Racing Victoria Chief Handicapper Greg Carpenter has revealed that the international handicap rating of leading Australian sprinter Buffering is unlikely to rise, despite the six-year-old finishing his preparation with three straight Group 1 victories.
Buffering stamped himself as the leading sprinter in Australia by winning the Group 1 Manikato Stakes (1200m) and VRC Sprint Classic (1200m) during the 2013 Spring Racing Carnival and completed an historic treble by winning the Group 1 Winterbottom Stakes (1200m) at Perth on Saturday.
Buffering defeated champion Hong Kong sprinter Lucky Nine to win both the Manikato Stakes and VRC Sprint Classic and Lucky Nine was given a rating of 120, when the World’s Best Racehorse Rankings were released earlier in October, but Carpenter told Racing Ahead that Buffering’s rating will not reach that level.
“It is interesting because we have said before that if a horse keeps winning at Group 1 level his rating won’t necessarily go up because of that,” Carpenter said.
“He obviously had a narrow margin over Moment Of Change on Saturday.
“Spirit Of Boom has been such a consistent horse for us at sprint level, running to about 113, and he finished a length and a half behind Buffering and we can call that five to get Buffering to 118.
“Buffering has always been about 117 and in winning the VRC Sprint Classic we were hoping to be able to get him to 118.
“Off the bare maths in this race through Spirit Of Boom you can do it but you have to understand that Spirit Of Boom got that check and some people would think that he would have finished closer to the winner had he not suffered that level of interference.
“Even though Buffering has been at the right place and won these Group 1 contests he is still running to numbers around the 117 and 118.
“I keep telling people that just because a horse keeps winning Group 1’s it doesn’t necessarily flow that their international rating goes up as a consequence.”
Carpenter will meet with a number of other handicappers from around the world at the International Handicappers Conference in Hong Kong next week, in the lead-up to the Hong Kong International Race Day, and they will decide who finishes the year as the highest rated horse in the field.
Australian equine superstar Black Caviar and Prix De L’arc De Triomphe winning filly Treve both currently share the number one ranking and Carpenter said that the conference will spend a great deal of time analyzing their runs this year and well as the performances of other world class horses from right around the globe.
“We will be having a very lengthy review of both Black Caviar and Treve,” Carpenter said.
“For the last half of the year, since the Arc was run, we have had both Black Caviar and Treve as the highest rated horses in the world.
“There have been no performances which have challenged those horses in the past four to six weeks so we will go through Black Caviar’s three wins and Treve’s starts this year and access how the form of those races have played out and whether or not we believe that the 130 for both those fillies and mares are supported.
“That will determine who will be the highest rated horse in the world in 2013.”
The results of the International Handicappers Conference will be released in a press conference in London at the start of 2014; with Black Caviar, All Too Hard, Atlantic Jewel, Pierro, It’s A Dundeel and Fiorente all a chance to finish in the top fifty of the year end rankings.