Tuesday, January 26, 2021
First day sales total exceeds $3.5 million . . .

    Hip No. 368, Bear Brian, consigned by Summerfield (Francis & Barbara Vanlangendonck), Agent for Stonestreet Stables LLC, went to Kerri Raven for $150,000 to top the Horses of Racing Age section on the first day of the Ocala Breeders’ Sales Company’s Winter Mixed Sale. The 3-year-old bay colt by Tiznow, who captured a maiden special at Sam Houston Race Park on Jan. 9, is out of stakes-winner Lil Super Bear, by Super Saver.

   Hip No. 182, a son of Practical Joke also consigned by Summerfield, was purchased by Ronald Clark Shepherd for $130,000 to top the Consignor Preferred Session.  The bay yearling colt is out of Mobeautiful, by Uncle Mo, from the family of graded stakes-winner Speed Dialer.

    Hip No. 321, Polterer, a 3-year-old son of Ghostzapper, went to Danny W. Brown for $110,000. Consigned by Kaizen Sales (Richard Kent), Agent, the chestnut colt is out of graded stakes-winner Honey Hughes, by Henny Hughes.

    J. Stable LLC paid $100,000 for Hip No. 360, Pledge, a 3-year-old filly by Candy Ride consigned by Six K’s Training & Sales, Agent. A 6-1/2 length winner of a maiden special at Turfway Park on Jan. 2, she’s a half-sister to graded stakes-placed stakes-winner Hello Don Julio out of Faithful, by Vindication.

    Hip No. 25, a daughter of Mendelssohn consigned by Stuart Morris, Agent, was sold to Democracy Bloodstock for $95,000. The dark bay or brown yearling filly is out of stakes-placed Simply Confection, by Candy Ride (ARG), from the family of champion Ashado.

    Hip No. 117, a daughter of Malibu Moon consigned by Kerri Szegi, Agent, went to Windylea Farm – NY LLC for $95,000. The bay yearling filly is out of graded stakes-placed Fortunia, by Leroidesanimaux (BRZ), a half-sister to Gr. I stakes- winner Dionisia.

    Hip No. 315, a son of Distorted Humor consigned by Oscar Brown Stables, was sold to Kerri Raven for $90,000. The 3-year-old bay colt, whose three eighths in :32 2/5 was co-fastest at the distance at the Under Tack Show, is out of graded stakes- placed Goldstryke Glory, by Second in Command.

    Hip No. 289, Street Ruckus, also consigned by Kaizen, was sold to Holly & David Wilson & Peernboom – Bowyer, LLC for $85,000. The dark bay or brown 3-year-old colt by Street Boss, a half-brother to Gr. I stakes-placed Sir Sahib, is out of Xs Belle, by Dynaformer.

    Hip No. 307, Waltzing Champ, by Ghoszapper, went to Al & Bill Ulwelling for $85,000. The 4-year-old chestnut gelding, consigned by Kaizen Sales (Richard Kent), Agent, is out of First Waltz, by Medaglia d’Oro, a daughter of graded stakes-winner Spring Waltz.

    Hip No. 338, Brother Brody, consigned by L. G. Agent, was sold to Emerald Sales, Agent for Michael Eiserman, for $80,000. The 3-year-old dark bay or brown colt by Brody’s Cause, who breezed three eighths in :32 3/5 at the Under Tack Show, is out of Mesa Mist, by Sky Mesa, from the family of graded stakes-placed Logan’s Mist.

    DKW Racing paid $67,000 for Hip No. 90, a daughter of Hard Spun consigned by C & S Thoroughbred Sales, Agent. The dark bay or brown yearling filly is out of Cleo, by Pioneerof the Nile, a half-sister to graded stakes- winner Prospective Saint.

    Hip No. 63, a daughter of Twirling Candy consigned by Pelican StatThoroughbreds, Agent, was sold for $65,000 to Al & Bill Ulwelling. The bay yearling filly is out of American Kitty, by Tale of the Cat, a half-sister to stakes- placed American Diva.

    For the Consignor Preferred session, 98 horses sold for $1,893,300, compared with 85 horses grossing $1,912,300 in 2020. The average price was $19,319 compared with $22,498 a year ago, while the median price was $10,050 compared with $13,000 last year. The buyback percentage was 30.9%; it was 37.9% last year.

