(Cyberknife / Photos by Holly M. Smith)
From the Gulfstream Park Media Team:
The $3 million Pegasus World Cup Invitational (G1) presented by Baccarat Jan. 28 at Gulfstream Park remains largely unchanged with Grade 1 winners Cyberknife, Defunded and Proxy prominent on Wednesday’s final list of invitations.
There are no changes from the first two invitation lists for the 7th running of the 1 1/8-mile stakes for older horses that headlines a program of eight stakes, seven graded, worth $5.3 million in purses including the $1 million Pegasus World Cup Turf Invitational (G1) presented by Qatar Racing and $500,000 TAA Pegasus Filly & Mare Turf Invitational (G3) presented by Pepsi.
Post positions will be drawn between Gulfstream’s live races Sunday, Jan. 22 and be broadcast at PegasusWorldCup.com and Facebook.com/PegasusWorldCup.
Gold Square’s Cyberknife, a multiple Grade 1-winning son of 2018 Pegasus World Cup champion Gun Runner, was one of the most successful 3-year-olds in 2022, winning the Arkansas Derby (G1) and Haskell Invitational (G1) and finishing second in the Breeders’ Cup Dirt Mile (G1), beaten a head by Cody’s Wish.
Scheduled to make his final career start in the Pegasus before embarking on a stallion career, Cyberknife is trained by Brad Cox, who saddled Knicks Go for a victory in the 2021 Pegasus World Cup prior to the 2021 Horse of the Year’s runner-up finish last year behind Life Is Good.
Hall of Famer Bob Baffert, who saddled Arrogate for a Pegasus World Cup triumph in 2017, trains Karl Watson, Michael Pegram and Paul Weitman’s Defunded, a 4-year-old gelded son of Dialed In that closed out the 2022 season with victories in the Awesome Again (G1) and Native Diver (G3). Godolphin’s Proxy, trained by Michael Stidham, is a 5-year-old homebred son of Tapit that earned Grade 1 credentials in the Clark (G1) at Churchill Downs, his 2022 finale.
C2 Racing Stable and La Milagrosa Stable’s White Abarrio, Gary Barber’s Get Her Number, Bruce Lunsford’s Art Collector Jet Set Racing Stable’s Super Corinto and Fernando Vine Ode’s O’Connor are other Grade 1 or Group 1 winners among the top dozen invitees.
White Abarrio won the $1 million Curlin Florida Derby (G1) going 1 1/8 miles last April at Gulfstream and is trained by defending Championship Meet leader Saffie Joseph Jr., also represented on the invite list by Daniel Alonso’s Skippylongstocking, third-place finisher in the Belmont Stakes (G1) who capped his sophomore season by winning the Harlan’s Holiday (G3) Dec. 31 at Gulfstream, and Chilean Group 1 winner O’Connnor.
Get Her Number won the American Pharoah (G1) in 2020 and was twice Grade 1-placed in 2022 including a second in the Cigar Mile, a half-length ahead of White Abarrio. Art Collector won the 2021 Woodward (G1) and successfully defended his Charles Town Classic (G2) title in 2022. Like O’Connor, Super Corinto parlayed a Group 1 victory in Chile into wins at Gulfstream.
Grade 2 winner Stilleto Boy, third in last year’s Pegasus World Cup; Simplification, winner of the Fountain of Youth (G2) last winter at Gulfstream; and Oaklawn Handicap (G2) winner Last Samurai round out the top 12 invitations.
Woodward runner-up Law Professor was removed from the reserve list leaving it at four (in order of preference): Greenwood Cup (G3) winner Ridin With Biden; Hoist the Gold, third last out in the Malibu (G1); Endorsed, fourth in last year’s Pegasus World Cup; and Arkansas Derby runner-up Barber Road.
California Racing Partners, Ciaglia Racing and Ryan Hanson’s One More Bid, last out winner of the Mathis Mile (G2) Dec. 26 at Santa Anita, was added to the main invitation list for the Pegasus Turf following the defection of Grade 1 winner In Love, the only changes in the top 12.
Two-time defending champion Colonel Liam continues to top invitees to the Pegasus Turf. Robert and Lawana Low’s 6-year-old finished sixth in the Dec. 31 Fort Lauderdale (G2) at Gulfstream, his first race in 281 days. He is joined by City Man and Grade 1 winner Decorated Invader, respectively 1-2 in the Fort Lauderdale for trainer Christophe Clement.
The main invitees include Ivar, a Brazilian-bred multiple Group 1 winner in Argentina that won the 2020 Shadwell Turf Mile (G1); Master Piece, winner of the Eddie Read (G2) and second in the Del Mar Handicap (G2); Hollywood Derby (G1) winner Speaking Scout; Who’s the Star, riding a three-race win streak in the Durham Cup (G3), Autumn (G2) and Valedictory (G3) on Woodbine’s all-weather surface; and 2022 Bay Shore (G3) winner Wit, third by less than a length in the Hollywood Derby.
Jordan Wycoff’s Atone has placed four times in graded-stakes including the 2021 Fort Lauderdale and most recently the Mint Million (G3) last fall at Kentucky Downs. He ran fourth behind Colonel Liam, beaten 1 ¾ lengths, in the 2022 Pegasus Turf. Trainer Mike Maker won the Pegasus Turf with Zulu Alpha in 2020.
