Welcome to the 2019 Divisional Rankings! Each week for the whole year, we will rank the best thoroughbred horses in America based on their divisions. Let’s take a look at the rankings, including my latest NTRA Top 10 Poll:
Here are my overall rankings as seen in the latest NTRA Top 10 Poll of the season. The poll ranks the top thoroughbred horses based on if Horse of the Year voting was conducted at this very moment. With the year half over, we’ve started to get a good feel for the top horses in the country. Here’s what my latest Top 10 poll looked like:
1. Bricks and Mortar
3. World of Trouble
4. Midnight Bisou
6. Vino Rosso
9. Rushing Fall
10. X Y Jet
1. Bricks and Mortar – He picked up his fourth straight victory in the Manhattan Stakes (G1) at Belmont Park
2. Vino Rosso – His huge Gold Cup at Santa Anita Stakes (G1) victory means that he is a major player in the handicap division.
3. McKinzie – A big effort in the Runhappy Metropolitan Handicap (G1) ended in a second-place finish.
4. City of Light – His Pegasus World Cup (G1) win will end up being one of the best races that we see all year long.
5. Seeking the Soul – A nice win in the Stephen Foster Stakes (G2) has him in the conversation again.
Sleeper: Preservationist – His runaway win in the Suburban Handicap (G2) showed that he could become a player in this division.
1. Midnight Bisou – She is easily the top female after her fourth straight win in the Ogden Phipps Stakes (G1) at Belmont Park.
2. Sistercharlie – The big mare is back in a major way after earning a career-best 105 Beyer in her Diana Stakes (G1) triumph.
3. Elate – The Delaware Handicap (G2) proved that she is back to her top form, giving her two straight powerful victories.
4. Rushing Fall – There is no disgrace in finishing second to her stablemate Sistercharlie in the Diana.
5. Monomoy Girl – We haven’t seen her run this year, and there is no word on when she might return, but she belongs here based on class and talent. On July 14, she finally returned to trainer Brad Cox’s barn.
Sleeper: Mia Mischief – She might be the best female sprinter in the country right now after back-to-back wins at Churchill Downs.
1. War of Will – Somehow, he enters the summer as a very weak leader in the division. His three graded stakes victories tops the rest of this lackluster bunch.
2. Omaha Beach – This division is his for the taking – if he can come back with a strong summer campaign.
3. Maximum Security – His Pegasus Stakes (G3) loss knocked him down a couple of spots, but he could still easily get back to the top of this wide-open division.
4. Mr. Money – Three wins in a row mean a lot in this division, which is what he accomplished when taking home the Indiana Derby (G3).
5. Code of Honor – Finally, a headlining horse showed up with a big effort in this division. His Dwyer Stakes (G3) effort was impressive.
Sleeper: King for a Day – This up-and-comer could make some noise after defeating Maximum Security in the Pegasus Stakes (G3).
1. Serengeti Empress – She ran huge in the Acorn Stakes (G1); however, she had to settle for second. She has the lead in this division going into the summer, but it’s wide open.
2. Guarana – There is no doubt that she could easily end up #1 in this division. Her win in the Acorn Stakes (G1) was breathtaking and made her a perfect 2-for-2.
3. Bellafina – The curse of Kentucky continued for her in the Kentucky Oaks (G1), but she still could take this division over with solid races over the summer. Her connections are planning to cut her back to one-turn distances with an eye on the Breeders’ Cup Filly & Mare Sprint over her home track at the end of the year.
4. Dunbar Road – An ultra-impressive Mother Gooses Stakes (G2) triumph served notice that she will be a player in this division the rest of the season.
5. Point of Honor – Her big-time Black-Eyed Susan Stakes (G2) win puts her in a position to move forward.
Sleeper: Covfefe – She lost to older horses in the Roxelana Overnight Stakes, but she earned much respect in defeat.
1. Mitole – The Met Mile (G1) was the race of the year so far! This could end up being the best horse in the country, regardless of divisions.
2. World of Trouble – The amazing World of Trouble rolled again at Belmont Park in the Jaipur Invitational Stakes (G1).
3. X Y Jet – He finally got his Golden Shaheen (G1) victory in Dubai after coming so close in previous years.
4. Promises Fulfilled – His John A. Nerud Stakes (G2) win earned him an automatic berth in the Breeders’ Cup Sprint (G1).
5. Roy H – A setback in Dubai has forced him to miss some time; however, we know that he can come back with a vengeance when he’s healthy.
Sleeper: Catalina Cruiser – His win in the True North Stakes (G2) at Belmont Park showed that he’s back and ready for a big 2019. It’s uncertain whether he will be a sprinter or distance horse this year.