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Posted 2024-01-21 22:35:26  
Pegasus World Cup Draw Done

National Treasure secured post 7 and emerges as the 9-5 morning-line favorite for the $3 million Pegasus World Cup Invitational at Gulfstream Park. The draw, crucial due to the short run to the first turn in the 1 1/8-mile race, pleased trainer Bob Baffert, who aims for his third Pegasus victory. Baffert expressed contentment with the middle post, emphasizing the challenges of the 12 post. Baffert's prior successes at Gulfstream contribute to his optimism, having won in 2017 with Arrogate and in 2020 with Mucho Gusto.

Saffie Joseph Jr. experiences mixed emotions at the draw; O'Connor secures post 2, while Skippylongstocking draws the challenging 12 post. Despite disappointment, Joseph remains philosophical, acknowledging the unpredictable nature of post assignments. Considering the unfavorable draw, Joseph contemplates the possibility of scratching Skippylongstocking from the Pegasus to participate in the Saudi World Cup on February 25.

First Mission, narrowly defeated in the Grade 2 Clark, assumes the second choice at 7-2. Luis Saez will guide him from post 8, positioned next to National Treasure. The field comprises Nimitz Class, Dynamic One, Hoist the Gold, Trademark, Senor Buscador, Grand Aspen, Il Miracolo, and Crupi, with Castle Chaos on the also-eligible list.

The 1 1/8-mile Pegasus Turf field features Warm Heart as the 9-5 morning-line favorite, breaking from post 9. Warm Heart, the sole filly, concluded 2023 finishing third in the Group 1 Hong Kong Vase. Integration, undefeated and a graded stakes winner, drew post 4, pleasing trainer Shug McGaughey. The Pegasus Turf lineup includes Atone, Jerry the Nipper, I'm Very Busy, Webslinger, Kingmax, Adhamo, Master Piece, Shirl’s Speight, Main Event, and Catnip.

The Filly and Mare Turf draw faced complications, leading to a re-draw. Star Fortress, a dominant winner of the Grade 3 Cardinal, headlines the field at 5-2 morning-line odds. Notable contenders include Fluffy Socks, Queen Goddess, and Ruby Nell, adding intrigue to the competitive lineup. 

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