Japan’s Equinox is named world’s best race horse of 2023

Japan’s Equinox is named world’s best race horse of 2023


Japan Racing Association

Japan-bred Equinox was named the world’s best race horse by Longines and the International Federation of Horseracing Authorities at a ceremony in London on Tuesday.

Equinox had a rating of 135, the highest mark a Japanese horse has received under the current system, besting the 134 that El Condor Pasa earned in 1999. It is the second time a horse from Japan has won the world’s best racehorse title, following Just A Way in 2014.

The only U.S. horses in the top 10 were Cody’s Wish and White Abarrio, who tied for 10th with three other horses.

Equinox earned his rating in the Grade 1 Japan Cup, which he took by four lengths over Liberty Island, who won the Japanese Triple Crown for fillies earlier in the season. Equinox was undefeated in 2023, with his other victories coming in the Dubai Sheema Classic (G1), Takarazuka Kinen (G1), and Tenno Sho (Autumn, G1). The Japan Cup was the final race of his storied career. Tetsuya Kimura trained Equinox for Silk Racing, and he was ridden to victory by Christophe Lemaire.

Also, the Japan Cup was honored as the world’s best horse race, with a rating of 126.75.

The world’s best horse race award recognizes the best-rated race of the highest-rated Group/Grade 1 international races as established by a panel of international handicappers. The ratings of the top four finishers in each race serve as basis for the assessment. This is the first time the Japan Cup has won the award.

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