Pegasus World Cup Invitational 2024: Who’s Racing for the Coveted Title?

Published 9:03 pm Tuesday, January 16, 2024

Free Horse Horse Race photo and picture

Image Source

Sponsored content

Subscribe to our free email newsletter

Get the latest news sent to your inbox

The horse racing world is abuzz with anticipation as we draw closer to the 2024 Pegasus World Cup Invitational, set to take place on January 27th at Gulfstream Park. With a staggering purse of $3 million and a reputation as one of the most prestigious events on the racing calendar, the Pegasus World Cup showcases world-class thoroughbred talent. Let’s look closely at some contenders vying for the coveted title this year.

First Mission

First Mission, a horse owned by Godolphin, has been making waves in the lead-up to the Pegasus World Cup. Trained by Brad Cox, First Mission’s journey in the racing world has been promising. 

He debuted on February 18th at Fair Grounds, finishing second, and quickly followed it up with a victory a month later. A standout performance in Keeneland’s Stonestreet Lexington (G3) secured his spot in the 2023 Preakness Stakes (G1) at Pimlico, only to face a minor setback with a scratched entry due to an ankle issue.

After returning with a victory in a Keeneland allowance race on October 14th, First Mission found himself in a thrilling battle in the Clark against another Pegasus invitee, Trademark, ultimately losing by just a nose. 

Brad Cox expressed confidence in First Mission’s readiness, stating that the horse is doing exceptionally well in training. With only five previous starts to his name, there’s a sense that First Mission is still developing and learning. The Pegasus World Cup could be the perfect stage for him to shine as he embarks on his 4-year-old campaign.

National Treasure

One of the most compelling Pegasus contenders is National Treasure, a horse who etched his name into the annals of racing history with a resounding victory in the 2023 Preakness. He also raced in the Breeders’ Cup Dirt Mile at Santa Anita on November 4th, with Bob Baffert as his trainer. Even though he didn’t win, he came in second, which is a fantastic accomplishment considering the tough competition.

National Treasure, born of the illustrious sire Quality Road, demonstrated his mettle during a recent workout that awakened onlookers. Throughout six furlongs, he covered the distance in a blistering 1 minute and 11.2 seconds. 


Last year, Skippylongstocking didn’t have the best day in the Pegasus – he finished seventh. But you know what they say: when you fall off a horse, you get back on. That’s what Skippylongstocking is doing. He’s determined to show everyone what he’s made of this time.

Skippylongstocking’s trainer and connections have been working hard to ensure Skippylongstocking is in great shape for the 2024 Pegasus World Cup. 

He didn’t do so well last year, but now he’s back and ready to give it his all. As race day approaches, we’ll see if Skippylongstocking can turn things around and make a stronger impression this time.


O’Connor’s first try at the Pegasus didn’t go as well as he hoped – he ended up in eleventh place. But that didn’t stop him; he’s back for another shot.

What’s exciting is that O’Connor has been showing us what he’s made of lately. He had a big win in the GIII Harlan’s Holiday. It was no easy feat. He had to battle hard and give his absolute best to come out on top. That kind of determination is precisely what makes horse racing so thrilling.

O’Connor’s coach, Saffie Joseph, Jr., has been working closely with him, and it seems like they’ve found their groove. O’Connor is hitting his stride, which means he’s getting better and better with each race.

Saudi Crown

Trainer Brad Cox has not one but two formidable contenders in the Pegasus World Cup Invitational. Saudi Crown, owned by FMQ Stables, boasts Grade 1 credentials after winning the Pennsylvania Derby at Parx. Although he finished off the board in the Breeders’ Cup Classic, his only subpar performance, Saudi Crown’s track record is impressive.

As the Pegasus World Cup approaches, the colt is gearing up for another chance at glory. With his Grade 1 credentials and experience competing against top-notch rivals, he’s a horse ready to give it his all on race day.

Final Takeaway

With First Mission, National Treasure, Skippylongstocking, O’Connor, and Saudi Crown set to compete, this year’s event promises to be a thrilling spectacle of speed, skill, and determination. Stay tuned for more updates and coverage of the Pegasus World Cup as we inch closer to the big day.