Since decimating the 2017 Breeders’ Cup Classic and cementing his place as the best racehorse in the world, Gun Runner has been preparing for his final challenge. The now five-year-old logged a brutally fast 2018 Pegasus workout at Fair Grounds, blasting through three-quarters of a mile in 1:10 3/5. It’s exactly the type of pace that trainer Steve Asmussen has come to expect from his beloved trainee.
The more specific details of the workout include eighth-mile splits in :12 2/5 for the first furlong, followed by :24 flat for the quarter-mile, :35 1/5 for three-eighths, :47 3/5 for the half, and :58 1/5 for five-eighths, capitalized by gallop-out times of 1:24 3/5 for seven furlongs and 1:39 1/5 for a mile. All in all, a great way to kick off the New Year.
“He worked amazing. Time to pick it up with him, and obviously he’s very willing,” Asmussen said of the 2018 Pegasus workout for Gun Runner. “He looked wonderful and cooled out great. He’s just fast.”
Getting a solid training session in for Gun Runner was imperative given that the entire country has been frigid outside of the Pacific Southwest. “We have a little pending weather coming, and we’re most likely going to miss a couple of days,” Asmussen continued. “I really wanted him to get something out of this, in case the weather lingers around. So we did ask him to pick it up today. I thought he did it nicely. He looked great. If all is perfect, we’ll have two more works here before we go to Gulfstream.”
As reported earlier, Gun Runner is set to retire following the $12 million Pegasus World Cup where he will likely be the heavy favorite. The expected 2017 Horse of the Year will travel to Florida to settle in at Gulfstream Park on January 18th and then take just over a week to get his last 2018 Pegasus workout sessions in before the race cracks open on January 27th.