Charles Fipke’s Lady Speightspeare is the lone female on the invitation list. The 5-year-old Speightstown mare owns four career graded-stakes wins – the 2020 Natalma (G1) and 2022 Nassau (G2), Trillium (G3) and Seaway (G3), all at Woodbine. She exits a third in the Breeders’ Cup Filly & Mare Turf (G1) Nov. 5 at Keeneland.
Team Valor et. al’s Hurricane Dream has been group-stakes placed four times in Europe that has yet to race in the U.S. He was beaten a head when second in the one-mile Brunner Oettingen Rennen (G2) last September in Germany.
Cellist, Law Professor and Street Ready came off the Pegasus Turf reserve list, which now includes, in preferred order, multiple graded-stakes placed Good Governance, fourth last out in the Fort Lauderdale; 2022 Knickerbocker (G3) winner King Cause; and Dark Shift, winner of the Royal Hunt Cup last summer at Royal Ascot.
The Pegasus Filly & Mare Turf saw Grade 3 winner Kate’s Kingdom and Stolen Holiday, winner of the Dec. 31 Suwannee River (G3) at Gulfstream, removed from the main invite list and replaced by Spirit and Glory and Sweet Enough.
Trevor Harris’ Sweet Enough was elevated from the reserve list. Trained by Hall of Famer Roger Attfield, Sweet Enough won three times in her native England before coming to the U.S., where she capped 2022 with an optional claiming allowance victory going 1 1/16 miles Dec. 29 at Gulfstream.
Michael Nentwig, Michael Dubb, Beast Mode Racing, John Rochfort and Robert Falcone Jr.’s Spirit and Glory is an Irish-bred mare that has won two of six North American starts topped by the Virginia Oaks last fall at Colonial Downs. Last out the 4-year-old ran fourth in the Tropical Park Oaks Dec. 26 at Gulfstream.
British-bred Lady Rockstar, by Frankel, was second by a length in the Suwannee River. Perseverancia exits a runner-up finish to Dalika in the Nov. 24 Cardinal (G3) while Scotish Star, third in the Chillingworth (G3) on dirt at Santa Anita last fall, finished sixth as the favorite in the Suwannee River.
Bridlewood Farm’s multiple stakes winner Bay Storm captured the Incredible Revenge last summer at Monmouth Park and ended her 2022 season running second by a nose in the Mint Ladies Sprint (G3) at Kentucky Downs and third after setting the pace in the one-mile Suwannee River.
Artie’s Princess, Dalika, Justify My Love, Queen Goddess, Shantisara and Wakanaka remain from the initial list. Shantisara earned Grade 1 credentials while winning the 2021 Queen Elizabeth II Stakes at Keeneland and is trained by Chad Brown, who saddled Regal Glory for a victory in the 2022 Pegasus World Cup Filly & Mare Turf.
Wakanaka, who is trained by Hall of Famer Bill Mott, captured the Fall Harvest to conclude a productive 2022 season that included a victory in the Dance Smartly (G2) at Woodbine and a runner-up finish behind Regal Glory in the Just a Game (G1) at Belmont. Al Stall Jr.-trained Dalika, a hard-hitting 7-year-old daughter of Pastorius, earned Grade 1 credentials with a victory in the Beverly D. (G1) at Churchill Downs in August and also won the Ladies Turf (G3) at Kentucky Downs and the Cardinal (G3) at Churchill.
2021 American Oaks (G1) and 2022 Santa Ana (G3) and Robert J. Frankel (G3) winner Queen Goddess is trained by Michael McCarthy, who saddled City of Light for a victory in the 2019 Pegasus World Cup. Artie’s Princess won the Presque Isle Masters (G2) for defending Championship Meet leading trainer Saffie Joseph Jr., while Justify My Love is a Brazilian-bred Group 2 winner in Argentina that hails from the same connections as Ivar.
The lone horse on the reserve list is new addition Mona Stella, owned by Reeves Thoroughbred Racing, Andie Biancone and Patrick Biancone. The multiple stakes-placed Mona Stella exits a solid runner-up finish as the favorite in the one-mile Sunshine Filly & Mare Turf Jan. 14 at Gulfstream.
$3 Million Pegasus World Cup (G1) Final Invitation List:
- Art Collector
- Get Her Number
- Last Samurai
- O’Connor (CHI)
- Stilleto Boy
- Super Corinto (ARG)
- White Abarrio
Reserve List (in order of preference):
- Ridin With Biden
- Hoist the Gold
- Barber Road
$1 Million Pegasus World Cup Turf (G1) Final Invitation List:
- City Man
- Colonel Liam
- Decorated Invader
- Hurricane Dream (FR)
- Ivar (BRZ)
- Lady Speightspeare
- Master Piece (CHI)
- One More Bid
- Speaking Scout
- Who’s the Star
Reserve List (in order of preference):
- Good Governance (GB)
- King Cause
- Dark Shift (GB)
$500,000 Pegasus World Cup Filly & Mare Turf (G3) Final Invitation List:
- Artie’s Princess
- Bay Storm
- Dalika (GER)
- Justify My Love (BRZ)
- Lady Rockstar (GB)
- Queen Goddess
- Scottish Star (ARG)
- Shantisara (IRE)
- Spirit and Glory (IRE)
- Sweet Enough (GB)
- Wakanaka (IRE)
- Mona Stella