By Michael Patricks
The Pegasus Word Cup is set for Saturday, January 26th from Gulfstream Park and the Jockey Club will be open at 10 a.m. with full coverage. The day features the $7,000,000 Pegasus World Cup Turf Invitational for older horses alongside the grand daddy of them all, the $9,000,000 Pegasus World Cup Invitational which is the world’s richest horse race.
2018 horse-of-the-year nominee Accelerate will headline the overheard marquee. Out to challenge him in earnest will be the Bob Baffert-trained McKinzie, Chad Brown-trained Patternrecognition, and Mike McCarthy-trained City of Light. Local hope Gunnevera is set to run and so is Florida Derby-winning Audible who is trained by Todd Pletcher.
Magic Wind, Delta Prince, Yoshida, Next Shares, Bricks and Mortar, Aerolithe and Catapult are all expected to contest the $7,000,000 turf invitational.
The Jockey Club will offer food and drink specials for this big day of racing. Also, make sure to join us on February 3rd for Super Bowl LIII live from the Jockey Club. After the races, we will offer free admission for the game along with food and drink specials throughout. Tell your friends and make plans to join us for the Pegasus World Cup and Super Bowl LIII. Call 707-524-6340 for all the details.
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Back to the handicapping world we go with a closer look at the 7th race at Golden Gate Fields on Saturday.
Take: # 2 Happy Issue 7/2
These Starter Allowance $12,500 fillies and mares are foes who are familiar with one another and it should be pointed out that this event has come up extremely salty in the speed department. # 1 Blessed Lady (8/1), # 3 Raiderette (8/1), # 4 One Eyed Mama (2/1) and # 5 Princess Ashlyn (5/2) all like to have their head in front early. # 2 Happy Issue and # 6 Brookes All Mine (9/2) are the confirmed off-the-pace types, but Happy Issue looks like the clear play to me in this race.
Happy Issue took care of Brooke’s All Mine three races back when claimed for $16,000. The Elusive Warning mare came back with a solid effort off the claim, narrowly missing against $25,000 sellers. She was up on the pace at the same level in her most-previous start, but that race had a very soft opening quarter-mile and ranging up three-wide around the far turn led to her demise without question. There is no doubt that Happy Issue does her best running with a target in front of her and she’ll have every opportunity to work out a nice trip with cover given her inside post. Solis and Sherman are 31% together and I love that the other Sherman trainee One Eyed Mama looks like a guarantor to a solid tempo. What’s even more enticing, Sherman has equity in Happy Issue on her ownership line.
Princess Ashlynn looks tough on Beyers and the rider switch should be a positive in her corner, but she’s 0-for-6 on synthetic and I think the turf Beyers are a bit of a falsity transitioning over to synthetic. If she can stalk and pounce, she might prove tough. But she’s off a layoff in this spot and I can see her getting perched wide causing her to once again falter, similar to that of Happy Issue on December 30th.
Make Happy Issue part of your late race horizontals.
Good luck on Saturday.