WORLD THOROUGHBRED RANKINGS 2010

The official listing of the top horses in the world in 2010

Although the equine stars of 2009 had looked a hard act to follow, the class of 2010 proved well up to the mark according to the 2010 World Thoroughbred Rankings.

World Thoroughbred Rankings

Top 10 horses in 2010

click here for complete rankings

Rank

Horse

Rating

Trained

1

HARBINGER (GB)

135

GB

2

BLAME (USA)

129

USA

3

MAKFI (GB)

128

FR

3

QUALITY ROAD (USA)

128

USA

3

WORKFORCE (GB)

128

GB

6

CANFORD CLIFFS (IRE)

127

GB

6

NAKAYAMA FESTA (JPN)

127

JPN

8

CAPE BLANCO (IRE)

126

IRE

8

RIP VAN WINKLE (IRE)

126

IRE

8

SO YOU THINK (NZ)

126

AUS



Leading the way was HARBINGER (GB) [135], who put up a truly exceptional performance to demolish his rivals by 11 lengths in the King George VI & Queen Elizabeth Stakes (sponsored by Betfair) (G1) at Ascot in July. In so doing, he recorded the highest rating in the Ascot showpiece since ST JOVITE (USA) [135] in 1992, and also the highest rating over 2400m since the launch of the World Thoroughbred Rankings in 2004; only SEA THE STARS (IRE) [136] has achieved a higher figure in that time.

Harbinger was unbeaten in four races in 2010, and it was a great shame for both his connections and racing fans alike that his career was cut short by injury.

WORKFORCE (GB) [128] failed to reproduce his best form when fifth behind his illustrious stable companion in the King George, but he showed his true colours when an emphatic seven length winner of the Investec Derby (G1) at Epsom in June, breaking the course record in the process, and when holding off NAKAYAMA FESTA (JPN) [127]  by a head in the Qatar Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe (G1) at Longchamp in October. With his victory in Paris, Workforce became only the sixth horse to complete the Derby/Arc double.

Nakayama Festa topped the list of Japanese-trained horses in 2010, while BUENA VISTA (JPN) [121] was the highest rated Japanese filly/mare on the strength of her victory in the Tenno Sho (Autumn) G1, and she matched that effort when first past the post in the Japan Cup (G1), although she was subsequently disqualified in the latter race and placed second.

Workforce shares the mantle of highest rated 3yo of 2010 with MAKFI (GB) [128]. Having gained his first top flight success in the Stan James.com 2000 Guineas (G1)_ at Newmarket in May, defeating DICK TURPIN (IRE) [124] and CANFORD CLIFFS (IRE) [127], Makfi went on to put up the best performance of his career when overcoming GOLDIKOVA (IRE) [125] and PACO BOY (IRE) [124] in the Prix du Haras de Fresnay-Le-Buffard Jacques Le Marois (G1) at Deauville in August.

Goldikova enjoyed another stellar year, winning five Group 1 races including both the Prix Rothschild (G1) the TVG Breeders’ Cup Mile (G1) for the third successive year. Her impressive success at Churchill Downs in November made her the first horse to win three Breeders’ Cup races, and brought her tally of Group 1 victories to twelve. Having been the second highest rated filly/mare in the 2008 World Rankings behind Zarkava (IRE) [128], Goldikova has now been the highest rated female thoroughbred on turf for the past two years.

Off the Turf, the mighty ZENYATTA (USA) [125] also recorded five more Grade 1 victories, including the Vanity Handicap (G1), the Clement L Hirsch Stakes (G1) and the Lady’s Secret Stakes (G1) for the third successive year, bringing her total of Grade 1s to thirteen. She shares the title of highest rated filly/mare in the world with Goldikova, and retains the prize of being the highest rated filly/mare on a non-turf surface for a second successive year. However, she could not quite cling on to her crown as Breeders’ Cup Classic champion, just failing to catch BLAME (USA) [129] in that never to be forgotten clash on 6th November.

