The Thoroughbred season has a pair of marquee races on tap Saturday at Florida’s Gulfstream Park.
The $3M Pegasus World Cup has a field of 12 horses that will race 1 1/8 miles, the 12th race on the card. Prior to it is the 1 3/16 miles Pegasus World Cup Turf, with a $1M purse, that also has 12 horses in its field.
|1||Sleepy Eyes Todd||+800|
|6||Kiss Today Goodbye||+1000|
|8||Harpers First Ride||+1000|
|10||Code of Honor||+400|
Pegasus World Cup Field
Post Horse/Best Beyer Trainer/Jockey
1 Sleepy Eyes Todd, 102, Miguel Angel Silva, Jose Ortiz 8-1
Comment: Has won two in a row at shorter distances. Stretches out and comes off a victory in the Mr. Prospector at Gulfstream. Feels a bit overmatched.
2 Coastal Defense, 100, Dale Romans, Corey Lanerie, 15-1
Comment: Has not won in two tries at the distance or over the Gulfstream surface. Would be a shocker.
3 Independence Hall, 101, Michael McCarthy, Flavien Prat 20-1
Comment: Was soundly beaten by Charlatan in Malibu. The best Beyer was the 101 in November 2019. Has not reached that level since. It is going to take far more to compete against this talented field.
4 Knicks Go, 108, Brad Cox, Joel Rosario 5-2
Comment: The Breeders’ Cup Dirt Mile winner in stunning fashion. The Brad Cox trainee has captured his last three races by a total of more than 20 lengths. He keeps climbing the Beyer scale hitting 108 in his last effort. A repeat of the BC Dirt Mile means everyone else is going to have their hooves full.
5 Jesus’ Team, 102, Jose D’Angelo, Irad Ortiz, Jr., 8-1
Comment: Clearly beaten by Knicks Go in BC Dirt Mile but came back to win a stake at Gulfstream. Is 3-1-1 in six starts over this surface. Could be the horse of the course.
6 Kiss Today Goodbye, 101, J. Eric Kruljac, Mike Smith 10-1
Comment: Shows one triple-digit Beyer figure and that was in a third-place finish at Del Mar. This one doesn’t seem to have the numbers to compete against top-shelf foes.
7 Tax, 105, Danny Gargan, Luis Saez, 5-1
Comment: Ran a career-best race in the last. Have to be concerned about the bounce factor after that 105 Beyer. The Dec. 12 victory was 5-year-old’s first since July 2019. Light-bulb angle?
8 Harpers First Ride, 101, Claudio Gonzalez, Angel Cruz, 10-1
Comment: Maryland invader is 10-for-17 lifetime, including four wins in the last five starts. Will be tested for class in a big way against Pegasus field.
9 Last Judgement, 103, Michael Maker, Paco Lopez, 20-1
Comment: Was no match for Sleepy Eyes Todd in Mr. Prospector. Rebounded to win his last start but this bunch is a far tougher field than he faced in the last out.
10 Code of Honor, 106, Shug McGaughey, Tyler Gaffalione, 9-2
Comment: The picture of consistency has been worst than fourth once in 15 career starts. The biggest concern has to be the four-race losing streak he brings into this race. Capable of throwing a big number and should be used in exotic bets of all kinds.
11 Mr. Freeze, 107, Dale Romans, John Velazquez, 15-1
Comment: Mr. Freeze has one win in his last five starts, an ominous sign heading into the $3,000,00 race. Finished behind Code of Honor and Knicks Go in his last two races.
12 Math Wizard, 100, Saffie Joseph, Jr., Edgard Zayas, 20-1
Comment: The surprise winner of the 2019 Pennsylvania Derby has not seen the winner’s circle since that start, seven races ago. Would be borderline stunning out of this post.
The picks: 1) Knicks Go 2) Jesus’ Team 3) Code of Honor
The field & ML odds for the G1 Pegasus World Cup Turf Invitational at Gulfstream Park!
— TVG (@TVG) January 20, 2021
The picks: 1) Largent 2) Anothertwistafate 3) North Dakota
Saturday marks the 5th running of the #PegasusWorldCup! Take a look back with @TVGMike on how the race has evolved over the years.
— TVG (@TVG) January 22, 2021