The field for the Pegasus World Cup International Turf has been set and it will pay $ 3 000 000 to the winner and $ 900 000 to the runner up. With runners from Japan and Ireland at least the race has a semblance of ”International”.
- Magic Wand – Wayne Lordan. Magic Wand is trained by Aidan O’Brien and that alone makes us believe in this Galileo filly. She has been runner up in some Group 1 races and is a Group 2 winner. This trip is on the shorter side for her, but she will appreciate the ground and will race close to the pace or in the lead.
- Yoshida – Jose Ortiz. Fourth in the Breeders’ Cup Classic and sure classy enough for this race. Goes well fresh and wouldn’t mind a yielding surface. The distance should be spot on for him and he should go off favorite.
- Channel Maker – Javier Castellano. This gelding by English Channel has the benefit of Castellano up. Castellano is a master when it comes to turf racing and Channel Maker is bred for this surface. Last year he won the Joe Hirsch but was beaten far in the Breeders’ Cup Turf. This is easier but he would probably need a little further to be really competitive.
- Aerolithe – Florent Geroux. This filly comes from Japan where she has excelled over a mile. She has a lot of tactical speed, but will have to settle a little better if she gets to the lead (likely).
- Next Shares – Tyler Gaffalione. This six year old gelding comes from a Grade 2 win at Santa Anita earlier this month so the form is very good. He was outclassed in the Breeders’ Cup Mile after a win at Keenland which probably was a weak Grade 1. Shouldn’t be good enough today.
- Fahan Mura – Edwin Maldonado. Comes from a win in the Bobby Frankel at Santa Anita. Makes a long trip and will be fast out of the gates. It would be a surprise if she held on for a placing.
- Bricks And Mortar – Irad Ortiz. This Chad Brown horse has five wins from seven starts. The only losses came in Graded company at Saratoga and Belmont last summer. His most impressive win came in December after a rest. The win came in an AOC over a mile and the clock stopped at 1.34.33. He had an outside draw, dropped out and found a lot when asked to quicken. This is much tougher, but you can’t rule him out after that win.
- Delta Prince – Frankie Dettori. Not very good in his last start, but that was on the dirt and turf is preferred. Breezed 1.10/1200 turf at Palm Meadows on the 19th. Frankie could cause an upset if avoiding traffic in the stretch.
- Catapult – Joel Rosario. Catapult ran second in The Breeders’ Cup Mile after winning the Del Mar Mile Handicap. Catapult is clearly one of the best in this but we miss Drayden Van Dyke aboard. Rosario will need to wait, and hope that the pace is there. Catapult came in handily at 1.00.0 over 1000 meters on the dirt at Santa Anita. Challenger.
- Dubby Dubbie – Luca Panici. Dubby Dubbie left AOC company in the summer and has yet to win at a higher level. Clearly outclassed and the wide draw won’t help.
The race is very intriguing and it looks like some of the milers won’t mind a slow pace while the stayers would like a fast pace. Yoshida looks to be in the perfect spot here, but it won’t be easy to fight off Catapult. The classy Magic Wand is of course not to be ruled out.