Blame began 2010 on a WTR rating of 117, and progressed throughout the year. After winning a Grade 3 at Pimlico on his seasonal debut in May, he triumphed in the Stephen Foster Handicap (G1) at Churchill Downs in June and the Whitney Handicap (G1) at Saratoga in August, when he defeated QUALITY ROAD (USA) [128]. He tasted defeat for the only time in 2010 when going down to HAYNESFIELD (USA) [121] in the Jockey Club Gold Cup (G1) at Belmont Park in October, but bounced back to fend off Zenyatta in that epic encounter in the Breeders’ Cup Classic the following month.

Blame’s performance in winning the Breeders’ Cup Classic was the highest rated performance of the year on a non turf surface, and sees him rated 1lb above Quality Road, whose 12.75 length romp in the Donn Handicap (G1) at Gulfstream Park in February and head second to Blame in the Whitney established him as the highest rated horse in the mile category on a non turf surface.

Honours were shared at the top of the table for the non turf three year olds, with ESKENDEREYA (USA) [124] and LOOKIN AT LUCKY (USA) [124] locked together.

Eskendereya looked outstanding early in the year with wide margin victories in the Fasig-Tipton Fountain of Youth Stakes (G2) at Gulfstream Park and the Wood Memorial (G1) at Aqueduct before succumbing to injury. Lookin At Lucky took the Preakness Stakes (G1) in May, but put up his best effort when a decisive four length winner of the Izod Haskell Invitational Stakes at Monmouth Park in August.

The sprint division was dominated by horses from the southern hemisphere, with BLACK CAVIAR (AUS) [123] at the top of the tree on the strength of her outstanding four length victory in the Patinack Farm Classic (G1) in November. In the process, Black Caviar became the joint highest rated turf sprinter on WTR ratings alongside Hong Kong-trained duo SILENT WITNESS (AUS) [123] in 2004 and 2005, and SACRED KINGDOM (AUS) [123] in 2007 and 2008.

J J THE JET PLANE (SAF) [122] put up a career best effort to take the Cathy Pacific Hong Kong Sprint (G1) at Sha Tin in December, just edging out ROCKET MAN (AUS) [121] and SACRED KINGDOM (AUS) [121], and in the process became the highest rated South African-trained horse in WTR history, ahead of POCKET POWER (SAF) [121] in 2008.

The top three-year-old sprinter was STARSPANGLEDBANNER (AUS) [121] who, after establishing himself in his native Australia, ventured north to capture the Golden Jubilee Stakes (G1) at Royal Ascot in June, and the Darley July Cup (G1) at Newmarket the following month.

However pride of place among the southern hemisphere horses goes to SO YOU THINK (NZ) [126], whose resounding victories in the Caulfield Yalumba Stakes (G1) and the Longines Mackinnon Stakes (G1) secured him a place in the world’s top ten for 2010, and also the prize of being the highest rated Australian-trained horse since WTR ratings were first published in 2004. RIP VAN WINKLE (IRE) [126] shares top spot with So You Think in the older horse intermediate turf category, while CAPE BLANCO (IRE) [126] filled the same position among the three-year-olds.

So You Think won five races including four Group 1s over distances between 1400m and 2040m between August and October, prior to finishing third in the Emirates Melbourne Cup (G1) over 3200m in early November. Although running a little below his best, he still registered the best staying performance of the year [122] in finishing an honourable third to AMERICAIN (USA) [121].

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The World Thoroughbred Rankings (WTR) are compiled by the World Rankings Supervisory Committee and published by the International Federation of Horseracing Authorities (IFHA).  

 

For further details on the World Thoroughbred Rankings, please contact:
 
Nigel Gray, co-chairman, World Rankings Supervisory Committee
Head of Handicapping and Race Planning, Hong Kong Jockey Club
Telephone +852 2966 8337
Email nigel.c.gray@hkjc.org.hk
 
Garry O'Gorman, co-chairman, World Rankings Supervisory Committee
Senior Flat Handicapper, Irish Turf Club
Telephone +353 5997 26596
Email gaogorman@eircom.net
 
Tom Robbins, chairman, North American Ratings Committee
Executive Vice President, Racing & Industry Relations, Racing Secretary, Del Mar Thoroughbred Club
Telephone +1 858 792 4230
Email tomr@dmtc.com

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The full list and further information on the World Thoroughbred Rankings are available on the IFHA web site http://www.ifhaonline.org 

The next edition of the World Thoroughbred Rankings will be published on 31st March 2011.