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Pegasus World Cup: Final flight on track for Gun Runner

Pegasus World Cup at Gulfstream Park

2018 Pegasus World Cup and 2017 Horse of the Year favorite Gun Runner breezes through eighth-mile splits of 12.60, 24.40, 36.20, 48.20, 59.40, and finishes six furlongs in 1:11 flat over the Fair Grounds main track in what was the final work of his career at the historic New Orleans racetrack.

Working in tandem with stablemate Gettysburg, the 2017 Breeders’ Cup Classic winner showed his affinity for the Fair Grounds strip by galloping out seven furlongs in 1:23.80 and one mile in 1:37.00.

The son of the retired Argentinian bred Candy Ride who was undefeated in six career starts and campaigned by Hall of Fame trainer Ron McAnally for Sidney and Jenny Craig,  Gun Runner began his career as a two year old winner of a one mile maiden special weight at Churchill, before stamping his name on the 2016 Derby Trail with back to back wins in the G2 Risen Star and Louisiana Derby. He finished third in the Kentucky Derby that year raising questions about his ability to get the win at the classic distance of a mile and a quarter. But late in 2016 he returned to Churchill to win the Clark Handicap at 1 1/8 miles, closing out his three year old season on his way to winning five of his next six as a 4-year-old.

Pegasus World Cup: Final flight on track

Gun Runner is expected to ship to Florida on Thursday, January 18, where he’ll put in a final breeze for the “World’s Richest Race” with a chance to add a sixth Grade 1 win to his credentials, and the bulk of the $16 million purse.

He’ll face at least three of the runners he defeated last time out in the Classic including runner-up Collected, third place finisher West Coast, and War Story who closed out the Superfecta that day.

Win or lose, the 2018 Pegasus World Cup will be the culmination of a spectacular career for Gun Runner and his connections as he’ll make one last start before standing stud for a fee of $70,000 at Three Chimney’s Farm in Kentucky and a promising career as a stallion.

Portions of this story were inspired by Fair Grounds Barn Notes.

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