Pegasus World Cup Future Book

There are three big-money jewels in the opening quarter of the year and the Pegasus World Cup Invitational at Gulfstream Park opens proceedings, followed by the Saudi Cup in February and the Dubai World Cup in March. Three weeks out from the $3 million face-off in Florida, we examine the prospects of the leading contenders for the first major prize of 2023. Here our Pegasus World Cup Future Book Preview

Pegasus World Cup Invitational

G1, $3,000,000, 1m 1f dirt, 4yo+, Gulfstream Park, January 28

Last year’s Pegasus World Cup was a real show-stopper, Life Is Good vs Knicks Go in a thrilling match-up, and although this year’s race doesn’t have the same stand-out quality, at this early stage it is a much more open contest with several holding a big chance.

The future-book favourite is Cyberknife, for whom this is a final appearance before being retired to stud. He won the G1 Arkansas Derby and G1 Haskell at this distance before hitting the board in three more G1s, culminating in a gallant defeat in the Breeders’ Cup Dirt Mile at Keeneland when beaten a head by the speedier Cody’s Wish, with Simplification seventh, never in the mix.

He’s tactically versatile, excels at this distance while still having more than his share of speed, and sets the standard in this company.

Former nearly-horse Proxy made his stakes breakthrough in the G1 Clark over a mile-eighth at Churchill Downs, pressing the pace before taking control late, with Last Samurai beaten seven lengths into fourth. However, it wasn’t a strong field and although he should move forward from what was his first start for five months, he’ll need more this time.

PEGASUS WORLD CUP ODDS

California shipper Defunded ended last year on a high, going gate-to-wire in the G1 Awesome Again at Santa Anita to see off the high-class Country Grammer before easily beating overmatched rivals in the G3 Native Diver at Del Mar, both races at a mile-eighth. The standard is higher here but he is in the form of his life and could be very dangerous on the lead.

The first four home from the G3 Harlan’s Holiday over this track at a mile-sixteenth are expected to reoppose. Skippylongstocking ran out a dominant winner by two lengths from early leader Pioneer Of Medina, who had a neck to spare over Simplification, who had two lengths in hand over the winner’s barnmate O’Connor, whose disappointing showing can be partly explained by his losing a shoe.

Skippylongstocking gives his best at Gulfstream Park, which goes too for another barnmate White Abarrio, who won the G1 Florida Derby over course and distance in April but hasn’t won since, although he showed a little sparkle when beaten just three-quarters of a length into third in the G1 Cigar Mile at Aqueduct. Both horses need to find more if they are to figure although home territory can count for plenty.

Get Her Number was a half-length ahead of White Abarrio when arguably running a career-best in that Cigar Mile and could appeal to exotics players, as may last year’s Pegasus World Cup third Stilleto Boy, although the latter is just three-for-19 lifetime and makes no appeal for the win. Art Collector won the mile-eighth G2 Charles Town Classic for a second time in August, but lacked the fizz of his 2021 campaign and may no longer have the legs at the age of six.

Pegasus World Cup Future Book Early Prediction

Cyberknife has the most obvious chance, but DEFUNDED is already a G1 winner, is in the form of his life and could well be capable of better yet.

Pegasus World Cup Odds courtesy of JazzSports

HORSEODDS BY JAZZSPORTS
Cyberknife+200
Defunded+400
Proxy+400
Skippylongstocking+850
White Abarrio+1000
Simplification+1500
Art Collector+2000
O’Connor+3000
Super Corinto+3000
Pioneer Of Medina+4000
Stilleto Boy+7500

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