My Top 10 Horses in Aust Racing for the Decade

West Coast
Hi everyone, I hope you all had a good Christmas. I thought I would put together my own list of the top 10 horses of the decade in Australian racing. Some or all of you may not agree with the horses in the list and that's fine - I respect that. This list is based off my own opinions. Finally, I'd like to wish you all a Happy New Year and a great 2020. Cheers.

Aust Racing - Top 10 Horses of the Decade: 2010 - 2019

Equal 1. Black Caviar
25 Starts: 25-0-0
Group 1 Wins This Decade: 15 (15 overall)
Total Group/Listed Wins 24
Prizemoney: $7,953,936
Peak Timeform Rating: 136

Comment: I have decided to put Black Caviar at equal number 1 (with Winx). Initially I had Black Caviar as number 1 then I had Winx at number 1 but in the end I thought that I'd be fair to both horses and put them both as number 1. Black Caviar was undefeated throughout her whole career - that is an outstanding effort - 25 starts for 25 wins...just remarkable. She won Group 1 races from 1000m to 1400m and its a shame we never got to see her at 1600m. Black Caviar is arguably Australia's best ever sprinter who raced in a strong era of sprinting in Australia - beating the likes of Star Witness, Hay List, Ortensia and Buffering. The latter two winning Group 1 races overseas and Star Witness who was also placed twice overseas at Royal Ascot. Her most famous win in my opinion was when she won overseas, away from the comforts of home and ran a gutsy race in the Diamond Jubilee Stakes at Royal Ascot. She broke down during the race but still won. But at the end of the day, it's that magical "25 starts for 25 wins" which she will be remembered for . I doubt we will see the likes of her again for a long...long time.

Equal 1. Winx
43 Starts: 37-3-0
Group 1 Wins This Decade: 25 (25 overall)
Total Group/Listed Wins: 35
Prizemoney: $26,451,174
Peak Timeform Rating: 134

Comment: Winx is in at equal number 1. I didn't think it was fair to put Winx at number 2 because of her outstanding career. What a career it was - 25 Group 1 race wins (a world record) which includes 4 Cox Plates - the first horse to achieve this....an outstanding effort. Winx won Group 1s from 1400m to 2200m. She had a devastating turn of foot and could rattle off sectionals that sprinters could produce. Perhaps the only glaring missing achievement in her career is a Group 1 win away from home outside Australia. Apart from this, Winx like Black Caviar, captured the hearts of Australian racing fans during her career and her fame spread throughout the world too. A top class mare. Her 2016 Cox Plate win was an 8 length margin and in my opinion her greatest win and she won with ease.

2. So You Think
23 Starts: 14-4-1
Group 1 Wins This Decade: 9 (10 overall)
Total Group/Listed Wins: 13
Prizemoney: $8,813,497
Peak Timeform Rating: 133

Comment: Had it not been for Black Caviar and Winx racing on the scene this decade, then So You Think would be in the number 1 spot. His first Cox Plate victory was in 2009 - outside of this decade but his second Cox Plate victory was in this current decade. I believe that if So You Think had of stayed in Australia, then he would of been the first horse to win four Cox Plates. So You Think did it all, he won five Group 1s in both hemisphres, no other horse in the history of horse racing has achieved this. He also raced on turf and on dirt. Including Australia, he also raced in England, Ireland, France and Dubai, and whilst he was a 2000m horse, he was also pushed out to 2400m (4th in the Arc) and out to 3200m (3rd in the Melbourne Cup). He was a world class horse and when racing in Europe he raced in one of Europe's strongest middle distance era's in terms of depth with the likes of Workforce, Snow Fairy, St Nichollas Abbey, Nathaniel, Cirrus De Aigles and of course the mighty Frankel all racing in this period. Europe is the domain for middle distance racing (and staying races as well) and So You Think was not out of place. In a way he is still underrated by a lot of racing fans in Australia because they only remember him for his brief 12 start career in that part of the world, but if they take a look at his overall career then they will realise he was one of the horses of the decade in Australian racing.

