Pegasus World Cup Turf (Gulfstream Park) Predictions, Odds & Picks
If you're playing only to win, go with my top pick Anothertwistafate (5/1)
Post Position and Odds – Pegasus World Cup Turf
Check out our predictions and odds for the 2020 Pegasus World Cup Turf at Gulfstream Park!
|D Van Dyke||R Baltas|
|2||BREAKING THE RULES||10/1|
|J Velazquez||C McGaughey|
|3||STORM THE COURT||20/1|
|J Leparoux||P Eurton|
|J Ortiz||C McGaughey|
|I Ortiz Jr||T Pletcher|
|P Lopez||T Pletcher|
|J Bravo||M Maker|
|J Rosario||P Miller|
|T Gaffalione||M Maker|
|E Zayas||M Stidham|
|11||SAY THE WORD||6/1|
|F Prat||P D’Amato|
|L Saez||T Pletcher|
Best Bets for the Pegasus World Cup Turf
Here are my plays ($48 in total)
$5 Exacta Part Wheel – Anothertwistafate over Colonel Liam, Largent and Social Paranoia = $15
$5 Exacta Part Wheel – Colonel Liam, Largent and Social Paranoia over Anothertwistafate = $15
$3 Exacta Box – Anothertwistafate and Storm the Court = $6
$2 Exacta Part Wheel – Storm the Court over Colonel Liam, Largent and Social Paranoia = $6
$2 Exacta Part Wheel – Colonel Liam, Largent and Social Paranoia over Storm the Court = $6
The lightly raced Colonel Liam tops a formidable trio from the barn of Todd Pletcher as a field of 12 older grass specialists are set to compete for the top prize in Saturday’s $1 million Pegasus World Cup Turf Invitational at Gulfstream Park.
The third running of the Grade 1 Pegasus Turf, contested at 1 3/16-miles looks to be a wide-open affair, but three of the top choices all are trained by Pletcher. Colonel Liam has only run five career races but has impressed in his three tries on the grass. Joining the 7-2 morning-line favorite, who was a very impressive winner last month in winning the Tropical Park Derby, are Largent and Social Paranoia.
Largent turned in a career-best last time when rolling from off the pace in the Grade 2 Fort Lauderdale. The consistent son of Into Mischief has never finished worse than second in nine career races, and although this will be his longest race yet, looks to be coming into the Pegasus Turf in excellent form
Social Paranoia, like his two stablemates, also comes in off a win at Gulfstream Park. His victory came by way of a sharp rally in a 7 ½ furlong allowance race. The multiple stakes winner has already won three times over the Gulfstream turf course.
Anothertwistafate, a multiple stakes winner from California who rolled home in the Grade 2 San Gabriel last time at Santa Anita, tops a solid group looking to keep the multiple Eclipse Award-winning trainer out of the Gulfstream Park winner’s circle.
How to Watch the Pegasus World Cup Turf
|Pegasus World Cup Turf Information|
|What||Pegasus World Cup Turf (Grade 1)|
|When||Saturday, January 23 — 4:59 PM Eastern Time|
|How to Watch||NBC Sports and TVG|
While there are certainly more accomplished horses in the field, it appears none have more upside than the son of Liam’s Map. With only three career races on the turf, the Pletcher trainee has already made a name for himself. In two of those starts, he looked like something special in winning for fun, while in the other, he was a troubled fourth, beaten only three-quarters of a length in the rich Saratoga Derby. While he has never faced older horses before, the top two from the Saratoga Derby have proven themselves to be top grass runners. This will be his second acid test, and now more experienced, he might need only a better trip to take home the top prize.
There can be no doubt that Largent was a nice turf horse before the Fort Lauderdale, with five wins and three seconds in eight starts, but his performance in that race five weeks ago was above and beyond anything he had done before. Rocketing home down the lane, he came from well back to beat a solid field going away. Now he adds another sixteenth of a mile and faces an even deeper field. A repeat of that performance could be enough to win on Saturday, but of the three Pletcher runners, he may be the one most overbet. Still, it’s hard to leave him off the tickets.