    For the Horses of Racing Age session, 73 horses grossed $1,676,500 compared with 70 selling for $1,366,900 in 2020. The average was $22,966, up from $19,527 a year ago, while the median price was $13,000 compared to $11,000 last year. The buyback percentage was 12%; it was 11.4% in 2020.

Sunday, January 24, 2021
Pool more than $2.3 million . . .

  HALLANDALE BEACH, FL – Gulfstream Park’s mandatory payout of the 20-cent Rainbow 6 had multiple winning tickets each worth $12,558.

    The Rainbow 6 had a carryover of $266,566 going in and there was $2,077,971 of new money wagered in the pool.

    There will be a $100,000 guaranteed pool in the Rainbow 6 when racing resumes Wednesday as well as a Super Hi-5 carryover of $6,357.54.


    A trio of maiden races for 3-year-old fillies were highlights on Gulfstream’s  card.

    Gary and Mary West’s Slumber Party, a daughter of Malibu Moon, made an impressive debut, going seven furlongs and winning by 7 ½ lengths in 1:23.05. The filly is trained by Kelly Breen.

    Another  filly breaking her maiden was Joy of Painting, a daughter of Munnings trained by Rusty Arnold, racing on turf for the first time in four starts and covering a mile on a firm course in 1:36.10.

    Tabor Hall, a daughter of Candy Ride trained by Ken McPeek, broke her maiden in her sixth attempt and her first trip over turf. Tabor Hall covered 1 1/16 miles in 1:44.75 while winning by 1 ½ lengths.

 WHO’S HOT:  Tyler Gaffalione, who had four winners on Pegasus Day, stayed hot with three more today. Gaffalione won aboard Think It Thru ($4.40) in the second, King Ottokar ($6.80) in the sixth and Royal Meghan ($3.20) in the nint

Saturday, January 23, 2021
Son of Paynter has won 4 straight . . .

    HALLANDALE BEACH - The 2021 racing season started today the same way last year's ended for Knicks Go at Gulfstream Park, as the winner of the Breeders’ Cup Dirt Mile unleashed another display of sheer brilliance and class to capture the $3 million, Gr. I Pegasus World Cup Invitational.

    The Pegasus, a 1 1/8-mile event for 4-year-olds and up, and the $1 million Pegasus World Cup Turf Invitational co-headlined a 12 -race program that included five other graded stakes.

     Brad Cox-trained Knicks Go, who set a Keeneland track record with a front-running performance in the Nov. 7 Breeders’ Cup Dirt Mile, showed his heels to 11 rivals while capturing the 5th running of the Pegasus by 2 ¾ lengths.

     “He is one of the top handicap horses in the country now," Cox said. "This is what you get up for every day, seven days a week, long days for moments like this. I’m very proud of the horse and my team and thank the Korea Racing Authority for the opportunity with this horse.”

    Knicks Go broke alertly and rounded the first turn on top, then continued to show the way along the backstretch while pressed briefly by Last Judgment and stalked by Tax. After setting fractions of :22.90 and :46.16 seconds for the first half mile, Knicks Go maintained complete control under a motionless Joel Rosario on the far turn and into the stretch. Under mild encouragement from Rosario, the 5-year-old son of Paynter unleashed a powerful kick at the top of the stretch and drew clear under wraps.

    “He’s a very special horse - he just goes faster and faster,” Rosario said. “He was really enjoying what he was doing out there, so I was never worried about somebody getting close to me.”

    Knicks Go earned $1,740,000 for the victory as he raised his record to 6-3-1 in 18 starts and his career bank account to $3,088,995. He was purchased by owner Korea Racing Authority for $87,000 at the Keeneland yearling sale in 2016. His final time of 1:47.89 is just one second off the track record of 1:46.83 set by Arrogate in this race in 2017.   

    Jesus’ Team, who finished second behind Knicks Go in the Breeders’ Cup Dirt Mile, settled behind the pace in fifth along the backstretch before making a wide move into the stretch and closing steadily to finish second under Irad Ortiz Jr.  Independence Hall saved ground in fourth before making a bid in the stretch, falling just a neck short of holding off Jesus’s Team.

     Knicks Go was timed in 1:47.89 while carrying his brilliant speed over 1 1/8 miles. He wasa Gr. 1 winner at 2, but was winless in eight starts in 2019 beforebeing transferred to Cox for the 2020 season. The Maryland-bred speedster won all three starts last year by a combined 21 ½ lengths, all in front-running fashion.

