Pegasus World Cup invitations announced

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The Pegasus World Cup Championship Invitational Series has announced the horses invited to run in the 2020 Pegasus World Cup (G1) and in the Pegasus World Cup Turf (G1) on Saturday, January 25 at Gulfstream Park.

Maximum Security headlines the list of 12 horses (plus five reserves) invited to run in the $3 million Pegasus World Cup, which runs 1 1/8 miles on the dirt at Gulfstream Park. However, the three-time G1 winner is expected to skip Pegasus in favor of the inaugural $20 million Saudi Cup.

Trained by Jason Servis and owned by Gary and Mary West, Maximum Security crossed the wire first in the 2019 Kentucky Derby but was then disqualified on the track for impeding the forward motion of War of Will. The colt by New Year’s Day won the G1 Florida Derby to qualify for the Kentucky Derby, claimed the G1 Haskell in July and finished out the year with a win in the G1 Cigar Mile Handicap.

Bob Baffert’s 5-year-old McKinzie also received an invitation to the Pegasus World Cup after finishing out 2019 with back-to-back second places in the Awesome Again Stakes (G1) in September and in the $6 million Breeders’ Cup Classic (G1) in November. Other invitees include early 2019 Kentucky Derby favorite Omaha Beach, who was scratched from the Derby with an entrapped epiglottis; 2019 Breeders’ Cup Dirt Mile winner Spun to Run; and Aidan O’Brien’s Ireland-based Magic Wand, who was also invited to the Pegasus World Cup Turf.

Other Turf invitees include Calumet Farm’s Channel Cat, 2019 Belmont Derby Invitational (G1) winner Helney’s Joy and three Chad Brown-trained horses (Instilled Regard, Without Parole and reserve horse Sacred Life). Brown trained last year’s Pegasus World Cup Turf winner Bricks and Mortar. City of Lights won the last year’s Pegasus World Cup.

Last month, the Stronach Group announced that the Pegasus World Cup will run entirely medication free for the first time in its four runnings. This comes as part of a growing effort across the industry to improve standards and safety in horse racing after Santa Anita, also owned by Stronach, saw 37 horses die in less than 12 months. Entry fees were entirely waived, and the purse dropped from $9 million to $3 million. Additionally, 2 percent of the purses, which are put up by Stronach, will go to caring for retired Thoroughbred racehorses.

Full list of invitees for the Pegasus World Cup: 

  • Gift Box, trained by John Sadler and owned by Hronis Racing
  • Higher Power, trained by John Sadler and owned by Hronis Racing
  • Magic Wand (IRE), trained by Aidan O’Brien and owned by Michael Tabor, Derrick Smith, Mrs. John Magnier and Mr. M.J. Jooste
  • Math Wizard, trained by Saffie Joseph Jr. and owned by John Fanelli, Khalid Mishref, Cash is King, LC Racing, Collarmele Vitelli Stables, Ioannis Zoumas, and Bassett Stables
  • Maximum Security, trained by Jason Servis and owned by Gary and Mary West
  • McKinzie, trained by Bob Baffert and owned by Karl Watson, Michael E. Pegram, and Paul Weitman
  • Mr Freeze, trained by Dale Romans and owned by Jim Bakke and Gerald Isbister
  • Omaha Beach, trained by Richard Mandella and owned by Fox Hill Farms
  • Roadster, trained by Bob Baffert and owned by Speedway Stable
  • Seeking the Soul, trained by Dallas Stewart and owned by Charles E. Fipke
  • Spun to Run, trained by Juan Carlos Guerrero and owned by Robert P. Donaldson
  • Tax, trained by Danny Gargan and owned by R.A. Hill Stable, Reeves Thoroughbred Racing, Hugh Lynch, and Corms Racing Stable

Reserve invitees for the Pegasus World Cup: 

  • Mucho Gusto, trained by Bob Baffert and owned by Michael Lund Petersen
  • War Story, trained by Elizabeth Dobles and owned by Imaginary Stables and Glenn K. Ellis
  • Bravazo, trained by D. Wayne Lukas and owned by Calumet Farm
  • Diamond Oops, trained by Patrick Biancone and owned by Diamon 100 Racing Club, Amy E. Dunne, DP Racing, and Patrick L. Biancone Racing
  • True Timber, trained by Kiaran McLaughlin and owned by Calumet Farm

Full list of invitees for the Pegasus World Cup Turf: 

  • Arklow, trained by Brad Cox and owned by Donegal Racing, Joseph Bulger, and Peter Coneway
  • Channel Cat, trained by Todd Pletcher and owned by Calumet Farm
  • Magic Wand (IRE), trained by Aidan O’Brien and owned by Michael Tabor, Derrick Smith, Mrs. John Magnier and Mr. M.J. Jooste
  • Henley’s Joy, trained by Michael Maker and owned by Bloom Racing Stable
  • Instilled Regard, trained by Chad Brown and owned by OXO Equine
  • Mo Forza, trained by Peter Miller and owned by Bardy Farm and OG Boss
  • Next Shares, trained by Ricard Baltas and owned by Debby Baltas, Richard Baltas, Christopher T. Dunn, Jules Iavarone, Michael Iavarone, Jerry McClanahan, Ritchie Robershaw, and Mark Taylor
  • Sadler’s Joy, trained by Thomas Albertrani and owned by Woodslane Farm
  • Starship Jubilee, trained by Kevin Attard and owned by Blue Heaven Farm
  • United, trained by Richard Mandella and owned by LNJ Foxwoods
  • Without Parole (GB), trained by Chad Brown and owned by John and Tanya Gunther
  • Zulu Alpha, trained by Michael Maker and owned by Michael M. Hui

Reserve invitees for the Pegasus World Cup Turf: 

  • Sacred Life (FRA), trained by Chad Brown and owned by Michael Dubb, Madaket Stables, Wonder Stables, Bethlehem Stables
  • Admission Office, trained by Brian Lynch and owned by Amerman Racing
  • A Thread of Blue, trained by Kiaran McLaughlin and owned by Leonard C. Green
  • Mr. Misunderstood, trained by Brad Cox and owned by Flurry Racing Stables
  • Lucullan, trained by Kiaran McLaughlin and owned by Godolphin

Watch the Pegasus World Cup on NBC, NBCSports.com and the NBC Sports app on Saturday, January 25 from 4:30 p.m. ET to 6 p.m. ET.