This one is a very interesting horse. Accomplished on all three surfaces, he seems to have found a home for himself on the turf. After failing in the Preakness two seasons ago, the son of Scat Daddy was off for 16 months before returning style with an easy win in the Longacres Mile. Now trained by Peter Miller, his next two starts came on the grass. After a decent debut, he was most impressive in easily winning the Grade 2 San Gabriel at Santa Anita. Obviously, a classy horse, the winner of a 5-of-10 lifetime now comes to Florida and may have the perfect running style, as there is not much speed in here. He should sit a great stalk and pounce trip. In a wide-open race, I like him the best.
Say the Word
In a funk for some time, he really turned things around in his last four races, beginning with an allowance win at Saratoga of odds of 51-1. He proved that was no fluke, running three solid races in graded stakes company, including a win in Woodbine’s Grade 1 Northern Dancer. He has little early speed, so the fact that his last two races came at 12 furlongs does worry me a bit, as he cuts back to 9 1/2 furlongs. Off his recent form, he is a threat, but I’m not sure he runs down some of the talented horses in here more accustomed to the middle distances.
Third of the three Pletcher horses on the morning line odds, I can not discount this one in any way. Perhaps the post position out in the 12-hole is not ideal, but he certainly likes the Gulfstream turf course, and his return race last time was very good. He also has been the distance effectively, having won even longer in the Dueling Grounds Derby. If he can work out a good mid-pack trip from that outside post, I consider him to be one on a shortlist of most likely winners.
One of two in a row here for trainer Shug McGaughey, the regally bred North Dakota took a long time to finally break his maiden, but when he did, he has made a habit of winning. Most recently, he rallied powerfully to win the Grade 3 Red Smith at Aqueduct. He is clearly better than ever, but for many of the same reasons as Say the Word, I do worry about his lack of speed and is better suited for longer distances. Perhaps if the pace is hotter than expected they have a better shot, but as it is, I will look elsewhere in this tough field for my top picks.
Breaking the Rules
The other McGaughey runner is a threat on his best, but having said that, his only stakes victory came more than two years ago. After disappointing as the choice in back to back stakes races in New York, he made a big move last time in Fort Lauderdale before being swept away late by Largent. With all that said, it’s hard to get overly excited about his chances on Saturday at a distance that may be a little farther than his best.
Storm the Court
As mentioned, there isn’t much pace in this race on paper. Coming out of a sharp front-running second-place finish in the Grade 2 Mathis Brothers Mile last time, this one looks to be the most likely to be sent to the early lead. A former champion, who could not find the winner’s circle at all last year, he should have big odds on Saturday. Despite the winless season, he has performed well enough to know that he has some fight still in him. If the others leave him and rider Julen Leparoux alone on the lead for too long, he could get very brave when the real running begins.
This experienced New York-bred fits the mold of nearly every horse in the race. By that, I mean if he fires his absolute best race, he has a real shot. Unfortunately, the 7-year-old son of the English Channel has only crossed the wire first once in his last ten starts and that came against state-bred company. His last was decent, and I wouldn’t talk anyone off the veteran, but I just like others a bit better.
Though making his first start against older, this City Zip colt is well proven in stakes company, having consistently competed well in good company for most of his career. In the last, he continued to prove that he travels well by visiting New Orleans to rally for the win in the Woodchopper Stakes. This will be the toughest test yet, though, and despite his nice overall record, I believe it will be the class that proves just a little too much for him in the Pegasus Turf.
This one is closing in on the $2 million marks in career earnings, so you know the class is there. Unfortunately, the best days may now be behind this 8-year-old veteran. He has not found a win since November of 2019. Still, he keeps top company and still has days where he looks like a very nice horse. He’s hard to recommend off the losing streak, but stranger things have happened.
Another grizzled 8-year-old veteran has certainly found his share of success over the years. In fact, he earned his biggest career victory last summer when he pocketed the Grade 1 United Nations at Monmouth Park. Three subsequent runs since were not nearly as good, though, so you do have to wonder if he is losing a step. Like many, if he fires his best, he could surprise, but the recent form says no.
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Taken to the races at a very young age, Brian has been a passionate fan of horse racing his entire life. Professionally, his work has been published on several leading industry sites. Brian served as the Editor of Horse Racing Nation from 2010-2017, where he still writes a regular column and hosts the popular weekly webcast HorseCenter.
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