Who Are The Best In The West?

The WA Summer Carnival came to a close with the Perth Cup and now that the dust has settled Timeform recaps who are the best in the West.

For anyone who follows WA racing, I'm sure you are well aware of who Bob Peters is, but for those that don't, I'm sure you can recall seeing the famous cerise and white sail home down the outside at either Ascot or Belmont.

Often ridden by the Wizard, William Pike, these horses are all raced by Peters Investments.

Having bred and raced horses for over 40 years, Peters currently boasts five of the six best horses in WA, an incredible feat.

Top billing is fairly obvious, Arcadia Queen is not only the best horse in WA, but on her day she is one of/if not the best we have.

ARCADIA QUEEN Picture: Racing Photos

Rated 121+ by Timeform, she quickly put her lacklustre 2019 Spring behind her, notching up two Group 1 wins, much to the delight of many racing fans.

Back under the care of Team Williams, she lined up six times during the Spring and reaffirmed her place at the pointy end of Australian racing.

She is currently the equal favourite for the All-Star Mile and if able to produce a rating of 121 or higher, Russian Camelot will certainly have his work cut for him on March 13.

With her mares' allowance, Russian Camelot would need to run a figure of 126 to beat her, a figure he is yet to produce to date (ran 124 in the Underwood Stakes).

REGAL POWER Picture: Racing and Sports

Regal Power failed to fire a shot during the Spring, but a career peak rating of 122 (2020 All Star Mile) leaves him a more than worthy sidekick to his stablemate.

Only seen twice last preparation after a lung infection derailed his Spring, Regal Power is reportedly back on track with an Autumn target yet to be decided.

Not nominated for the All-Star Mile, owner Bob Peters didn't want to split the vote between his star pair, though you suspect he will jag a wild-card entry in the race – if the defending champ isn't worthy of a wild-card entry - who is?

Last year he ran second in the Australian Cup, before backing up seven days later to take out the feature.

With Pierata now retired, he is notably Pierro's highest rated son currently racing.

Superstorm finished second behind Regal Power in the ASM last year and is the most talented Class 2 horse in the country.

Rated 119 by Timeform, we didn't see him at his best in the Spring and while there were glimpses, if they had their time over again, I'm sure they would have campaigned him differently.

He was cruelled with wide draws and often found himself in impossible positions with his third placing in the Toorak highlighting the engine is still very much there.

A game sixth in the Golden Eagle prior to a break, he is now rated 104 (OHR), a winnable mark if they want to head to a race like the Doncaster.

TRULY GREAT Picture: Racing and Sports

Rounding out the quartet for Peters is the emerging Truly Great.

While beaten in the Perth Cup, at the weights he destroyed them; on level terms he beats Neufbosc  by ~7L and third placegetter Midnight Blue by ~11.5L.

He returned a new career peak now rated 118, building on his 115+ achieved when winning the Kingston Town Classic.

That is a significantly high number for the Perth Cup, the highest rating achieved since Delicacy in 2016.

Likely to be given a long spell and set for the Spring, a race like the Caulfield Cup is likely to be on their radar.

With a OHR of 112, it assures his place in the field and in the bottom half of the weights.

A winner of eight of his 14 starts, including six of his last eight, he has come a long way in a short period and is clearly trending the right way.

He would have to improve again (as expected) to win the feature, though you'd struggle to find an emerging stayer in Australia (not imported) with a better profile/ratings base.

ELITE STREET  Picture: Perth Racing

Next in line is Group 1 Winterbottom Stakes winner Elite Street.

One of the outsiders in the feature event, Elite Street became the 15th winner priced greater than 25-1 to win a Group 1 sprint in Australia since the turn of the century.

Though after watching the replay you can be forgiven in assuming he was one of the favourites.

Unbeaten last preparation, Elite Street had toyed with his rivals in restricted company, before taking a big step forward in the Winterbottom.

Rated 98+ in the lead up, Elite Street improved to return a Timeform rating of 117.

A figure of 117 is three pounds below the winning average for the last five years, with both Hey Doc and Buffering the equal highest rated winners  on 122.

For Dan Morton, Elite Street is now the third highest rated galloper he has trained, though he has a bit of work to do to catch the 'Scenic boys', Scenic Blast rated 128 and Scenic Shot rated 125.

Only in his second preparation, you'd expect he has more to offer and can build on that 117 figure.

Morton is certainly no stranger at travelling his horses, Elite Street will have to improve again to really mix it with the big boys, but he is very hard to knock and isn't as far off as some would think.

Had he run 117 in our WFA sprints, he theoretically would have dead-heated for third in the Everest, ran 2nd in the Darley Sprint Classic and would have been beaten a length in the Manikato Stakes.

While far from an exact science, it helps to illustrate the level  of performance he produced in the Winterbottom and  what he could achieve if they do bring him across.

INSPIRATIONAL GIRL Picture: Simon Merritt-Western Race Pix

Railway Stakes winner Inspirational Girl completes the top six, rated 115 by Timeform.

In a similar mold to stablemate Galaxy Star who won in 2018, five-year-old Inspiration Girl brought up her ninth win in just 11 starts, continuing her upward spiral.

Galaxy Star won the race as a six-year-old at her thirteenth start, she had tasted defeat three times prior.

Such is the case with the Bob Peters' army, he is often not one to rush them, slowly bringing them along.

This allows them to not only make natural progression, but it also gives them time to master their craft.

Neither Galaxy Star or Inspiration Girl lined up in the 3YO features, they were both allowed to build their record through restricted company.

Team Williams just so often gets it right with their horses, emphasised in their strike rate with last start winners (32%), they continue to place their horses to advantage.

The barrier beat her in the Kingston Town Classic and there is clearly no reason to drop off her.

In the Autumn a race like the Queen Of The Turf at Randwick is well within her reach.

The Waterhouse & Bott trained Con Te Partiro ran that exact figure earlier in the year when beating Funstar.

The average winning figure for the last five years is 115, with only Alizee (118) and Azkadellia (116) bettering that mark during the period.

Racing and Sports

Simon Dinopoulos

Senior Handicapper

Sydney-born Simon Dinopoulos joined Racing and Sports' as a form analyst in 2012.

Under the tutelage of Gary Crispe and Adam Blencowe, Simon has quickly established himself as a respected member of the R&S ratings team, with a key focus on NSW, Western Australia and Singapore.

As a journalist he contributes stories for the R&S website, while also priding himself on being a part of the data management sector. Simon has helped establish and maintain Racing And Sports’ global database – the most comprehensive privately owned racing database in the world.

Simon can be heard on Sky Sports Radio - Racings HQ (Friday/Saturday mornings) giving his selections for the weekend's racing.