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Quotes from the $200,000 Hagyard Fayette (G2)

October 29, 2016

LEXINGTON, KY (Oct. 29) – Quotes from the $200,000 Hagyard Fayette (G2):

Click here for a replay of the race

Click here for the post-race interview with the winning connections

Norman Casse (assistant to his father, Mark Casse, winning trainer of Noble Bird)

“I think we are figuring him out a little bit. He is a horse that if there is a lot of speed in the race he is a little bit more compromised. We have to pick races where he can take things on his own and that is what we did today. We were actually just trying to get him a race today and really point to the Clark (G1) (at Churchill Downs on Nov. 25).”

On Mark Casse winning his third Keeneland meet title as leading trainer

“Keeneland is obviously a wonderful place and it’s where it all starts for a lot of our horses. It’s a dream come true, it’s a company effort. There’s a lot of people involved and a lot of people should be proud of today. I know we are and I know Dad certainly is.”

Julien Leparoux (winning rider)

“I just left him alone. He ran his race and in the stretch I tried to encourage him. I knew we were going fast and when I asked him, he came on nice at the end. It was a good race. I didn’t know (he set a track record), but when this horse is on his ‘A’ game and everything is good for him, he’s a very nice horse for sure.”

On winning his 11th Keeneland meet title as leading jockey

“It’s great. It’s my favorite track. I know a lot of people who are here. The people here are big fans. It’s always a pleasure to win a title here.”

Florent Geroux (rider of runner-up Divining Rod)

“I had a great trip stalking on the outside. He was relaxed. I thought I had a chance to maybe catch the winner turning for home, but when Julien (Leparoux on winner Noble Bird) asked his horse, he rebroke and opened up. My horse ran great and he clearly was second best.”

Miguel Mena (rider of third-place finisher Hawaakom)

“He shows up every time. (His owners) claimed him for $15,000. He’s been so good for these people. He tries every time.”

James Graham (rider of fourth-place finisher Mr. Z)

“I had a good trip. The eight horse (Divining Rod) moved a little sooner than I thought he might, but I didn’t go with him then. I ran fourth and ran a good race.”