by Gulfstream Park Press Release
December 21, 2019
HALLANDALE BEACH, FL – December 21, 2019 – The Stronach Group announced today that it has secured Runhappy as the presenting sponsor for the 2020 Pegasus World Cup Championship Invitational Series taking place on January 25 at Gulfstream Park.
On December 14, the Pegasus World Cup Championship Invitational Series introduced a new era in the sport of Thoroughbred racing in North America with the announcement that the Pegasus World Cup Invitational (G1) and the Pegasus World Cup Turf Invitational (G1) stakes races will be run medication-free, providing a new and lucrative opportunity for horse owners to showcase their equine athletes by competing free of any medications on race day.
In 2015, Runhappy, an American Thoroughbred race horse, won six consecutive races including the King's Bishop Stakes, the Phoenix Stakes, the Breeders' Cup Sprint and the Malibu Stakes without use of the common race day medication, Lasix. He was later named as the 2015 American Champion Sprint Horse and retired with seven wins in 10 lifetime starts, earning close to $1.5 million having never raced on medication. He has been retired to stud at the legendary Claiborne Farm in Paris, Kentucky and occupies the same stall as the great Secretariat. Runhappy’s first foals will be 2 year-olds of 2020 and will make their racing debut next year.
“We are thrilled to have Runhappy as the presenting sponsor for this year’s Pegasus World Cup Championship Invitational Series,” said Craig Fravel, Chief Executive Officer, Racing, The Stronach Group. “The legacy of Runhappy coupled with this year’s medication-free platform is a fitting partnership as we set a new competitive standard while featuring the finest Thoroughbreds in our game.”
“Team Runhappy is proud to be the presenting sponsor for the Pegasus World Cup Invitational and the Pegasus World Cup Turf Invitational stakes races,” said Jim McIngvale, owner of Runhappy. “The Pegasus World Cup Championship Invitational Series has become a highlight on the racing calendar and to be the presenting sponsor for the 2020 medication-free stakes races is the perfect partnership for us as we honor the great Runhappy.”
This year’s medication-free format for both the Pegasus World Cup Invitational and Pegasus World Cup Turf Invitational is consistent with the International Federation of Horse Racing Authorities (IFHA) standards and will go one step further by giving back two-percent of the purse winnings to Thoroughbred aftercare.
“I know we’re facing competitive challenges from the Dubai World Cup and the Saudi Cup, but I am grateful that The Stronach Group has found a way to keep innovating the Pegasus World Cup Championship Invitational Series. It gives all of us a chance to keep our older, champion horses in training and competition here in the United States, which is great for the sport and for the fans,” said Bob Baffert, who trained Arrogate to win the inaugural Pegasus World Cup Invitational in 2017.
“I find it an interesting concept, the Pegasus World Cup Championship Invitational Series with no medication and I’m excited to be part of it,” said Hall of Famer Richard Mandella. Mandella trains Omaha Beach, owned by Fox Hill Farm. It was announced in November that Omaha Beach will retire after the 2020 Pegasus World Cup Invitational.
The Pegasus World Cup Invitational will be run on the dirt at 1 1/8 miles and will offer a $3 million total purse with 2 percent of the purse donated to Thoroughbred aftercare. The Pegasus World Cup Turf Invitational will be run on the turf at 1 3/16 miles and will offer a $1 million purse with 2 percent of that purse also donated to Thoroughbred Aftercare. The $4 million total purse contribution is entirely provided by The Stronach Group.
In addition to the sponsorship of the 2020 Pegasus World Cup Championship Invitational Series, and the sponsorship of the Runhappy Malibu Stakes (G1) taking place on Opening Day at Santa Anita Park on December 26, Team Runhappy and The Stronach Group will work together to further invest in and promote North American Thoroughbred racing in California, Florida and Maryland by rolling out the Runhappy Matchmaker Series. The Runhappy Matchmaker Series will feature a prestigious race at The Stronach Group owned Gulfstream Park (Florida), Santa Anita Park (California) and Pimlico Race Course (Maryland) with the winner of each race in the series receiving a free breeding, valued at over $25,000, to the great Runhappy at Claiborne Farm.
The 2020 Pegasus World Cup Championship Invitational Series presented by Runhappy will be broadcast live on NBC from 4:30-6:00pm EST on Saturday, January 25.
Tickets are available online at www.pegasusworldcup.com, or by calling the Pegasus World Cup box office at Gulfstream Park at 1-833-464-7924 between 9 a.m. and 6 p.m. daily. Tickets range from $49 to $1000+ per person and offer something for every race-day enthusiast and entertainment seeker. New ticket options for this year’s Pegasus World Cup Championship Invitational Series include an Early Bird Classic General Admission for $49+ if purchased before December 25 and General Admission for children 12 and under for $23.
Xpressbet.com is proud to be the official online betting platform of the Pegasus World Cup Championship Invitational Series.
Follow all of the news and excitement of the 2020 Pegasus World Cup Championship Invitational Series presented by Runhappy on Twitter and Instagram @PegasusWorldCup and on Facebook at Pegasus World Cup.