Pegasus World Cup winner Knicks Go smashed up his rivals – and the Beyer speed figures scale – with a bloodless 10¼-length victory as he gave weight away in the G3 Cornhusker around two turns on Friday night’s card at Prairie Meadows.
While the concept of a ‘confidence booster’ in the racing world may have more to do with connections than horse, it can’t have done the five-year-old any harm to get back to the winner’s circle for the first time since his Gulfstream Park success in January, which followed a similar effort in the Breeders’ Cup Dirt Mile.
Best Beyers of 2021 ▼
113 Knicks Go 5h (Brad Cox) Prairie Meadows, July 2: Cornhusker G3
109 Essential Quality 3c (Brad Cox) Belmont Park, June 5: Belmont G1 Mischevious Alex 4c (Saffie Joseph) Aqueduct, April 3: Carter G1
108 Country Grammer 4c (Bob Baffert) Santa Anita, April 17: Californian G2 Hot Rod Charlie 3c (Doug O’Neill) Belmont Park, June 5: Belmont G1 Knicks Go 5h (Brad Cox) Gulfstream Park, Jan 23: Pegasus G1 Mystic Guide 4c (Mike Stidham) Oaklawn Park, Feb 27: Razorback G3 Royal Ship 5g (Richard Mandella) Santa Anita, April 17: Californian G2
107 Life Is Good 3c (Bob Baffert) Santa Anita, March 6: San Felipe G2
106 Cezanne 4c (Bob Baffert) Santa Anita, April 18: Kona Gold G3 Country Grammer 4c (Bob Baffert) Santa Anita, (May 31: Hollywood GC G1 Domestic Spending 4g (Chad Brown) Belmont Park, June 5: Manhattan G1 Raging Bull 6h (Chad Brown) Keeneland, April 9: Maker’s Mark Mile G1
Top 2yo Beyer: 93 Big City Lights (Santa Anita, May 2)
Until end July 4. Turf Beyers in italics.
Only fourth in the Saudi Cup and Met Mile on his two most recent starts, Knicks Go was sent off 3-5 favourite as he dropped down the grades. Giving 6lb and more to decent enough opponents, he claimed an early lead from Last Judgement and then ambled round before cruising home.
Clearly, he could have gone faster if he’d been asked for anything – but the display still registered a career-best 113 BSF, easily the best of 2021 so far and four points ahead of the previous highest mark.