Last Updated Aug 30, 2021, 10:00 AM

At the Gate - Thursday

fsThe field is starting to come together for the $9 million Pegasus World Cup (G1) at Gulfstream Park on Jan. 26 with Accelerate remaining the solid early betting favorite.

The Gulfstream Park card on Jan. 26 will feature nine stakes races and the first running of the $7 million Pegasus World Cup Turf Invitational (G1).

The Pegasus World Cup will feature a showdown of two Breeders’ Cup winners—Accelerate, who won the Classic and City of Light, who won the Dirt Mile.

Accelerate is the solid early betting favorite at for the race at +150 while City of Light is the second choice at +400.

City of Light was the only runner to beat Accelerate last year, a neck better in the Oaklawn Handicap (G2) last April. Accelerate reeled off four consecutive Grade 1 wins capped by his Classic win to end the year and make him a threat to Triple Crown winner Justify for Horse of the Year honors.

McKinzie is the third choice for the Pegasus World Cup at +700. The Bob Baffert trainee did not fire in the Classic, checking in 12th while beaten 31 lengths. He rebounded with a sharp win in the Malibu (G1) on Dec. 26.

It is going to be a great day of racing and betting and I’ll be providing my full card report for Gulfstream Park that Saturday as well Holy Bull Day, Fountain of Youth day and Florida Derby Day.

Pegasus World Cup Betting Odds via 
Accelerate +150
City of Light +400
McKinzie +700
Audible +900
Gunnevera +1000
Patternrecognition +1200
Bravazo +1400
Seeking the Soul +1600
True Timber +2500
Kukulkan +5000
Something Awesome +5000
Tom's d'Etat +5000
Unbridled Juan +5000

Now is the perfect time to purchase my Monthly Package for just $99.95. It gives you a month of Aqueduct daily and my Best Plays Report each Saturday and Sunday.

To purchase my Aqueduct Report for Thursday click here.

Here is the opener from Aqueduct to get the day off to a good start:

AQU Race 1 Alw $50,000s (12:50 ET)
#2 New Year's Wish 1-1
#3 Smiles From Sadie 2-1
#1 She'sakittykat / 1a Madame Barbarian 8-1
#5 Hexameter 4-1

Analysis: New Year's Wish took the field gate to wire and drew clear to win by 11 lengths against $40,000 non-winners of two at six furlongs. She did it over a wet track that seemed to play to outside stalkers and closers that day. She has enough pedigree to handle the extra ground, by New Year's Day out of a Yes It's True mare. The Rice barn is 29% winners (with a +ROI) moving runners from sprint to route.

Smiles From Sadie stalked the early pace and came with a good late rally to finish in the runner up spot last out going a mile at this level. She was five lengths clear of the third-place finisher Vip Nation, who came back to beat state bred Alw-1 optional claimers in her next outing on Dec. 31 here. Blinkers go on for the RRod barn and it looks as if she will get a good pace set up despite the short field.

WIN: #2 to win at 6-5 or better.
EX: 2 / 1,3
TRI: no play

Today’s Featured Race of the Day from Aqueduct:

AQU Race 7 OClm $25,000N1X (3:58 ET)
#5 Haul Anchor 4-1
#1 Peter's Project 3-1
#2 Calculated Risker 5-2
#7 Local Counsel 9-2

Analysis: Haul Anchor took the field gate to wire to beat $12,500 claimers last out in his first start off the claim by the RRod barn going a mile over a wet track here. He steps into a tougher spot here taking on state bred Alw-1 optional claimers but he won so easily last out it looks as if he can handle the step up in class here. This guy has the back class, a state bred stakes winner in '16 and '17. He makes his second start off a three month break here and owns a solid pace profile throughout.

Peter's Project is coming in off a sharp win in the mud at Finger Lakes last out against state bred optional claimers, his third win in a row. His lone go at nine furlongs cam in a restricted stake at Finger Lakes back in '15 where he checked in third. The gelding was claimed out of his last outing by the D'Alessandro barn that is showing a 0 for 5 mark first off the claim but if we go back five years the barn has hit at a 20% clip (with a +ROI).

WIN: #5 to win at 3-1 or better.
EX: 1,5 / 1,2,5,7
TRI: 1,5 / 1,2,5,7 / 1,2,5,6,7

Live Longshots:
These are price plays for exotic players looking to find a couple of extra contenders to use in their trifecta and superfecta wagers. Or for those with smaller bankrolls, you might want to get in a small win-place wager.

R1: #1 She’sakittykat / 1a Madame Barbarian 8-1
R2: #5 Golconda 8-1
R3: #1 Call the Cat 10-1
R3: #7 The Venerable Bede 12-1
R5: #6 Alley to Calvary 12-1
R8: #2 Stirred Not Shakin 8-1

Good luck today!

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