    “It’s a very prestigious race," Cox said. "I know it hasn’t been around that long, but when you look at past winners, it’s a very prestigious list of horses that have won it – world champions, actually, with Gun Runner and Arrogate. They weren’t just national horses. They competed and won on the world stage, so it’s a big race.”

Wednesday, January 20, 2021
12 races, guaranteed pools, set for Pegasus day . . .

    HALLANDALE BEACH - In addition to being co-headlined by the $3 million Pegasus World Cup Invitational (G1) and the $1 million Pegasus World Cup Turf Invitational (G1), Saturday’s 12-race program will feature a variety of all-graded-stakes multi-race wagers.

    The Late Pick 4 (Races 9-12) and Late Pick 5 (Races 8-12), which will both have guaranteed pools of $750,000, as well as the 20-cent Rainbow 6 (Races 7-12), will offer all-graded-stakes sequences, as will all rolling Pick 3s in Races 7-12

    The Pegasus Turf (Race 11) and the Pegasus (Race 12) will anchor the sequences for the Late Pick 4 and Pick 5, as well as the Rainbow 6, which will be kicked off with the $125,000 Marshua’s River (G3), a mile turf race for older fillies and mares carded as Race 7. The $125,000 La Prevoyante (G3), a 1 ½-mile turf race for older fillies and mares carded as Race 8, will be the second leg of the Rainbow 6 and kick off the Late Pick 5.

    The $200,000 Inside Information (G2), a seven-furlong race for older fillies and mares carded as Race 9, will start the Late Pick 4 while serving as the third leg of the Rainbow 6 and second leg of the Late Pick 5. The $150,000 W. L. McKnight (G3), a 1 ½-mile turf stakes for older horses carded as Race 10, will be the fourth leg of the Rainbow 6, third leg of the Late Pick 5 and the second leg of the Late Pick 4. The Pegasus Turf and Pegasus will wrap up all three wagers.

    The $125,000 Fred W. Hooper (G3), a mile race for older horses, has been carded as Race 4. Advance wagering on Saturday’s Pegasus Day program will be available Friday.

Rainbow 6 Hit for $636,311, Mandatory Payout Sunday  

    The 20-cent Rainbow 6 was hit today for $636,311 on the day when post positions were drawn for Saturday’s Pegasus World Cup Invitational and Pegasus World Cup Turf Invitational. Thursday’s Rainbow 6 sequence, with a guaranteed pool of $100,000, will span Races 5-10.

WHO’S HOT:  Junior Alvarado notched a three-win day today, scoring aboard Mary of Scotland ($17.60) in Race 2, Sososubtle ($38.80) in Race 4, and Celestial Cheetah ($12.20) in Race 6.

Wednesday, January 20, 2021
Richest U. S. Purse Outside of Breeders' Cup . . .
    HALLANDALE BEACH - Korea Racing Authority’s Knicks Go is scheduled to seek the biggest payday of his career in Saturday’s $3 million Pegasus World Cup Championship Invitational at Gulfstream Park while also pursuing lucrative future considerations.

    “It’s a very prestigious race. It hasn’t been around that long, but with the likes of Gun Runner, Arrogate and City of Light, there are champions that have won this race. It means a whole lot. It’s a race that can make a stallion, and we’re still trying to do that with Knicks Go,” trainer Brad Cox said. “He’ll be a stallion at some point. This would mean a lot and do a lot for his value as a stallion. Not only is it a great purse, but it’s going to add a lot of value if he’s able to win the race.”

    The Pegasus, which will be contested at 1 1/8 miles for the richest purse for older horses in North America not associated with the Breeders’ Cup, and the $1 million Pegasus World Cup Turf Invitational (G1), a 1 3/16-mile turf feature for older horses, will co-headline a 12-race program that will also offer the $200,000 Inside Information (G2), $125.000 Fred W. Hooper (G3), $125,000 William. L. McKnight (G3), $125,000 La Prevoyante (G3) and the $125,000 Marsha’s River (G3). First-race post time is set for 11:40 a.m. Advance wagering on the Pegasus program will be available on Friday. The late Pick 4 and Late Pick 5 pools will both be guaranteed at $750,000.

    Knicks Go will enter the fifth running of the Pegasus off three straight victories in as many starts in 2020, including a track record-breaking triumph under Joel Rosario in the Breeders’ Cup Dirt (G2) at Keeneland. Installed as the 5-2 morning-line favorite in a field of 12 after drawing Post. No. 4 Wednesday, Knicks Go will have to prove himself by trying to carry his abundant speed beyond 1 1/16-miles, the longest distance he has run during his 17-race career. 

