Joseph-Trained Pegasus World Cup Candidates Breeze 

December 9, 2023

Skippylongstocking galloping to the win in the Grade 3 West Virginia Derby August 6. (Coady Photography)

Skippylongstocking, O’Connor Work at Palm Meadows

Rainbow 6 Gross Jackpot Pool Guaranteed at $150,000

David Joseph/Gulfstream Park

HALLANDALE BEACH, Fla. – Trainer Saffie Joseph Jr. supervised workouts for his two candidates for the $3 million Pegasus World Cup Invitational (G1) Saturday morning at Palm Meadows, Gulfstream Park’s satellite training facility in Palm Beach County.

Daniel Alonso’s Skippylongstocking, who is coming off a third-place finish in the Nov. 4 Breeders’ Cup Dirt Mile (G1) at Santa Anita, breezed an easy three furlongs in 39.65 seconds. Michael Iavarone and partners’ O’Connor, who captured the Fayette (G2) at Keeneland in his most recent start, was timed in 47.90 for a half-mile for a likely start in the Dec. 30 Harlan’s Holiday (G3) at Gulfstream.

“That was Skippy’s first work back, so he’ll be on a weekly workout schedule from now on,” Joseph said. “It was O’Connor’s second work. He’ll probably run in the Harlan’s Holiday. He didn’t get a break like Skippy did.”

Skippylongstocking, who won last year’s Harlan’s Holiday and captured this year’s $1 million Charles Town Classic (G2), is scheduled to train up to the Jan. 27 Pegasus World Cup, in which he finished seventh this year. O’Connor, who finished a fast-closing second behind Skippylongstocking in the Charles Town Classic, finished 11th in the 2023 Pegasus.

The 20-cent Rainbow 6 gross jackpot pool will be guaranteed at $150,000 Sunday at Gulfstream Park.

The popular multi-race wager went unsolved for the fourth racing day following a mandatory payout that yielded multiple $50,999 payoffs.

The Rainbow 6 sequence will span Races 6-11, kicked off by a mile maiden special weight event for 2-year-olds on turf that drew a field of 12.

Hall of Fame trainer Bill Mott is represented by two entrants in the mile turf race, including 3-1 morning-line favorite Ocala Rocket, who was competitive in two New York starts. Mott’s son, Riley, is scheduled to saddle first-time starter Swiss Slang, who has been working forwardly for his debut. Hall of Fame trainer Todd Pletcher will send out first-timer I See You Lookin, a $400,000 son of City of Light.

The Rainbow 6 sequence will also include a mile maiden special weight race for 2-year-olds on turf in Race 8. Christophe Clement-trained Twisted Romance, who close to finish a close third in his debut at Aqueduct, is rated as the 4-1 morning-line favorite in a deep field of 12.

The Rainbow 6 sequence will be capped by a mile turf race for $25,000 maiden claimers on turf in Race 11. Riley Mott-trained Hot N Lucky, who came up a little short in the stretch in his first Gulfstream start against better, is the 5-2 morning-line favorite in a field of 12 2-year-olds.

Races 6, 8 and 11 are also encompassed in the sequence in the $3 Tropical Turf Pick 3.

Defending Championship Meet titlist Irad Ortiz Jr. rode three winners Saturday while winning both stakes. He rode back-to-back winners, scoring with Ozara ($3.80) in the $100,000 Wait A While in Race 6 and Inveigled ($5.00) in Race 7 and came back to score aboard Noted in the $100,000 Pulpit in Race 11.

@jonathanstettin @bbopjz Fantastic writing, thoroughly enjoyable read.

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