Scenic Blast world's top sprinter
Australia’s reigning Horse of the Year Scenic Blast has been rated the world’s equal top sprinter alongside Hong Kong champion Sacred Kingdom.
The two were joined at equal 19th on the World Thoroughbred Rankings for 2009 by the Bart Cummings-trained pair of So You Think and Viewed with European champion Sea The Stars clearly at the top of the list on 136.
The recently retired Sea The Stars was undefeated in 2009 winning six Group One races including the Epsom Derby and the Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe and his ranking is the highest since Peintre Celebre was given 137 in 1997.
Scenic Blast won the Lightning Stakes and Newmarket Handicap last autumn before adding to his Group One tally in the King’s Stand at Royal Ascot.
So You Think led all the way to claim the Cox Plate while Viewed earned his rating with his Caulfield Cup victory.
It was the third consecutive year Australian bred Sacred Kingdom was ranked as the top sprinter either in partnership or on his own.
Brilliant French mare Goldikova (130) was the world’s second highest rated horse ahead of Rip Van Winkle (129), with Fame And Glory and unbeaten United States mare Zenyatta both on 128.
To merit inclusion, a horse must have been rated at 115 or above in the period under review by the World Thoroughbred Rankings Conference.
Of the 333 horses making the listings, 50 were Australian-trained, up from 36 in 2008, which represents a record in any World Thoroughbred Rankings over a 12 month period.
This is the second year the Rankings list all performances throughout the world in the calendar year, irrespective of where individual horses raced or were trained.
Typhoon Tracy was the highest rated Australian filly or mare achieving a rating of 118 in her devastating five length victory in the Myer Classic.
A notable omission from the rankings was Melbourne Cup winner Shocking who received 114 for his victory under 51kg.
Greg Carpenter, Chairman of the ANZ Classifications Committee and Australia’s representative on the WTR Committee, said the 2009 listings again illustrated the dominance of world sprinting by Australian-bred horses.
As well as Scenic Blast and Sacred Kingdom heading the older sprint category, Singapore-trained Rocket Man on 121 was the highest rated three-year-old sprinter in the world.
"The performances of our top three-year-old So You Think and leading stayer Viewed were also considered world class and the record number of Australian horses in the listings provide ample proof of the growing influence on world racing of the Australian racing and breeding industry," Carpenter said