On January 25, 2020, thousands of spectators arrived at Gulfstream Park for The Pegasus World Cup Championship. Now in its fourth year ̶ the American Thoroughbred horse race’s first running was on January 28, 2017 ̶ there was no shortage of celebrities, fascinators, beautiful fashion, music, drinks, or entertainment.
For the big horse racing fan, it was thrilling to see second choice Mucho Gusto ridden by Irad Ortiz Jr. run a nearly perfect race to take home the $3 million purse in the 2020 Pegasus World Cup Championship Invitational. Zulu Alpha ridden by Tyler Gaffalione took home the $1 million purse in 2020 Pegasus World Cup Turf Invitational.
Mucho Gusto was bred in Kentucky by Peruvian equestrian Bernardo Alvarez Calderon and is currently owned by Saudi Prince Faisal bin Khalid. His trainer, Hall of Famer Bob Baffert, has won five Kentucky Derbies, seven Preakness Stakes, three Belmont Stakes and three Kentucky Oaks. This was the first time Ortiz rode this horse and it was clearly a match made in heaven.
While Mucho Gusto and Zulu Alpha were the big winners that day, it’s hard to ignore Saturday’s other big winner, nightlife.
Attending a horse race in South Florida isn’t complete without a bit of Miami nightlife brought into the mix. David Grutman’s Pegasus LIV Stretch Village was the spot to be for those who were more in it for the party than the racing. This LIV nightclub-ish VIP zone provided a great view of the race but also of the numerous celebrities in attendance. Jennifer Lopez, Alex Rodriguez, Vin Diesel, Jake Paul, Zion, Alec Monopoly, Cedric Gervais, Dave Portnoy, and Miami Heat’s Kelly Olynyk & Justise Winslow mingled with 1/ST Chairman and President Belinda Stronach, Nikki Walker, DJ Frank Walker among others in the coveted VIP zones. Yes, there was a VIP within the VIP.
The VIP within the VIP, located upstairs, featured an open bar and unique view to the race and the stage below. Everyone else in the village had to pay for their drinks but were still very much a part of the action that made up this unique Gulfstream experience.
Following the race, T-Pain and Nelly took to the stage to perform their greatest hits. DJs Cassidy and Martin 2 Smoove were also in attendance to keep the music pumping throughout the evening.
As if an exciting horse race and a world-class entertainment village weren’t enough, new this year was @TheNaughtyFork tasting village by Forbes 30-under-30 influencer Samantha Schnu and the first-ever Runway on The Rail Style Competition crowing the 2020 Pegasus World Cup “Style Icon” in partnership with Neiman Marcus, Shapoh.com & Nini Jewels.
Entrants to Runway on The Rail walked the runway in their race day finest as NBC 6’s Kelly Blanco, Hadley Henriette of Neiman Marcus & Suzy Buckley Woodward of Shapoh.com judged the looks among those looking to be the “Pegasus World CupStyle Icon.” Contestants vied to win a Nini Jewels Aya Starfish diamond ring (retail value of $18,000), a lavish shopping spree courtesy of Neiman Marcus Bal Harbour (retail value of $1,500), and a VIP experience to the 2021 Pegasus World Cup Championship Invitational Series.
The 2020 Pegasus World Cup Style Icon Winner, Miami’s Lauren Coleman stole the show, wowing judges in a stunning Zimmerman floral dress and brimmed cream fascinator by Shapoh.com. Runner up Michael Brown was dapper in a pink suit, and in third place was Miami local Carol Iacovelli in an ice blue Chanel boucle outfit topped with a matching fascinator by Shapoh.com.
This year’s Pegasus proved it could continue to raise the bar on what is already one of South Florida’s most anticipated events.