3. More Joyous
31 Starts: 21-1-2
Group 1 Wins This Decade: 7 (8 overall)
Total Group/Listed Wins: 20
Prizemoney: $4,572,450
Peak Timeform Rating: 128

Comment: This talented mare won 8 Group 1s in her career, seven of them were in this decade. More Joyous won Group 1s from 1400m to 2000m. Included amongst her Group 1s was a gutsy win in the Toorak Handicap at Caulfield where she carried 58kg. She also won a Doncaster mile at Randwick carrying 57.5kg. More Joyous loved the mile. Also, just on More Joyous's win in that 2010 Toorak Handicap - what a great day that was because on the same day at Caulfield Black Caviar won the Schillaci Stakes and So You Think won the Caulfield Stakes. All three horses are in my top 10.

4. Chautauqua:
32 Starts: 13-7-4
Group 1 Wins This Decade: 6 (6 overall)
Total Group/Listed Wins: 12
Prizemoney: $8,821,935
Peak Timeform Rating: 127

Comment: The Grey Flash won 6 Group 1s in his career. His trademark last to first finishes was always a highlight. He became the first and only horse so far to win the Group 1 TJ Smith Stakes three years in a row - an outstanding effort. He also won in Hong Kong as well in the Group 1 Chairman's Sprint Prize in which he rocketed home out wide to win. His racing style was "heart in your mouth" stuff, but when he got going in that final 200m - he could seriously motor home and it was very exciting to watch.

5. Hartnell
58 Starts: 13-14-9
Group 1 Wins This Decade: 4 (4 overall)
Total Group/Listed Wins: 10
Prizemoney: $7,469,499
Peak Timeform Rating: 128

Comment: Hartnell initially started his career in Europe and wasn't quite up to that standard as a younger horse. He was sent to Australia and had a great career down under. He won four Group 1s - at 1400m, 1600m, 2000m and at 2400m. Hartnell really was a versatile horse. He also ran 2nd in a Cox Plate and 3rd in the Melbourne Cup at 3200m. Had Winx not ran in the 2016 Cox Plate then Hartnell would of had this feature race next to his name. In fact, Hartnell ran 2nd to Winx 4 times and 3rd to her once. He was definitely one of the horses of the decade in Australian racing.

6. Dundeel
19 Starts: 10-4-1
Group 1 Wins This Decade: 6 (6 overall)
Total Group/Listed Wins: 7
Prizemoney: $5,396,905
Peak Timeform Rating: 129

Comment: Dundeel only had 19 career starts but he achieved a lot in a short career. As a spring 3 year-old he won the Group 1 Spring Champion Stakes, but he really took off as an autumn 3 year-old by winning three Group 1s and achieved the Randwick Guineas - Rosehill Guineas - Australian Derby treble. As an older horse he won a further two Group 1s, the Underwood Stakes (defeating Atlantic Jewel) at Caulfield and Queen Elizabeth Stakes at Randwick. A good career and in my top 10.

7. Hay List
28 Starts: 15-6-0
Group 1 Wins This Decade: 3 (3 overall)
Total Group/Listed Wins: 7
Prize Money: $2,559,575
Peak Timeform Rating: 132

Comment: Had Black Caviar not been on the racing scene, then Hay List would of had more success. He raced in that strong era of sprinters in Australia. Some may question why he is in my top 10 because he only won three Group 1s. Based on a Timeform rating of 132, he was the second highest rated Australian sprinter of the decade, behind Black Caviar (136), and he ran against Black Caviar six times (all at Group 1 level) and ran 2nd to her four times with the other two results being a 6th and a 10th. Plus his career highlight was winning the 2012 Newmarket Handicap carrying 58.5kg and beat Buffering who ran 2nd carrying 4kg less. The weight Hay List carried in that Newmarket was the highest weight in 20 years - an outstanding effort. In my opinion he deserves his place in the top 10 horses of the decade and from a WA point of view - he is WA's best horse of the decade.

