Oaklawn-based Bravazo tuned up for the $3 million Pegasus World Cup Invitational (G1) Jan. 25 at Gulfstream Park with a 5-furlong workout after the renovation break Monday morning for Hall of Fame trainer D. Wayne Lukas and Calumet Farm, which bred and owns the son of Awesome Again.
Breezing over a fast, sealed surface, Bravazo's time of 1:01 was the fastest of 12 works recorded at the distance. The move represented the second published work for Bravazo since finishing eighth in his comeback race, the $600,000 Clark Stakes (G1) Nov. 29 at Churchill Downs.
“Good work yesterday,” Lukas said Tuesday morning. “Real good. I thought the track was a little bit sticky, yet he still went in a minute. That was good.”
Lukas said Bravazo is scheduled to ship to south Florida Jan. 20.
Bravazo, in his 4-year-old debut, finished fourth in the 2019 Pegasus World Cup before being sidelined following surgery to remove a bone chip from a knee. In his first work following the Clark, Bravazo covered 5 furlongs in 1:01.40 Dec. 23.
“He's right on target, barring any unforeseen setbacks,” Lukas said.
Lukas said the 1 1/8-mile Pegasus World Cup is the start of an ambitious three-race global campaign for Bravazo, who was among the country's leading 3-year-olds in 2018.
Following the Pegasus World Cup, Lukas said Bravazo is scheduled to compete in the inaugural $20 million Saudi Cup – the world's richest race – Feb. 29 in Saudi Arabia and the $12 million Dubai World Cup (G1) March 28 in the United Arab Emirates.
“That's our plan,” Lukas said. “That isn't everybody's plan. I hear these guys saying, 'Well, they think they're waiting for Saudi and not run in the Pegasus.' To hell with that, I'm running in all three of them. I think he thrives on work. If I don't do that, seriously, we'd put probably four or five more works into him. That's probably as shaky as anything.”
In 2018, Bravazo won an entry-level allowance race at Oaklawn and the $400,000 Risen Star Stakes (G2) at Fair Grounds before finishing second in the Preakness at Pimlico and $1 million Haskell Invitational Stakes (G1) at Monmouth Park and third in the $1.25 million Travers Stakes (G1) at Saratoga and $1 million Breeders' Cup Dirt Mile (G1) at Churchill Downs.
Bravazo has 3-4-3 record from 18 lifetime starts and earnings of $2,009,528.
Also pointing for the Pegasus World Cup is Omaha Beach, Oaklawn's top 3-year-old in 2019 after winning the second division of the $750,000 Rebel Stakes (G1) and $1 million Arkansas Derby (G1). Omaha Beach, in his final prep for the Pegasus, won the $300,000 Malibu Stakes (G1) Saturday at Santa Anita.
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