Pegasus World Cup Contender: City of Light

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By Emily Shields

City of Light brings a sparkling résumé into the $9 million Pegasus World Cup on January 26. The son of Quality Road was a grade 1 winner at three and four, has won graded stakes races from seven furlongs to the Pegasus distance of 1 1/8 miles, and has earned $1.6 million for Mr. and Mrs. Warren K. William and trainer Michael McCarthy.

Pros: City of Light possesses plenty of natural speed, which can serve him well on Gulfstream’s oval. He is coming off a win in the Breeders’ Cup Dirt Mile (G1) by 2 ¾ lengths, beating some of the horses he will face in the Pegasus including Seeking the Soul and Bravazo. He has always been full of front running class, breaking his maiden by 7 ½ lengths on the lead, but came from off the pace to defeat Pegasus favorite Accelerate in the Oaklawn Park Handicap last April. In that race, City of Light sat fourth early and made a move to outlast his chief rival by a neck. They were 10 lengths clear of the rest of the field.

City of Light a $710,000 Keeneland yearling purchase, was one of the first shippers to take to the track at Gulfstream, arriving January 16. He worked four furlongs over that strip in :47.26 on Saturday the 19.

Cons: It’s hard to find holes in City of Light’s armor. He did lose the Forego Stakes (G1) at Saratoga last August, running second behind Whitmore before winning the Breeders’ Cup. That was off a similar layoff (May 26 to August 25) that this will be (November 3 to January 26), but he did win the Breeders’ Cup on a similar break. He and Accelerate each own a win over the other; Accelerate beat him soundly in the Gold Cup at Santa Anita (G1) last year over 1 ¼ miles when City of Light was the favorite. If they hook up in the stretch of the Pegasus, it could be a race to remember.

The 3rdrunning of the Pegasus World Cup will be held at Gulfstream Park on Saturday, with post positions drawn Tuesday.

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