Heavy favorite Knicks Go sprung out of the gate and busted out a wire-to-wire win in the $3 million Pegasus World Cup at Gulfstream Park, earning himself an invite to the $20 million Saudi Cup in February. Eclipse Award for Outstanding Jockey finalist Joel Rosario was in the irons.
Knicks Go has been on fire since moving over to Brad Cox, a finalist for the Eclipse Award for Outstanding Trainer. The Pegasus World Cup was his fourth-straight win after claiming the Breeders’ Cup Dirt Mile in his last time out.
Owned by Korea Racing Authority, he is named not for the New York Knicks, but for the KRA’s genetics program.
Knicks Go paid $4.60 to win, $3.60 to place and $3.00 to show. Jesus’ Team crossed the wire second, paying $8.60 to place and $4.80 to show. Third-place finisher Independence Hall’s 25-1 odds paid $10.00 to show.
One race earlier, morning line favorite Colonel Liam surged down the homestretch to win the $1 million Pegasus World Cup Turf (G1) in his first-ever graded stakes. He paid $7.00 to win, $4.20 to place and $3.20 to show.
The 4-year-old colt, owned by Robert E. and Lawana L. Low, earned an automatic entry into the $1 million Middle Distance Turf Handicap, an undercard race to the $20 million Saudi Cup.
Pletcher also fielded second-place finisher Largent, who paid $5.00 to place and $3.80 to show. Mike Maker’s Cross Border paid $6.40 to show after finishing third.
This is the second year in a row that the two Pegasus races have gone entirely medication-free, including Lasix, a commonly used anti-bleeding medication. The series is for horses aged 4 and older and is invitation-only.