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Publication of Longines World’s Best Racehorse Rankings 2018

Publication of Longines World’s Best Racehorse Rankings 2018


Please find below an overview of the Longines World’s Best Racehorse Rankings 2018 and the Irish Thoroughbred Racehorse Rankings 2018 which were published today.



The GB-trained four year old colt CRACKSMAN (GB)(130) and the evergreen Australian wonder mare WINX (AUS)(130) jointly topped the ‘Longines World’s Best Racehorse Rankings’ list for 2018. Cracksman (GB) was champion 3-y-o European colt in 2017 on a mark of 130 and he achieved that rating once again in repeating his wide margin success in the QIPCO Champion Stakes (G1) at Ascot in October. Winx (AUS) has been rated 132 in both 2016 and 2017 but ironically her lower rating in 2018 resulted in her topping the overall Longines Rankings for the first time.

Cracksman (GB) is the highest rated older colt since his own sire FRANKEL (GB)(140) in 2012 and is also the first British-trained colt to top the Rankings since Frankel in 2011 and 2012. While Winx (AUS) created history by becoming the first horse to win four G1 Ladbrokes Cox Plates (one of her seven Group 1 successes in 2018 in which she extended her astonishing unbeaten run to 29 races, 22 of which were Group 1 races), her best performance was in the Longines Queen Elizabeth Stakes (G1) at Randwick in April.

2018 was the third consecutive year that Winx (AUS) topped the World Filly/Mare standings but remarkably both TREVE(FR)(130/126/126) from 2013-2015 and BLACK CAVIAR (AUS)(132/130/130) from 2011 to 2013 have also had similar three year ‘reigns’ in this respect but Winx (AUS) stays in training in 2019 and could yet make it four in a row. Indeed, when Black Caviar (AUS) and Treve (FR) jointly topped the 2013 Longines Rankings it was the only previous occasion since the World Rankings were reconstituted in 2004 that fillies/mares have topped the Rankings outright until Winx (AUS) emulated that feat in 2018.

Winx (AUS) was also the Joint Top Rated Miler in the World on Turf in 2018 for her G1 win in the Chipping Norton Stakes (G1) at Randwick in March, an accolade she shares with the joint highest ever rated Hong Kong colt – BEAUTY GENERATION (NZ) (127), who improved on his 2017 rating by 9lbs in winning the Longines Hong Kong Mile (G1) at Sha Tin in December.

Winx (AUS) was the best but was not the only exceptional filly/mare we saw in 2018. The Britishtrained ENABLE (GB)(125) became only the second horse since the Irish colt ALLEGED (USA) in 1978 to win back to back Qatar Prix de l’Arc de Triomphes (G1) at Paris Longchamp in October, following in the recent footsteps of fellow mare Treve in 2013-2014. Although rated 3lbs below her 2017 level, Enable (GB) also managed to become the first Arc winner to subsequently win the Longines Breeders Cup Turf (G1) at Churchill Downs in November after seven previous attempts at the double had been unsuccessful since 1986.

Two other exceptional fillies jointly topped the World 3-y-o filly rankings, namely the Irish-trained ALPHA CENTAURI (IRE)(124) and the Japanese trained ALMOND EYE (JPN)(124). Alpha Centauri (IRE) won four Group One races and was the dominant miler in Europe and is the highest rated Irish 3-y-o filly since RIDGEWOOD PEARL (GB)(126) in 1995 while ALMOND EYE (JPN) is the highest rated Japanese filly/mare since Japan joined the former International Classifications in the 1990s. She emulated GENTILDONNA (JPN)(122) in 2012 in winning the Japanese Triple Crown for fillies before beating the colts/older horses in the Japan Cup (G1) at Tokyo in November but rated 2lbs higher than the latter in so doing.

The British-trained ROARING LION (USA)(127) was the World’s Best 3-y-o Colt on turf in 2018. He won four Group 1 races in total but his best performance was at York in August when he comfortably defeated the King George VI and Queen Elizabeth Stakes (G1) (Sponsored by QIPCO) winner POET’S WORD (IRE)(126).




2018 was a mixed year on the racecourse from an Irish viewpoint. Irish-trained horses won four of the five domestic Classics and it was noteworthy that they were trained by four different trainers – Ken Condon trained ROMANISED (IRE)(117) to win the Tattersalls Irish 2,000 Guineas, the Jessica Harrington trained ALPHA CENTAURI (IRE)(124) won the Tattersalls Irish 1,000 Guineas, Joseph O’Brien trained the Dubai Duty Free Irish Derby winner LATROBE (IRE)(115), while his father Aidan trained the 3-y-o FLAG OF HONOUR (IRE)(117) to win the Comer Group International Irish St Leger. However only two of the remaining eight Group 1 races held in Ireland were won by Irish-trained horses, testifying to a less stellar year internationally than enjoyed in recent years. However one of these races – The Coolmore Fastnet Rock Matron Stakes at Leopardstown – was the highest rated race in the world confined to fillies and mares.

There were a number of highlights however, most notably the achievement of the aforementioned Alpha Centauri in winning four Group 1 races and in the process becoming Joint World Champion 3-y-o filly on Turf (along with the crack Japanese filly ALMOND EYE (JPN)(124)). The Aidan O’Brien 3-y-o filly MAGICAL (IRE)(122), while defeated by dual Arc winner ENABLE (GB)(125) in the Longines Breeders Cup Turf, achieved a rating equal to PEEPING FAWN (IRE)(2008) and MINDING(IRE)(2016) but never previously bettered by a Ballydoyle-trained 3-y-o filly.

KEW GARDENS (IRE)(120), in winning the William Hill St. Leger at Doncaster, was the top 3- y-o Stayer in the World on turf. US NAVY FLAG (USA)(119) was champion European 3-y-o Turf printer while RHODODENDRON (IRE)(117) was Joint Champion European Older Mare at a mile.

Full rankings available here


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