8. Buffering
55 Starts: 20-9-8
Group 1 Wins This Decade: 7 (7 overall)
Total Group/Listed Wins: 13
Prizemoney: $7,300,194
Peak Timeform Rating: 127

Comment: Such a warrior and tough. Buffering won seven Group 1s in his career and raced in the Black Caviar era. Once she retired - his career took off. He also won a Group 1 overseas in Dubai, as an 8 year-old, which was a great moment for Australian racing and being a Queensland horse, I remember the race caller saying as Buffering crossed the line "Life is great on the Sunshine State, and those Queenslanders are celebrating" Yep, they certainly were celebrating and so was everyone else throughout Australia too.

9. Pierro
14 Starts: 11-2-1
Group 1 Wins This Decade: 5 (5 overall)
Total Group/Listed Wins: 11
Prize Money: $4,536,650
Peak Timeform Rating: 128

Comment: Pierro was an outstanding 2 year old and 3 year old. In his 2 year old year he achieved the 2 year-old "Triple Crown" in Australia, which was the Golden Slipper - Sires Produce Stakes - Champagne Stakes treble. His record in Group 1 races was 8 starts for five wins, two seconds and one third and of those eight starts at Group 1 level, four of them were in open age company where he won two plus a 2nd and a 3rd - the latter two were placings in the Cox Plate and the Doncaster Mile. He also raced against another talented 3 year-old in All Too Hard.. We can only imagine what Pierro would of achieved as an older horse had he not been rushed off to stud however his short 14 start career was brilliant.

10. All Too Hard
12 Starts: 7-2-1
Group 1 Wins This Decade: 4 (4 overall)
Total Group/Listed Wins: 7
Prize Money: $2,288,200
Peak Timeform Rating: 129

Comment: There will always be debate about who was the better 3 year-old out of All Too Hard and Pierro. We could have endless conversations about it. But for now, let's talk about All Too Hard and his place in the top 10. He was an outstanding 3 year-old. He won four Group 1s in his career and three of them were in open age company. He also ran 2nd in the Cox Plate...only 0.3 lengths away from the winner Ocean Park and the horse who finished 3rd was Pierro. Also, like Pierro, All Too Hard was retired to stud early in his career and again it's a case of "what might of been" because we can only wonder what he would of achieved had he not been retired so early to stud. One of All Too Hard's biggest career highlights was beating Pierro in the 2012 Caulfield Guineas by half a length - a great come from behind win.


Timeform Ratings Reference: https://www.racingandsports.com/timeform/australia-history
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What about this guy, should he be included?

2016    MRC Memsie Stakes    G1    1400m
2016    MRC Underwood Stakes    G1    1800m
2016    SAJC Goodwood Handicap    G1    1200m
2017    MRC CF Orr Stakes    G1    1400m
2017    MRC Futurity Stakes    G1    1400m
2019    MRC Underwood Stakes    G1    1800m
2015    WATC Lee Steere Stakes    G2    1400m
2015    WATC Northerly Stakes    G3    1400m
2016    MRC Victoria Handicap    G3    1400m
2014    WATC Carbine Club of WA Stakes    L    1400m
2015    BunbRC Bunbury Stakes    L    1400m
2015    PinJC Pinjarra Classic    L    1200m
2015    WATC Birthday Stakes    L    1200m
2015    WATC Cyril Flower Stakes    L    1200m
2015    WATC Summer Scorcher Handicap    L    1000m

And although not winning as many G1s as some STARSPANGLEDBANNER had an outstanding record it some of the best SPRINT races. (should he be included, was he better than say Hay List?)

Stakes or Principal Race Wins
Year Race Name Status Distance
2009 MRC Caulfield Guineas G1 1600m
2010 GB Ascot Golden Jubilee Stakes G1 6F
2010 GB July Cup G1 6F
2010 MRC Oakleigh Plate G1 1100m
2009 MRC HDF McNeil Stakes G3 1200m
2009 MRC Vain Stakes L 1200m

 


 

I couldn't have STARSPANGLEDBANNER 

 

I couldn't have Black Heart Bart in my top 10. I can't have them all

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