     “I haven’t raced a lot at Gulfstream, but I think speed is always a good thing there. I’m a big believer that speed is good at a mile and an eighth and beyond - obviously it depends on how much other speed is in the race. But I think he can get it. I think he’s a horse that once he gets free and loose, he runs with a lot of confidence,” Cox said. “I’m excited. I really do think he’ll handle a mile and an eighth. In his three races with us last year, there was horse left. In the Breeders’ Cup, Joel reached up and grabbed him four or five jumps from the wire, so he was still going.”

    Knicks Go is in the middle of a career resurgence since joining Cox’s stable in 2020. The Maryland-bred son of Paynter was a top 2-year-old in 2018, capturing the 1 1/16-mile Breeders’ Futurity (G1) at Keeneland by 5 ½ lengths and finishing second behind Game Winner in the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile (G1) at Churchill Downs. However, he went winless in 10 starts after his Breeders’ Futurity score.

     Knicks Go registered a front-running 7 ½-length victory for Cox in a Feb. 22 optional claiming allowance at Oaklawn Park before heading to the sidelines for seven months. He returned to action with a sensational 10 ¼-length romp in a Oct. 4 optional claiming allowance at Keeneland, encouraging his connections to give the Breeders’ Cup Dirt Mile a try. Knicks Go came through with a spectacular 3 ½-length, front-running victory in the track-record time of 1:33.85. Rosario has been awarded the return call. 

     W. S. Farish’s Code of Honor, a graded-stakes winner over the Gulfstream Park track, was rated second in the morning-line at 9-2 after drawing Post. No. 10. The Shug McGaughey-trained 5-year-old captured the 2019 Fountain of Youth (G2) before finishing third behind Maximum Security in the both the Florida Derby (G1) and the Kentucky Derby (G1). He went on to win the Travers (G1) at Saratoga and the Jockey Club Gold Cup (G1) via the disqualification of Vino Rossi at Belmont Park.

     After winning the June 6 Westchester at Belmont to open his 2021 campaign, Code of Honor has been winless in four starts that include a third-place finish in the Met Mile (G1) at Belmont, a troubled fourth in the Whitney (G1) at Keeneland, a runner-up finish in the Kelso at Belmont, and a second-place finish in the Clark (G1) at Churchill Downs.

     “In the Clark, he was bottled up there. By the time he got loose, the race was pretty much over. Before that, going a mile, Chad’s horse [Complexity] kind of controlled what was going on. I think Javier [Castellano] knew he had to be closer and move a little sooner,” trainer Shug McGaughey said. “The Whitney was a throw out. His first race was good. I probably shouldn’t have run him in the Metropolitan Mile. He was wide and Vekoma got the trip. He’s a nice horse. Maybe this will be his day”

    Tyler Gaffalione is scheduled to ride Code of Honor for the first time. “Obviously, he rides this racetrack very well and he’s very familiar with it,” McGaughey said. “He’s a very patient rider and that’s what Code of Honor wants, so I’m pleased to have him.”

    Randy Hill, Reeves Thoroughbred Racing and Hugh Lynch’s Tax is set to make his second straight start in the Pegasus, in which he finished off the board after stumbling at the start last year. The 5-year-old son of Arch, one of two returning Pegasus entrants, is coming off a dominating 4 ½-length victory in the Dec. 12 Harlan’s Holiday (G3) at Gulfstream.

    “He’s better now than he’s ever been. We always knew he was a really good horse. He’s grown and developed into a better horse than he was last year. I think with age he’s getting better and getting stronger, healthier,” Gargan said. “He has a few little issues we had to work through, and he’s gotten through them. I’m expecting a big performance.”

    Luis Saez has the return mount aboard Tax, who drew Post No. 7 and was rated third at 5-1.

    Jim Bakke and Jerry Isbister’s Mr Freeze will seek to improve on a second-place finish behind Mucho Gusto in last year’s Pegasus. The Dale Romans-trained 6-year-old came right back from his big run in the Pegasus with a three-length victory in the Gulfstream Park Mile (G2). The son of To Honor and Serve has won one of six subsequent graded-stakes starts, capturing the 1 1/8-mile Fayette (G2) Oct. 10 sat Keeneland before finishing sixth in the Breeders’ Cup Dirt Mile and fifth in the Clark.

