The work left the colt wide-eyed and ready. In the days leading up to the Marlboro, Barrera made daily reference to it. When a writer came by to talk about It's the One, his other horse, Barrera steered him toward Lemhi Gold, and it soon became evident whose chances he liked better. "He worked 57 and [4/5]ths [for five furlongs] and galloped out in nine and change [1:09-plus for six]," Barrera would say. "You don't think he likes the track? He can't look better. He's very good right now and he can beat anybody in the race.... I don't see no reason why he can't win on the dirt.... Don't overlook this horse."
If getting into the race required last-minute scrambling, so did finding a rider. Barrera named Angel Cordero to ride him, but on Thursday Cordero announced he would be on Silver Supreme—to fulfill a promise he had made to that horse's trainer, Richard DeStasio. So Barrera reached out and touched Vasquez. On Saturday it was all over coming to the turn for home. Jones's optimism had been justified. "He proved today that he can run anywhere," he said. As for Vasquez, all he really had to do was sit there. "Hey," said the winner, "I got to thank Cordero."