Pletcher Holds Strong Hand in Pegasus Turf

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Todd PletcherCoglianese

Todd Pletcher saddles a strong trio in Colonel Liam (Liam's Map) Largent (Into Mischief) and Social Paranoia (Street Boss) in Saturday's $1-million GI Pegasus World Cup Turf Invitational S. at Gulfstream. Breaking his maiden via DQ in his career bow over the main track here in April, the $1.2-million OBSAPR buy was third next out in a sloppy optional claimer in Hallandale in May and scored a decisive victory when switched to the lawn at Saratoga July 22. Fourth in the Saratoga Derby Invitational S. Aug. 15, the gray rallied to win the Tropical Park Derby last time over this course Dec. 26.

Never worse than second in his career, Largent captured the Edward P. Evans S. at Colonial July 29 and was second next out in the Lure S. at Saratoga Sept. 7. Capturing Laurel's Bert Allen S. by a neck Oct. 9, the gelding closed strongly to take the local GII Fort Lauderdale S. by two lengths Dec. 12.

Rounding out the Pletcher trio is Social Paranoia, winner of this venue's GIII Appleton S. last March. Third in the Sunshine Forever S. next out here in May, the dark bay was off the board in the GII Fort Marcy S. June 6, but rebounded with a pair of wins in the July 4 GIII Poker S. and a Dec. 16 optional claimer in Hallandale.

“The mile and three-sixteenths is a little different distance for Largent,” said Pletcher. “He's never been quite that far but the way he ran in the Fort Lauderdale going a mile and an eighth certainly gives you confidence he'll handle it.”

He continued, “Social Paranoia has won as far as a mile and five-sixteenths, and Colonel Liam was a little bit unlucky in the Saratoga Derby at a mile and a quarter. I think [the distance] should work for all three of them.”

Anothertwistafate (Scat Daddy) has taken to the turf since switching to the Peter Miller barn a few months ago. Previously trained by Blaine Wright, the dark bay won the 2019 El Camino Real Derby on synthetic and was second in both the GIII Sunland Park Derby and GIII Lexington S. that term. Off the board in the GI Preakness S. in May of 2019, he was sent to the sidelines and resurfaced 16 months later with a win in the GIII Longacres Mile H. Sept. 10. Transferred to Miller, Anothertwistafate made his turf debut in the GII Seabiscuit H. Nov. 28, finishing fourth, and captured the GII San Gabriel S. last time at Santa Anita Jan. 2.

“I don't think [distance] will be an issue,” Miller said. “He's the type of horse that doesn't seem to get tired. He's got a lot of stamina and is built like a horse that can get a mile and a half.”

Another contender of interest is Joe Allen homebred North Dakota (Medaglia d'Oro). Victorious in a Colonial optional claimer July 28, the Shug McGaughey trainee was fourth in the 12-panel GIII Sycamore S. at Keeneland Oct. 15 and made a bold late run to take Aqueduct's GIII Red Smith S. last time Nov. 21.

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