Beginning Jan. 1, BloodHorse will update its style for reporting group and graded stakes to conform with the International Cataloguing Standards that determine how black-type stakes are referenced in the catalogs for major international auctions.
BloodHorse has long used the country code with the grade/group status; for instance, "(Ire-I)" for a group I stakes in Ireland. U.S. graded stakes were marked as "gr. I, II, or III." BloodHorse will change this style to be consistent with the nomenclature used by the International Cataloguing Standards (ICS), which is to identify only the graded/group status without a country code. BloodHorse will now use: G1, G2, G3 in identifying the graded or group status of a race.
The style change applies to North American and foreign racing, provided the race was run in an ICS Part I country or the race is identified as a Part I race. The distinction between Part I and Part II in the eyes of the ICS is the main driver behind the BloodHorse style change. Races in Part I countries are officially recognized as graded/group stakes worldwide. In Part II countries, graded/group status is largely considered "informational only," meaning the race is recognized as a black-type stakes but not as a graded/group black-type stakes in a catalog. So Singapore could run a race and call it a G1, but the race would be identified as an ungraded black-type stakes on a catalog page.
To distinguish between Part I and Part II races, ICS uses the country code only with races in Part II countries. For example, the Calcutta Derby would be—Calcutta Derby (Ind-G1).
The vast majority of the foreign racing we cover is in Part I countries: Australia, Argentina, Brazil, Canada, Chile, France, Germany, Great Britain, Ireland, Italy, Hong Kong, Japan, New Zealand, Peru, South Africa, and the United Arab Emirates.
Part II countries/jurisdictions include: India, South Korea, Macau, Malaysia, Panama, Puerto Rico, Scandinavia, Singapore, Turkey, Uruguay, Venezuela, and Zimbabwe.
There are a few races in Part II countries that get special Part I designation. Turkey is the best example. This year, Turkey offered three group stakes that were officially recognized: Bosphorus Cup (G2), Istanbul Trophy (G3), and Topkapi Trophy (G2).
Examples of the new graded/group designations
Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum! Brands (G1)
Rebel Stakes (G2)
Tom Fool Handicap (G3)
For North American turf races, BloodHorse will use G1T, G2T, and G3T as follows:
Woodford Reserve Turf Classic (G1T)
Shakertown Stakes (G2T)
Ricoh Woodbine Mile (G1T)