2024 Pegasus World Cup – Betting Guide

Chris Adams

Written by: Chris Adams


Read Time: 6 minutes

Pegasus World Cup

The Pegasus World Cup Invitational is a relatively new race to the sport of horse racing. It started at Gulfstream Park in 2017 with a big splash. In 2024 the race looks to crown another champion at the top of the thoroughbred game.

The Pegasus World Cup Stakes

Arrogate wins the inaugural Pegasus World Cup

Arrogate wins the inaugural Pegasus World Cup

In 2017 the brain trust at Gulfstream Park decided to create a marquee event in the dead of winter by offering a $12,000,000 purse on a debut event. The Grade 1 Pegasus World Cup Invitational was born.

Taking the grade 1 status of the Donn Handicap, the race takes place over the classic distance of 1 1/8 mile and is for horses four years old and up. Although the purse has taken a nosedive since 2020 settling in at $3 million, the wealth of talent has made the event must see TV.

Recent superstars like Life is Good, Knicks Go, Gun Runner, and Arrogate all have their name on this prestigious trophy.

How to bet on the Pegasus World Cup Stakes

Thanks to online platforms like Bovada, BetUS, and BetDSI, players can place wagers from the convenience of their own home at tracks around the country.

Gulfstream Park’s menu of prestigious races throughout the racing calendar and large pools make it popular among horse players. Harnessing this popularity Gulfstream races are offered on every major online betting platform.

Adding to the allure of using these sites is the fact that players can increase their bankroll by taking advantage of signup bonuses, promotions, and rebates.

Pegasus World Cup Stakes Bet Types

The Pegasus World Cup offers the same traditional bets offered at Gulfstream Park daily. Here’s a look at the typical wagering menu at Gulfstream.

Single Horse Bets

These wagers require players to pick a single horse to finish somewhere in the top 3.

Bet on a Horse to Win

When players bet on a horse to win, the horse must win the race. This is the most challenging single horse bet but offers the highest return when correct.

Place Wager

The place wager provides a little extra wiggle room, but the payouts are often much less than the win payouts. When betting a horse to place, you are betting that horse will finish in the top 2. If your horse takes first or second, you cash the ticket.

Show Bets

The final single horse bet is the easiest one to hit, but often provides very little return unless you are betting on a longshot. When betting to show your horse must come in first, second, or third for you to cash a ticket.

Verticals Wagers

Vertical wagers refer to picking horses in multiple finishing positions. One of the unique aspects of vertical wagers is the ability to play them straight, boxed, or wheeled. These concepts can be applied to any of the vertical wagers.

Straight Wager

In this case, the player is predicting the exacta order of finish. The wager will cost the denomination of the wager placed. Betting a $1 trifecta on 1-2-3 will cost $1 but the final order of finish must be #1 in first, #2 in second, and #3 in third to win.

Boxed Wager – Opposite of Straight Wager

A 3-8-14 Trifecta Box is a winning wager in this race

Boxing is the opposite of a straight wager. When a wager is boxed, players cover every possible combination of the horses they selected. However, you will have to pay for each combination.

The same $1 trifecta on 1-2-3 will now be more expensive but give you more chances to win. A $1 trifecta box on 1-2-3 will cost $6 because there are 6 different combinations that 1, 2, and 3 can finish together in the top three spots.

Boxes can include more horses than finishing positions, but the cost will escalate quickly. For example, a 4 horse $1 trifecta box has 24 possible winning combinations and would cost $24.

Wheels – Between the Cost Efficiency of Straight Bets and the Coverage of Boxes

Spending $24 on a 4-horse trifecta box may seem a bit steep. Wheels can be a nice hybrid between the cost efficiency of straight bets and the coverage of boxes. In a wheel bet, players isolate horses in specific positions.

Let’s say that you like horses 1, 2, 3, 4, and 5 in the race to cover the top 3 positions. For a $1 trifecta box this is going to cost $60. However, your opinion is that #1 or #2 is likely to be the winner and #5 is only a threat to clunk up into third.

Doing The Math

Using this information, you can now bet a $1 trifecta wheel the 1, 2 over the 1, 2, 3, 4 over the 1, 2, 3, 4, 5. That $60 wager has now been reduced to $18 (2 possibilities in first, 3 possibilities in second, and 3 possibilities in third or 2x3x3x$1).

Although this option doesn’t cover as many combinations as the box, it still gives you adequate coverage while matching your wager to your opinion.

With the knowledge of how to bet verticals, let’s look at the wagers offered in this category.

Exacta Wager

The exacta is usually a $1 minimum wager and requires the player to have the first and second place horses correct.

Trifecta Bets – With Increased Difficulty comes Increased Payouts

Trifecta’s provide a little extra challenge with the bettor needing to correctly pick the first, second, and third place horses. With the increased difficulty comes increased payouts. The minimum denomination for this wager at Santa Anita is $1.


Hitting the superfecta in any race is no small feat, but it is particularly difficult in a big field. This wager requires players to select the top 4 finishers in order. The difficulty makes this bet daunting, but the reward if hit tends to compensate for the added risk.

Most days you can play the wager for as low as $.10.

Horizontal Wagers


These wagers are called horizontal because they require players to select the winner of multiple races in a row or in a particular sequence.

Daily Double – Simplest of all horizontal wagers

The Daily Double is the simplest of all horizontal wagers requiring the player to select winners of 2 races.

Pick X

These wagers can require players to pick anywhere from 3 to 6 races within a given sequence. The payouts tend to correlate with the number of legs in the sequence meaning that a pick 3 is likely to have the lowest payout, while a pick 6 score is usually the largest payout of any wager at the track on a given day.

These wagers can range anywhere from $.50 minimums to $2 depending on the wager type and track.

Pegasus World Cup Picks

Life is Good won the 2022 Pegasus World Cup

Betting News provides handicapping tools that allow players to sort through the data of a race at Gulfstream Park. Along with the Pegasus World Cup card, these tools are available every day for the Florida track.

To get a full picture of the race, a more subjective narrative analysis can bolster the data provided. Betting News covers a vast majority of the graded stakes races throughout the year in our weekly articles.

Pegasus World Cup Stakes Historical Information

While not necessarily valuable for handicapping the upcoming race, it can be interesting to look back at past results to see if any trends pop out. Which trainers produce the most winners? Which post position is most valuable? How often does the favorite win?

Let’s take a look at past winners of the Pegasus World Cup.

Past Pegasus World Cup Stakes Winners

2023Art CollectorJunior AlvaradoWilliam I. Mott1+1⁄8 miles
2022Life Is GoodIrad Ortiz Jr.Todd A. Pletcher1+1⁄8 miles
2021Knicks GoJoel RosarioBrad H. Cox1+1⁄8 miles
2020Mucho GustoIrad Ortiz Jr.Bob Baffert1+1⁄8 miles
2019City of LightJavier CastellanoMichael W. McCarthy1+1⁄8 miles
2018Gun RunnerFlorent GerouxSteven M. Asmussen1+1⁄8 miles
2017ArrogateMike E. SmithBob Baffert1+1⁄8 miles

 How to watch the Pegasus World Cup

The Pegasus World Cup Invitational is one of the major horse racing events of the year. The race is one of the few marquee events in the sport that earns a place on network television.

The 2024 Pegasus and portions of the undercard can be seen on NBC from 4:30-6:30 PM EST. Coverage will also be streamed on Peacock.

For those wanting to watch the full card of races, there are a couple of different options. Fans could choose to buy a subscription to Racetrack Television Network or stream the events through their favorite online racebooks including  Bovada and BetDSI.