    Mr Freeze was rated at 15-1 after drawing post No. 11.

    “Mr Freeze has plenty of gas, so he can get out and settle where he needs to be. It’s a pretty fair race going a mile and an eighth here no matter where you draw,” said Romans, who named John Velazquez to ride. “He loves this racetrack.”

    Romans is also scheduled to saddle Albaugh Family Stables LLC and Helen K. Groves Revocable Trust’s Coastal Defense for the Pegasus. The 5-year-old son of Curlin finished fourth in both the Fayette and Clark in his last two starts and is also rated at 15-1. Corey Lanerie has the mount.

    "He is a grinder, so hopefully he can drop over before the first turn," Romans added.

    Thumbs Up Racing LLC’s Sleepy Eyes Todd, who is rated at 8-1 in the morning line, enters the Pegasus off a half-length victory in the seven-furlong Mr. Prospector Dec. 19 at Gulfstream, but the 5-year-old son of Paddy O’Prado was a front-running winner in the 1 1/8-mile Charles Town Classic (G2) in August.

    “I love the mile and an eighth,” trainer Miguel Silva said. “He already won at that distance and he performed really good at that distance. We’re just hoping that we have a different kind of trip. We don’t want to be on the lead and hopefully we can pick up horses at the end.”

    Jose Ortiz is scheduled to ride Sleepy Eyes Todd for the first time.

    Grupo 7C Racing Stable’s Jesus’ Team is rated at 10-1 in the morning-line for the Pegasus on the strength of a pair of Grade 1 placings last year. After winning a $32,000 maiden claiming race at Gulfstream last March, the son of Tapiture went on the road to finish third in the Preakness (G1) and second behind Knicks Go in the Breeders’ Cup Dirt Mile. The 4-year-old over-achiever returned to Gulfstream to prepare for a start in the Pegasus with a victory in the Claiming Crown Jewel Dec. 5.

    Jesus’ Team is trained by Jose D’Angelo, a former leading trainer in Venezuela before venturing to South Florida in 2019,

    “It’s very exciting. It is the most important race of our calendar in South Florida at Gulfstream Park,” D’Angelo said. “I think it’s a big test for both me and Jesus.” Irad Ortiz Jr., who rode Mucho Gusto to victory last year, is scheduled to ride Jesus’ Team for the first time Saturday.

    Trainer Michael McCarthy, who saddled City of Light for a 5 ¾-length romp in the 2019 Pegasus, is scheduled to saddle Eclipse Thoroughbred Partners and Twin Creek Racing Stables LLC, Robert and Kathleen Verratti’s Independence Hall. The 4-year-old son of Constitution, who finished fifth in last year’s Florida Derby (G1) at Gulfstream, came off a seven-month layoff to win a Nov. 8 allowance at Del Mar before finishing fifth in the seven-furlong Malibu (G1) at Santa Anita last time out.

    “There are a lot of unknowns with the horse. Can he handle a mile and an eighth? His one race at Gulfstream was just OK,” McCarthy said. “So, there are a lot of unknowns going into this.” Flavien Prat has the call.

    John Sondereker’s Kiss Today Goodbye enters the Pegasus after winning his first stakes in the Dec. 26 San Antonio (G2) at Santa Anita. The Eric Kruljac-trained 4-year-old son of Cairo Prince is rated at 12-1. Mike Smith, who rode Arrogate to victory in the 2018 Pegasus, has the call.

    Harpers First Ride, who has been privately purchased since his last start by GMP Stables LLC, Cypress Creek Equine and Arnold Bennewith, will seek his fifth stakes victory in six starts Saturday. The Claudio Gonzalez-trained 5-year-old son of Paynter will be ridden by regular jockey Angel Cruz.

    John Fanelli and partners’ Math Wizard will seek his first victory since capturing the 2019 Pennsylvania Derby (G1) in the Pegasus. The Saffie Joseph Jr.-trained 5-year-old son of Algorithms will be ridden by Edgard Zayas.

    Michael Dubb, Steve Hornstock, Bethlehem Stables LLC and Nice Guys Racing’s Last Judgment, who captured the Jan. 16 Sunshine Classic by 6 ½ lengths at Gulfstream Park, drew into the field upon the withdrawal of True Timber. The Michael Maker trainee will be ridden by Paco Lopez.