Under double wraps: Where does Winx sit among great Aussie mares?

WinxGROUP 1 Doncaster Handicap winner Winx has skyrocketed to equal-first position in the Longine’s World’s Best Racehorse rankings and currently holds the title of world’s best mare.

The six-time group 1-winner had an outstanding autumn carnival, winning both the Group 1 George Ryder Stakes and the Doncaster Mile at The Championships on April 2. Those wins have been respected by the international panel and Winx is now rated at 126, equal with the globe-trotting California Chrome.

The Chris Waller-trained champion has won its last nine starts, dating back to May 16, 2015 when it won the Group 3 Sunshine Coast Guineas with Jimmy Cassidy in the saddle. Fellow Australian runner Chautauqua was also a brilliant winner during The Championships and is rated the fourth best racehorse in the world at 121.

“Winx and Chautauqua were brilliant in the Doncaster and the T.J. Smith Stakes and these high ratings now show that The Championships has arrived on the world stage,” said Racing NSW’s Chief Executive, Peter V’landys.

“To have two horse rated among the top four positions on such an elite level list underlines the strength of Sydney racing.”


Australian Turf Club Chief Executive Officer, Darren Pearce, puts the success of The Championships down to horses like Winx and Chautauqua which attract more fans.

“Sydney racing fans and the ATC thank Winx, Chautauqua, their connections and trainers Chris Waller and Hawkes Racing for these outstanding performances during The Championships,” Pearce said.

“We are proud to have been able to provide the stage for these great horses and their jockeys to prove that they are world class. We look forward to continuing to build The Championships as a racing and destination event for Sydney.”

The top five is rounded out with Postponed (United Kingdom) and Duramente from Japan. Three-year-old filly Songbird is currently rated on 120 after remaining unbeaten in a stellar career so far.

The success of Winx to become the world’s highest-rated mare has sparked discussion as to where it stands over the course of modern history. Australasia has seen its fair share of champion mares throughout history, but three spring to mind since 2000 and we’ve taken a look to see how Winx compares.

Sunline, Makybe Diva and Black Caviar are the three champion mares which stand head and shoulders above the rest. Sunline was a three-time Australian Horse of the Year, two-time Cox Plate winner and reached a rating of 129 on the Timeform ratings scale.

The 13-time group one winner had a 52 percent strike rate in group 1 races (25), which is incredible and it also performed well on the world stage. Sunline won the 2000 Hong Kong Mile, which put it on the world map and it also finished third in the Dubai Duty Free behind champions Jim And Tonic and Fairy King Prawn.


Three-time Melbourne Cup winner Makybe Diva is the leading prizemoney holder with AU$14,526,685 and it won seven of the 14 group 1 races it contested. Of those victories included the 2003, 2004 and 2005 Melbourne Cups, which was an effort many racing fans didn’t think was possible.

Makybe Diva also won the 2005 Cox Plate and captured Australian Horse of the Year in 2005 and 2006. It had two starts overseas for two disappointing efforts in Japan and a better showing might have gained it more worldwide praise, but Timeform rated it at 129, which equals that of Sunline.

Black Caviar was an unbeaten sprinter which won all 25 races for former trainer Peter Moody. The three-time Australian Horse of the Year winner went unblemished in a career which included some early injury problems. It was rated top racehorse in the world in 2013 and had an amazing Timeform rating of 136.

Black Caviar also had some international success with a win at Royal Ascot in the Group 1 Diamond Jubilee Stakes. The champion mare fell in to win after jockey Luke Nolen sat up close to the line, but the win put Black Caviar firmly on the map, if it wasn’t there already.

So how does Winx stack up against these three champions and what does it have to do to get close? There is no sign that Winx is slowing down and another Cox Plate tilt is on the horizon this coming Melbourne spring carnival.

If Winx can win its second Cox Plate – equalling Sunline, then it will stake its claim as one of Australasia’s best thoroughbreds ever. Its connections have publicly stated their intentions to stay in Australia, seeing as the prizemoney is world class, but we want to see what Winx has against the world’s best middle distance horses.

If and when Winx defeats the best the world has to offer, it can join the likes of Sunline, Makybe Diva and Black Caviar, but until then, we should just enjoy Winx for what it is – the world’s best mare of 2016.

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