Breeders’ Cup Dirt Mile Transcript

Press Conference

THE MODERATOR: We’re back live in the press conference room with the connections of Breeders’ Cup Dirt Mile winner, City of Light. It’s a family affair for the Warrens. Left to right is and Andrew Warren. Next to Andrew is Suzanne Warren. Her husband, William Warren. And on the far right, John-Kelly Warren.

So congratulations to all four of you. City of Light has been an incredibly consistent horse and just put forward a very dominating kind of, I imagine for — as races go this was sort of a fun, even somewhat calm one maybe for an owner, with the possible exception of the first hundred yards.

WILLIAM WARREN: Well, no, I don’t think it was calm.

(Laughter.)

I was very nervous, as a matter of fact, and just was hoping that we would get a good trip out of this and we had a great jockey and a great trainer and that did give me a lot of confidence, so to speak. But I would have to say I’m never calm in these races because it’s so exciting to the Warren family. And I’m so proud that my two sons and wife are owners of City of Light with me. That makes it so special. I’m just so proud of our horse. I just have believed in him and I feel really great that we beat Accelerate over in Arkansas and now we beat Catalina Cruiser. So I think that speaks beautifully for City of Light. We have so much fun with him. He’s like part of the family. We go to the barn early in the morning and my wife just loves to tease him. And even John-Kelly’s wife was with us this morning and he kept biting her bow on her blouse and we were wondering if we were going to get here today.

(Laughter.)

THE MODERATOR: Very good, William.

Suzanne, you and William were not here literally, but in the winner’s circle of the Breeders’ Cup classic back in 2005, a win that ultimately led to horse of the year honors. Does today bring back any of those great feelings from 13 years ago?

SUZANNE WILLIAMS: Oh, of course it does. We’re always — you’re never sure, you never know, you never know what’s going to happen. But we had a lot of confidence in this horse and no matter what he’s so beautiful, so athletic. Michael brought him along beautifully. He didn’t race a lot early on because of his size, because he just wasn’t ready. So we knew this was his moment and we hoped he would have a good trip. We weren’t crazy about the number one hole, but it prevailed and we are thrilled beyond words.

THE MODERATOR: John-Kelly, your father was rattling off the John Sadler trainees that City of Light has vanquished during the year. While watching the race were you sort of keeping one eye on your horse and another eye on Catalina Cruiser?

JOHN-KELLY WARREN: I had my eyes on City of Light the whole time. And, well, if I had another eye on something, it was the rest of my family, who was up there as well, and just to see them so excited, I don’t think I’ve heard Andrew yell so much in my life.

WILLIAM WARREN: He was pounding my shoulder.

JOHN-KELLY WARREN: Yeah, and I was pounding his shoulder too. So my eyes were on City of Light the whole time. I knew he had to break quickly out of the one position and he did. And I noticed in the other races that the horse who was in the number one position faded. So I was especially pleased to see City of Light continue and lead throughout the whole race.

THE MODERATOR: Andrew, what was it like from your perspective watching the race and being part of this great year that City of Light’s had, races judiciously spaced by Michael McCarthy, but what was it like for you watching him get around the track on top and near wire-to-wire fashion?

ANDREW WILLIAMS: I knew it was going to be very exciting, but it was a lot more exciting than I anticipated even. So it was incredible and I just thought he’s got the talent to win, so he just needs a really good ride and I think it was the perfect ride and got a great trip. But, man, it’s been really, really exciting, it’s been a fantastic year. Just amazing to be in this position. It’s a once in a lifetime opportunity, so, so exciting.

THE MODERATOR: I’ll ask one more question before we throw it open to the media, but William, fill us in, if you would, on future plans for City of Light. Does he have a stud deal locked up? He’s basically like an automatic triple digit buyer horse so you would think you would have a lot of appeal, especially breeders love those milers. What are his, what’s on the drawing board for on the schedule for City of Light.

WILLIAM WARREN: He will race until the middle of February. I think our next race is in the Cigar Mile at Aqueduct. That’s what we’re aiming for next. But in July Suzanne and I went to Lexington, and Andrew as well, but we visited nine farms who had expressed an interest in breeding City of Light and it was a great experience for us because to go to those farms and meet the management and not only see their mares but their stallions. I really have never been into the business in the sense of knowing a lot of the farms and it was a very educational thing for me, but we made a deal with Lane’s End and that’s where he’ll stand about the middle of February.

THE MODERATOR: All right. And you mentioned February. Does that mean the Pegasus is sort of on your radar screen?

WILLIAM WARREN: Yes.

(Laughter.)

THE MODERATOR: I thought it might be. Okay. Questions?

Q. How did you pick the name City of Light?
WILLIAM WARREN: Well, the mare’s name was Paris Notion and the Suzanne and I had been to Paris several times and actually at that time Flavien Prat was riding for Michael McCarthy quite a bit and I chatted quite a bit with Flavien and it all just made sense since he’s from France and the mare’s name was Paris and that City of Light was a natural name.

Q. William, one last question, if I forced you to pick one distance what do you think is City of Light’s very best? He’s been very versatile, he didn’t win in a mile and a quarter, but he ran a what, a 1:03 Buyer at a mile and a quarter, so it’s not like he’s really distance limited. With a gun to your head what’s his favorite trip?
WILLIAM WARREN: Well, I would maybe ask John-Kelly or Andrew that my opinion is I think he’s good for a mile and an eighth, maybe more. Michael and I talked quite a bit about entering in the Classic, but we knew that he was a miler for sure, but he won at a mile and an eighth in Arkansas and so I think he’s capable of that distance, John-Kelly or Andrew? Do you want to tune in to that?

Q. Andrew?
ANDREW WARREN: I would say anywhere from seven eighths of a mile to a mile and an eighth he’s very strong. So I think he’s good at all those distances, in my opinion.

JOHN-KELLY WARREN: Yeah and given his size it’s great to see him run that far. But I would agree. I think we’re all in agreement.

THE MODERATOR: All right. Well, the folks here in Kentucky were very happy to see your horse and I know the fans in New York will be in four weeks from now as well, so Andrew Warren, Suzanne Warren, William Warren, John-Kelly Warren congratulations on an authoritative victory by your horse, City of Light.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports
Rev #1 by #176 at 2018-11-03 18:01:00 GMT

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