Life Is Good, ridden by Irad Ortiz Jr., wins the Big Ass Fans Dirt Mile at Del Mar on Nov. 6, 2021. Alex Evers /Eclipse Sportswire/Breeders Cup

Life Is Good Tops Pletcher’s Pegasus Workers

Edited Press Release

CHC Inc. and WinStar Farm’s Life Is Good, dominant winner of the Breeders’ Cup Dirt Mile (G1) in his most recent start, continues to train forwardly toward his 4-year-old debut in the $3 million Pegasus World Cup Invitational (G1) Jan. 29 at Gulfstream Park.

The return of the Pegasus World Cup and $1 million Pegasus World Cup Turf (G1) and debut of the $500,000 Pegasus Filly & Mare Turf (G3) headline a Pegasus Day program featuring seven graded-stakes worth $5.2 million in purses. All three Pegasus races are for older horses.

Life Is Good was among two dozen horses breezing for Hall of Fame trainer Todd Pletcher the morning of Jan. 8 at Palm Beach Downs. The Into Mischief colt was clocked 1:00.41 for five furlongs, fifth-fastest of 11 horses.

“He’s a phenomenal workhorse. He’s a very talented, gifted animal that when you watch him breeze you kind of look at your stopwatch and it doesn’t look like what you’d expect to see when he’s doing it. He’s doing it so easily,” Pletcher said. “He continues to train very impressively. We’re three weeks out and we’re happy with where we are.”

Fellow Pegasus World Cup candidate Fearless worked a half-mile in :50.04 Saturday. Repole Stable’s Fearless exits a four-length victory in the Harlan’s Holiday (G3) Dec. 18 at Gulfstream, where he also won the Gulfstream Park Mile (G2) last February.

Among the stakes on the Pegasus undercard is the $150,000 Fred W. Hooper (G3) for 4-year-olds and up going one mile on the main track.

“Fearless continues to train really well. Happy with him,” Pletcher said. “We haven’t decided. I talked to Mike Repole and right now we’re leaning toward the mile race that day on the undercard.”

Pegasus Turf candidates Colonel Liam and Never Surprised were also on Saturday’s work tab. Robert and Lawana Low’s Colonel Liam, the defending champion, went five furlongs in 1:00.46 while Never Surprised, winner of the Dec. 26 Tropical Turf at Gulfstream, had a half-mile move in :51.01.

The Lows also own Sweet Melania, who earned her third career graded-stakes triumph in the Dec. 18 Suwannee River (G3) Dec. 18 at Gulfstream and is being pointed to the Pegasus Filly & Mare Turf. The American Pharoah mare worked four furlongs in :50.32.

“Colonel Liam, very good breeze with him again this morning. We’re on a tight schedule, but everything has gone right so far and I think we’re approaching the race the way you’d hope. Never Surprised bounced out of the Tropical Derby very well, just a maintenance breeze this morning. Happy with him,” Pletcher said. “Sweet Melania, she was good this morning, too. So far, everything’s gone according to plan.”

Pletcher said Donegal Racing’s Mo Donegal, last out winner of the Dec. 4 Remsen (G2) at Aqueduct, will make his sophomore debut in the $250,000 Holy Bull (G3) Feb. 5, Gulfstream’s next stop for 3-year-olds on the road to the $1 million Curlin Florida Derby (G1) April 2.

Mo Donegal worked five furlongs in 1:00.46 Saturday at Palm Meadows, his third breeze since arriving in South Florida.

“Very good work, happy with him,” Pletcher said. “He’s right on schedule for the Holy Bull.”

Pletcher also provided an update on WinStar Farm and Siena Farm’s Emmanuel, a 3-year-old More Than Ready colt that debuted with a front-running 6 ¾-length triumph in a one-mile maiden special weight Dec. 11 at Gulfstream. He was scratched from a one-mile, 40-yard optional claiming allowance Friday at Tampa Bay Downs.

“He spiked a 102.5 temperature the morning after we entered,” Pletcher said. “It’s kind of frustrating. We were kind of hoping to get some two-turn experience at Tampa. He’s fine, he’s going back to the track tomorrow. Now we’ve just got to regroup and find out we’re going to come back.”