Ghostzapper Ranked as Top Horse in the World

Ghostzapper Ranked as Top Horse in the World
Photo: Skip Dickstein
Breeders' Cup Classic winner Ghostzapper was rated the World's Top Horse.
Edited from IFHA release
The inaugural World Thoroughbred Racehorse Rankings Conference took place in Hong Kong in December 2004. The Conference was held under the auspices of the International Federation of Horseracing Authorities (IFHA), and superseded the International Classifications Conference, which had been held annually since 1977 under the direction of the European Pattern Committee.

The Conference compiled the World Thoroughbred Racehorse Rankings, the end of season assessment of those horses which had raced in or been trained in countries whose racing season ran from Jan. 1 to Dec. 31, 2004, and also the first edition of the IFHA's listing of the World's Leading Horses, which ranks the best horses to have raced anywhere in the world in 2004.

Ghostzapper earned top billing in both publications with his three-length success in the Breeders' Cup Classic - Powered by Dodge (gr. I) at Lone Star Park in October. As well as being the highest-rated horse in the world during 2004 for that performance over 10 furlongs, Ghostzapper, who was unbeaten in 2004, was also rated the joint-top miler, and the highest-rated on dirt, having gained a runaway success in the Philip H. Iselin Breeders' Cup Handicap (gr. III) in August, prior to his win in the Woodward Stakes (gr. I) in September.

The principal global category-toppers of 2004 are as follows:

World's Top Ranked Horse
Ghostzapper (USA) -- Rated 130 -- Trained by Robert J. Frankel in United States

World's Top Ranked 3-Year-Old
Smarty Jones (USA) -- Rated 128 -- Trained by John C. Servis in United States

World's Top Ranked Filly/Mare
Ouija Board (GB) -- Rated 120 -- Trained by Edward Dunlop in Great Britain

World's Top Ranked Sprinters
Silent Witness (AUS) -- Rated 123 -- Trained by Tony Cruz in Hong Kong

Pico Central (BRZ) -- Rated 123 -- Trained by Paulo H Lobo in United States

World's Top Ranked Milers
Ghostzapper (USA) -- Rated 123 -- Trained by Robert J. Frankel in United States

Lonhro (AUS) -- Rated 123 -- Trained by John Hawkes in Australia

Rakti (GB) -- Rated 123 -- Trained by Michael Jarvis in Great Britain

World's Top Ranked Intermediate Distance Performer
Ghostzapper (USA) -- Rated 130 -- Trained by Robert J. Frankel in United States

World's Top Ranked Middle Distance Performer
Doyen (IRE) -- Rated 127 -- Trained by Saeed bin Suroor in Great Britain

World's Top Ranked Stayer
Rule of Law (USA) -- Rated 120 -- Trained by Saeed bin Suroor in Great Britain

The IFHA World Thoroughbred Racehorse Rankings are the official assessment of the top performers. In 1977, France, Great Britain and Ireland published the first internationally agreed assessment of racing merit on behalf of the European Pattern Committee under the banner of the International Classifications. In 1985, Germany and Italy joined the system, to be followed by North America (both Canada and the United States) and Japan in the mid-1990s. The International Classifications continued to expand, with more and more countries becoming involved. During 2003, responsibility for the Classifications was transferred from the European Pattern Committee to the International Federation of Horseracing Authorities, and the initial WTRR Conference, held in Hong Kong in December 2004, was attended by delegates from Argentina, Australia, Hong Kong, Macau, New Zealand, Singapore, South Africa, and the United Arab Emirates, in addition to those from the eight countries who were first involved.

The World Thoroughbred Racehorse Rankings will be published twice each year, and will comprise those horses which have been rated at 115 or above by the WTRR Conferences. The January publication will include horses age 3-years-old and upward which have either raced in, or been trained in, countries whose racing season runs from Jan. 1 to Dec. 31, while the August edition will include those horses which have raced in or been trained in countries who race from Aug. 1 to July 31 (July 1 to June 30 in South America).

The Rankings will also appear on the IFHA Web site (www.horseracingintfed.com), along with tables showing the top 10 horses in individual countries and the winners of group/grade I races, together with their race ratings.

In addition, a list of the top 50 horses will be published five times each year to give updates on the leading performers worldwide. These listings will be produced in January (following the December WTRR Conference), April (following the Dubai World Cup meeting), August (following the July WTRR Conference), October (following the Prix de l'Arc de Triomphe meeting) and November (following the Breeders' Cup meeting). These assessments will also appear on the IFHA Web site. To merit inclusion, a horse must have achieved its rating within the previous six months.

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