For the second year running, thebreedingshed has analysed the annual list of the World’s Best Racehorses recently published by the International Federation of Horseracing Authorities. As last year, a rating of 118 provides an approximate cut-off point for producing a ‘top hundred’ list; 96 horses were given a rating of 118 or more in 2015 compared with 104 in 2014.
Sires with two or more representatives in the ‘top hundred’ are listed below with the country in which they stand at stud and, where available, a current stud fee. Each sire is listed with his runners in the ‘top hundred’ and their ratings.
DUBAWI 9 England (£225,000)
Al Kazeem (122), New Bay (122), Postponed (121), Prince Bishop (121), Erupt (120), Hunter’s Light (119), Mubtaahij (119), Night of Thunder (118), Time Test (118)
GALILEO 6 Ireland (private)
Order of St George (124), Gleneagles (122), Highland Reel (121), Found (120), Bondi Beach (118), Mondialiste (118)
DEEP IMPACT 4 Japan (¥30,000,000)
A Shin Hikari (123), Last Impact (119), Real Impact (118), Staphanos (118)
DYLAN THOMAS 2 Ireland (€5,000)
Blazing Speed (121), Pether’s Moon (118)
HOLY ROMAN EMPEROR 2 Ireland (€17,500)
Designs On Rome (123), Mongolian Khan (121)
KING KAMEHAMEHA 2 Japan (¥10,000,000)
Duramente (121), Lovely Day (121)
SCREEN HERO 2 Japan
Maurice (121), Gold Actor (119)
SEBRING 2 Australia (A$66,000)
Criterion (120), Dissident (118)
SHAMARDAL 2 Ireland (private)
Able Friend (125), Dan Excel (119)
TAPIT 2 USA ($300,000)
Frosted (120), Tonalist (120)
TEOFILO 2 Ireland (€50,000)
Arod (118), Kermadec (118)
This year only 11 sires had more than one representative in the ‘top hundred’ compared with 18 last year. Of last year’s sires, King Kamehameha and Tapit again have two representatives in the ‘top hundred’, Deep Impact again has four, Galileo has one fewer than last year with six, while Dubawi moves past Galileo to become the new leader with nine horses among the world’s top hundred, up from four last year.
Dubawi’s total reflects his excellent season in Europe but three of his best horses had already got his year off to a flying start in Dubai. Besides Prince Bishop emulating Dubawi’s sire Dubai Millennium by winning the Dubai World Cup, Hunter’s Light and Mubtaahij were successful in the Jebel Hatta and UAE Derby respectively.
With the exception of Woodbine Mile winner Mondialiste, Galileo’s best horses were all three-year-olds trained by Aidan O’Brien. There were high-profile victories for Gleneagles in the 2000 Guineas and Found in the Breeders’ Cup Turf but Galileo’s best horse according to the ratings was wide-margin Irish St Leger winner Order of St George.
Dubawi and Galileo were not the only representatives of bloodstock superpowers Darley and Coolmore to figure among the most successful sires. Darley’s Irish-based pair Shamardal and Teofilo had two horses each in the top hundred. Shamardal’s pair Able Friend and Dan Excel were rivals as well as stablemates in Hong Kong where the former was named Horse of the Year for the 2014/15 season. Dan Excel won the final running of the Singapore Airlines International Cup.
Galileo’s son Teofilo had a colt from each hemisphere in the top hundred thanks to Arod and the New Zealand-bred Kermadec, winner of the Doncaster Mile and George Main Stakes at Randwick. Arod was less successful in Australia later in the year but won group races at Epsom and Ascot in the summer.
Galileo’s Coolmore studmate Holy Roman Emperor also had leading performers north and south of the equator. Designs On Rome’s big win came in the Hong Kong Gold Cup, while Mongolian Khan added the Caulfield Cup to his New Zealand and Australian Derby victories from earlier in the year.
A son of Danehill like Holy Roman Emperor, Dylan Thomas didn’t live up to his initial stud fee of €50,000 at Coolmore but his presence on the above list rather makes a mockery of his current fee of €5,000. Another sire with a leading performer in Hong Kong (Audemars Piguet Queen Elizabeth II Cup winner Blazing Speed), Dylan Thomas also had the Coronation Cup winner Pether’s Moon.
While some of the above-named stallions have earned some of their success as a result of shuttling down under, Sebring is very much a home-grown Australian sire. Successful in the Golden Slipper at two, Sebring is a son of the King’s Bishop Stakes winner More Than Ready and sire of Australia’s 2014/15 Horse of the Year and champion sprinter Dissident, though his other top hundred representative Criterion (Queen Elizabeth Stakes and Caulfield Stakes winner in 2015) is a middle-distance performer.
Sebring represents the Halo sire line which has been phenomenally successful in Japan thanks to Sunday Silence and now his son Deep Impact. Champion sire again in Japan, it was noteworthy that Deep Impact’s best horses included significant winners beyond the shores of Japan in A Shin Hikari (Hong Kong Cup) and Real Impact (George Ryder Stakes in Australia), while Staphanos was runner-up in Hong Kong in the Audemars Piguet Queen Elizabeth II Cup.
A Shin Hikari might have been Japan’s best horse, but miler Maurice, unbeaten in 2015, was voted Japan’s Horse of the Year, he too gaining a win at Hong Kong’s International meeting in the Hong Kong Mile. Gold Actor’s win in the Arima Kinen later in December gave their sire, the Japan Cup winner Screen Hero, a last-minute second representative in the world’s top hundred.
Japan’s third stallion in the above list King Kamehameha was the subject of this article earlier this month so needs little adding about him except to say that his sire Kingmambo has since died at the age of 26 in Kentucky.
Only one American-based sire has more than one representative in the top hundred. Appropriately enough, that is the most expensive stallion in the US, Tapit, who was champion sire again in 2015. Of his five Grade 1 winners during the year, four-year-old Tonalist (Jockey Club Gold Cup and Cigar Mile) and three-year-old Frosted (Wood Memorial) made it into the top hundred.
[Images courtesy of Sjp22 (Al Kazeem) and Chabata k (Maurice)]