$75,000 El Prado Quotes
Trainer David Kassen (Nikki's Sandcastle)
(Were you concerned drawing the No. 14 post): "I really was. We were really serious about scratching because of that. We had another race down the road in Texas we're kind of planning for so I said, 'This will be just a good prep for it even if we don't win.' Rather than having to do a lot of training I'd just as soon run him. So it worked out good.
"He's a nice horse, runs good over this thing (Gulfstream). The jock rode him good. He looped the field but that's all it took. Stay out of trouble."
(Will you go to Texas for the John Connally (G3) Jan. 26): "We're thinking about that. We could stay here. There's a $200,000 out there 1 1/8th mile on the turf. it will probably be a lot softer than the horses we'd have to run against here. We'll play it by ear. I'd prefer to stay here rather than ship 2,000 miles. But $200,000 is $200,00."
Jockey Corey Lanerie (Nikki's Sandcastle): “He broke really well and my instructions were to move him away from there and send him a little bit and save some ground. About halfway through the first turn I looked over my shoulder and saw about five or six of them and realized the plan wasn’t going to work so I started to ease her back. We got bumped a little, but was able to save ground. The fractions felt fast but I didn’t panic. He showed me a lot of confidence and finished very well. I was a little concerned about breaking from post position 14, but I felt in my heart that this horse could come from off the pace. We tried to do what Mr. Kassen wanted and it worked out in the end. Now we know he can do it.”