse to get the job done.”

Kent Desormeaux (jockey, Big Brown, winner) – (from NBC telecast) “I’ll tell you what, I asked him for his stride at the corner – almost déjà vu to the Derby. I looked between my legs, under my arms, and they were eight back.  I just stopped riding and reeled him in and made sure he didn’t pull himself up.

If not more then equally (to the Derby). This is my home. Maryland My Maryland. I cut my teeth to the industry here. Coming here, it feels like when I go home to my mothers’ house and I walk into my bedroom. That’s how I feel when I arrive in Maryland.” 

Dallas Stewart (trainer, Macho Again, 2nd) – “He really, really ran great. I knew he was a real nice horse and came home great. He hooked a superstar, you know.”       

Julien Leparoux (jockey, Macho Again, 2nd) – “We just got beat by a monster. He might just be a Triple Crown winner. We ran huge and that’s very important. This is kind of the best second place I’ve ever had. I don’t like to be second, but it’s not bad to be second to this horse.” 

Graham Motion (trainer, Icabad Crane,  3rd) – “What can I say? I thought he ran huge. I thought really he was unlucky not to be second. He got stopped pretty bad at the top of the stretch when the frontrunners started backing up. He really had to get him going again, which I thought was really impressive – that he got back up to be third. Big Brown’s a very, very good horse. He’s the real deal. It’s very exciting for the game.” 

Jeremy Rose (jockey, Icabad Crane, 3rd) – “My trip was good to the quarter-pole. I went after Big Brown, but he just threw dirt on me. My horse ran his heart out, and with a little better trip. I may well have gotten second.” 

Ken McPeek (trainer, Racecar Rhapsody, 4th) – “He ran great. I wished he could have found a way inside and we could have gotten a clear second. I think he deserved to be second. He gave his all. The horse ran a good race. He hooked a very, very special horse. Congratulations to Rick Dutrow and Kent Desormeaux. We had a feeling when we ran against him in Florida that we were in the presence of greatness.” 

Robby Albarado (jockey, Racecar Rhapsody, 4th) – “I made my move on the far turn, managed to range up to second, but we were unable to hang on. My horse ran good though.”

Nick Zito (trainer, Stevil,  5th) – “He was in a little tight quarters. I thought he was going to be second because he was following Big Brown. We got excited. He ran fifth, he tried hard. You’ve got to salute the winner. There’s no question he’s a tremendous horse.” 

John Velazquez (jockey, Stevil, 5th) – “I was right behind Big Brown the whole time. I was biding my time there. I tried to get position in the final turn. When Big Brown moved I pulled out, but he just got away. My horse simply flattened out in the lane.” 

Reade Baker (trainer, Kentucky Bear, 6th) – “He stumbled out of the gate and really had no chance after that. The jock thought he should have been second if everything went right. I guess we know that Big Brown is the real deal now.” 

Jamie Theriot (jockey, Kentucky Bear, 6th) – “He slipped leaving the gate bad. We gave up two or three lengths right away. I think I was on the second best horse today. But nothing worked out right for us today.” 

Eddie Plesa (trainer, Hey Byrn, 7th) – “He laid close and was where he needed to be. He was wide going to the first turn and it took its toll on him.” 

Chuck Lopez (jockey, Hey Byrn, 7th) – “My horse broke well. I secured position on the first turn and had a good trip. I followed Big Brown most of the way, but my horse was not just good enough today.” 

Rick  Schosberg (trainer, Giant Moon, 8th) –“We’re just not good enough. It’s probably just a little over his head, no doubt about it. We were wide pretty much the whole way – tough to do that. Our post position caught up with us. My hat’s off to these people. That is one helluva racehorse. 

Ramon Dominguez (jockey, Giant Moon, 8th) – “My horse broke really good. I was in very good position early. But my horse ran a little spotty. Coming into the lane he seemed like he was stopping. Then, when he came into the stretch and changed leads, he started running again. I really don’t have an excuse.”

Beau Greely (trainer, Tres Borrachos, 9th) – “I saw him stumble and Tyler said he went down to his nose. That’s part of horse racing. It can happen to any horse. Tyler thought he came home good, and that’s the important part. We’ll live to fight another day.” 

Tyler Baze (jockey, Tres Borrachos, 9th) – “The break was rough. I was lucky to stay on him. After that, we were last and had to go to Plan B.”

Patrick Gallagher (trainer, Yankee Bravo, 10th) – “He went into the turn and made a nice move inside. From the five-sixteenths (pole) to the three-sixteenths (pole) he was behind a lot of horses. The last part he just struggled. I wonder if it’s the distance. It looks like Big Brown might win the Belmont farther than Secretariat.” 

Alex Solis (jockey, Yankee Bravo, 10th) – “We had a really good trip, actually. We broke fine and my horse was running OK, but he just didn’t handle the track. This is a completely different track than (Santa Anita). He got me really excited at the three-eighths pole, but he just couldn’t handle the surface. 

Paulo Lobo (trainer, Gayego, 11th) – “He didn’t break well and he had to rush up. He did not run as we expected. At this point, we’re going to rest him up.” 

Mike Smith (jockey, Gayego 11th) – “It’s very disappointing. He just doesn’t have it yet. He made the lead easy, but no response to pressure. 

Bill Mott (trainer, Riley Tucker, 12th) – “Big Brown’s a monster. My horse seems fine. He went a little fast early to help produce the pace. Then, I thought he might be in the first flight, but he ended up in the second. 

Edgar Prado (jockey, Riley Tucker (12th) – “My horse broke good, but they came over on me. He ran well, but we just couldn’t keep up with Big Brown.”