Pegasus World Cup: Spun to Run Out, Omaha Beach Now Even-Money Favorite

Pegasus World Cup New Odds and Post Positions

By Richard Rosenblatt

Multiple Grade 1 winner Omaha Beach is now the prohibitive even-money favorite in Saturday’s $3 million Pegasus World Cup  after top challenger Spun to Run was scratched Thursday morning due to a skin rash.

Omaha Beach Horse

Omaha Beach – Photo Courtesy of Santa Anita Park

Juan Carlos Guerrero, who trains Spun to Run, said the 4-year colt developed hives on his body a few weeks ago, and he remains “hot and sore” and not in condition to run.

“After he came to Palm Meadows (Training Center) we noticed he was a little hot so we clipped his hair,” said Guerrero. “Then two weeks later we noticed some spots, hives on his body. We wanted to run, but he’s a little hot and sore and we always want to do the right thing for the horse. It’s unfortunate, but we want the best for him.”

Spun to Run upset Omaha Beach in the Breeders’ Cup Dirt Mile (G1), and was the 7-2 second choice on Wednesday’s morning line, with Omaha Beach the solid 7-5 favorite.

With the field reduced to 11 horses, the new second choice at 9-2 is Much Gusto, a late entry from Hall of Fame trainer Bob Baffert. Omaha Beach already has victories over three other Baffert trainees (Game Winner in the Rebel; Improbable in the Arkansas Derby and Roadster in the Malibu).

Spun to Run – US Racing Photo

The scratch leaves Hall of Famer Javier Castellano without a mount for the World Cup. He had replaced Irad Ortiz, Jr., who just a few days ago surprisingly took off Spun to Run in favor of riding Much Gusto.

Omaha Beach, winner of the Malibu in his most recent start, will be ridden by Hall of Famer Mike Smith and leave from the No. 5 post in the fourth running of the World Cup.

Omaha Beach would have been the favorite for the 2019 Kentucky Derby (G1) after winning the Rebel (G2) and Arkansas Derby (G1), but the colt was scratched just before the race with a throat issue that required surgery.

After missing the Triple Crown races, Omaha Beach returned after overcoming several other ailments and won the Santa Anita Sprint Championship (G1) before running second in the BC Dirt Mile, and then winning the Malibu.

“He’s settled in nice (in South Florida), and he’s had plenty of time to get set,’’ said Hall of Fame trainer Richard Mandella at Wednesday’s draw.

This will be the final race of Omaha Beach’s career before he is retired to stud. He carries a 10-5-4-1 record and earnings of $1,651,800 into the 1 1/8-mile World Cup.

“We’re just glad we got to have him around for the time we did,’’ said Mandella. “It’s a great race, and it should be interesting with no medication (on race day). It’s great to be part of it.’’

Four of the 11 starters are now listed as 30-1 long shots – Seeking the Soul, War Story, Tenfold and Bodexpress. Mr Freeze drops to 20-1 from 30-1, while True Timber and Diamond Oops are each 15-1, with Tax 8-1 and Higher Power 6-1.

The first three winners of the Word Cup were Arrogate (2017), Gun Runner (2018) and City of Light (2019). Two were the favorites, Arrogate ($3.80) and Gun Runner ($4.20), while City of Light was the second choice ($5.80).

In the $1 million Pegasus World Cup Turf (G1), Magic Wand is the 7-2 morning-line favorite for trainer Aidan O’Brien. The 5-year-old mare drew the outside No. 12 post, and will be ridden by Ryan Moore. Without Parole, one of three entries from trainer Chad Brown, is the 4-1 second choice leaving from the No. 3 post with Frankie Dettori aboard.

In last year’s inaugural World Cup Turf, Bricks and Mortar was the winner en route to a perfect 6-0 season.

Pegasus World Cup Post Positions
PP Horse Jockey Trainer ML
1 True Timber Joe Bravo Kiaran McLaughlin 15-1
2 Tax Jose Ortiz Danny Gargan 8-1
3 Diamond Oops Julien Leparoux Patrick Biancone 15-1
4 Seeking the Soul John Velazquez Dallas Stewart 30-1
5 Omaha Beach Mike Smith Richard Mandella 1-1
6 Higher Power Flavien Prat John Sadler 6-1
7 War Story Joel Rosario Elizabeth Dobles 30-1
8 Mr Freeze Luis Saez Dale Romans 20-1
9 Spun to Run(SCR) Javier Castellano Juan Carlos Guerrero SCR
10 Mucho Gusto Irad Ortiz, Jr. Bob Baffert 9-2
11 Tenfold Tyler Gaffalione Steve Asmussen 30-1
12 Bodexpress Emisael Jaramillo Gustavo Delgado 30-1

Pegasus World Cup Post Turf Positions

In the $1 million Pegasus World Cup Turf (G1), Magic Wand is the 7-2 morning-line favorite for trainer Aidan O’Brien. The 5-year-old mare drew the outside No. 12 post, and will be ridden by Ryan Moore. Without Parole, one of three entries from trainer Chad Brown, is the 4-1 second choice leaving from the No. 3 post with Frankie Dettori aboard.

In last year’s inaugural World Cup Turf, Bricks and Mortar was the winner en route to a perfect 6-0 season.

Pegasus World Cup Turf Post Positions
PP Horse Jockey Trainer ML
1 Zulu Alpha Tyler Gaffalione Michael Maker 12-1
2 Arklow Luis Saez Brad Cox 6-1
3 Without Parole Frankie Dettori Chad Brown 4-1
4 Sadler’s Joy Javier Castellano Tom Albertrani 8-1
5 Channel Cat John Velazquez Todd Pletcher 10-1
6 Instilled Regard N/A Chad Brown 10-1
7 Admission Office Jose L. Ortiz Brian Lynch 30-1
8 Henley’s Joy Julien Leparoux Michael Maker 30-1
9 Next Shares Jose Valdivia, Jr. Richard Baltas 30-1
10 Mo Forza Joel Rosario Pete Miller 5-1
11 Sacred Life N/A Chad Brown 12-1
12 Magic Wand Ryan Moore Aidan O’Brien 7-2
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