The $150,000 TVG.com Pegasus Stakes drew just five runners at Monmouth Park, and Kentucky Derby runner-up Mandaloun (3-5)returns to the track as the heavy favorite for Sunday’s race.
Mandaloun arrived from Churchill Downs early Friday morning. He’s been working beautifully for trainer Brad Cox since finishing second in the “Run for the Roses” while running his fastest race in six starts. Mandaloun will be competing in the 1 1/16-mile Pegasus as a prep for the Haskell Stakes at Monmouth on July 17 as well.
TVG Pegasus Stakes
1 – Brooklyn Strong (9-2)
2 – Mandaloun (3-5)
3 – Dr Jack (5-1)
4 – Weyburn (7-2)
5 – Lugamo (20-1)
After winning the Risen Star in February, Mandaloun was the prohibitive favorite in the Louisiana Derby, but he fell flat to miss the board and finish out of the money in his only race among six starts. After bouncing back to finish second in the Kentucky Derby, Mandaloun skipped the Preakness and Belmont Stakes to prepare for the Pegasus and Haskell. He will be ridden by Florent Geroux, who has not raced at Monmouth Park since the new whip rule has gone into effect.
There was no sympathy or refund for those who bet on Mandaloun in the Kentucky Derby after winner Medina Spirit was found to have tested positive for an illegal drug, betamethasone. But no decision has been reached on Medina Spirit keeping or forfeiting his Derby title and allowing Mandaloun to be declared the winner.
Weyburn is the main challenger to Mandaloun in the Pegasus Stakes, according to the morning line odds. Weyburn finished fourth in his last start in the Wood Memorial.
The TVG.com Pegasus Stakes is Race 10 on Sunday, June 13, with a post time of 4:50 p.m. EST.
More Monmouth Park Weekend News
After Monmouth Park dealt with horse racing’s black eye and drug testing last year, one of the track’s biggest races went off last summer in the Haskell Stakes. Ny Traffic finished second in the Grade I TVG.com Haskell in July, and he returns to Monmouth to race Saturday in the $150,000 Grade III Salvator Mile. Ny Traffic (9-5) is the prohibitive favorite in the field of 10, with post time for the 1-mile race at 4:28 p.m. on June 12.