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Mucho Gusto gives Baffert second Pegasus World Cup (G1)
Sunday, January 26, 2020

Mucho Gusto's powerful victory in Saturday's $3 million Pegasus World Cup S. (G1) gave Bob Baffert his second victory in the first four runnings of the race at Gulfstream Park.

Baffert won the inaugural event in 2017 with Juddmonte Farm's champion Arrogate.

Mucho Gusto, owned by HRH Prince Faisal Bin Khaled, was much the best in the 1 1/8-mile Pegasus. He shot right to the lead out of the gate, then eased back to fourth before making a big move on the final turn and pulling away in the stretch to win by 4 1/2-lengths under Irad Ortiz, Jr.

“He looked great in the warm up, and Irad Ortiz did a pretty masterful job. He had me a little bit worried the way he was down inside like that, but he knew what he was doing,” said Baffert.

Purchased for $625,000 at the 2018 Fasig-Tipton Midlantic Sale, Mucho Gusto had four Grade 3 victories prior to Saturday. His record is now 6-2-2 in 11 starts, with earnings of $2,579,800.

Baffert also explained the late decision to run in the Pegasus and where the son of Mucho Macho Man could run next.

“The horse shipped really well and I wasn't really planning on taking him there, but he worked really well the other day,” said Baffert. “I was going to run in the [GII] San Pasqual next week, but after he worked so well, I thought you know what, I'm just going to take a shot at the mile and an eighth and maybe that will get him ready. He didn't get an invite to the Saudi Cup, so I thought maybe if he runs well enough, he'll get an invitation.” 

The Saudi Cup, the world's richest horse race at $20 million, will be run for the first time in Saudi Arabia on Feb. 29.

Baffert 2013