May 06, 2018 Churchill Downs Communications

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (Saturday, May 5, 2018):

Bob Baffert, trainer of Justify (1st), Solomini (10th) “We saw something really great. That’s greatness right there. When he won his second race we were in (American) Pharoah territory.”

On Solomini: “I knew he was up against it, especially since we were going to try something different with him. You have to take a chance. He earned his way and he ran 10th and there were some good horses behind him.”

Chad Brown, trainer of Good Magic (2nd) – “I’m very proud of him. He attended a very fast pace. We knew going in that Justify looked like a big monster and we didn’t want to be too far away. Jose (Ortiz) executed it perfect. I asked him to follow him even if the pace was a little quick to keep him in close range. We thought he was the horse to beat and it was true. Very proud of our horse. He held on for second there. We’re working our way toward that winner’s circle. It wasn’t to be this year. It was a tough field. But I’m real proud of this horse. He kept fighting all the way to the end and he showed that he’s a top-class horse.”

Todd Pletcher, trainer of Audible (3rd), Vino Rosso (9th), Noble Indy (17), Magnum Moon (19th) – “Audible ran best of our horses. Javier (Castellano) told me he couldn’t get going early in the race. He said the horse had trouble with the track and the kickback. He just couldn’t get him going. It’s frustrating when something like this happens. Javier said he thought he might have been on the best horse if he could have got going earlier. Magnum Moon, Luis (Saez) said he didn’t like the track at all. He said the kickback got to him. Johnny (Velazquez) said Vino Rosso didn’t like it (the track) either. He just didn’t want to be out there. Florent (Geroux) on Noble Indy got his trip; he just wasn’t good enough.”

Jerry Hollendorfer, trainer of Instilled Regard (4th) – “We ran fourth. It's a lot better than running back more than that. I'm not sure what we'll do, but I think we'll freshen him up (after this race).”

Keith Desormeaux, trainer of My Boy Jack (5th) – “He got stopped cold. Awesome performance to recover and run fifth. Love, love, love his heart.”

D. Wayne Lukas, trainer of Bravazo (6th) – He ran really well. I’m very pleased. He was in contention at the eighth pole. His odds were 69-1 and he ran way better than that.”

Bill Mott, trainer of Hofburg (7th) – “His trip was a bit rough.”

Tom Amoss, trainer of Lone Sailor (8th) – “It started out really, really good. We had a good position inside. We were making up some ground and then on the backside we had to wait behind a horse that was stopping. We were forced to drop back and re-rally and that’s tough to do. We’re very proud of our horse.”

Jason Servis, trainer of Firenze Fire (11th) – “He ran great and we beat the odds to get here.”

Mick Ruis, trainer of Bolt d’Oro (12th) – “We all had a thrill. Mr. (B. Wayne) Hughes was having a thrill and was like 'wow' and we were all excited. I was excited. Then, when the real running started, he just didn't have it. Victor (Espinoza) said he tapped him a few times and when he didn't respond, he knew he was in trouble and he just didn't feel like beating him up. We'll see how he comes back and scope him; see if there was any mucus or anything like that. We'll see how his legs are and in a few days we'll go from there. He's always been a nice sound horse. We'll just see what he does.

Mark Casse, trainer of Flameaway (13th) – “Jose (Lezcano) said he was running real nice and he felt good and thought he was doing good. Said he switched leads and then he started backing up. So I am just going back to make sure he is OK.”

Kiaran McLaughlin, trainer of Enticed (14th) – “We just got bounced around a lot. Congrats to the top three, especially the winner, who’s a freak. My horse didn’t like the conditions today but we’ll regroup.”

Dale Romans, trainer of Promises Fulfilled (15th), Free Drop Billy (16th) – On Promises Fulfilled: “He (Justify) was right next to us the whole way and we just weren’t able to hold him off. It was an unbelievable performance by the winner, on this track, going that fast. He never stopped. He may be a super horse.”

On Free Drop Billy: “He was laying in position, but it looked like he was never getting a hold of (the track). I don’t know.”

Steve Asmussen, trainer of Combatant (18th) – “The draw just crushed him. He went about a mile and a half today. There's nothing anybody can do about it. The winner was brilliant. It'll be exciting to watch Justify go on.”

Aidan O’Brien, trainer of Mendelssohn (20th) – “He just got knocked over coming out of the gate and then he got knocked over again going into the first bend, but he'll be fine. He was never used to getting that much kickback. It's a totally different experience, you know, so, we'll be fine. We'll take him home and give him a break and come back (for the Breeders' Cup Classic). We'll look forward to the Classic with him.”

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