Racing Victoria Chief Handicapper Greg Carpenter, Australia’s representative on the World Thoroughbred Rankings Panel, has confirmed that Japanese sprinter Lord Kanaloa’s international rating figure will rise significantly after his dominant victory in the Group 1 Hong Kong Sprint(1200m) at Sha Tin last Sunday.
Lord Kanaloa went into the Hong Kong Sprint with a rating of 120, behind the lines of Lethal Force and All Too Hard, but stamped himself as the best sprinter in the world with a most impressive five lengths romp over the quality field.
Carpenter told Racing Ahead this morning that he has previously argued that Lord Kanaloa’s rating was far too low and was delighted that the King Hamehameha was able to prove his quality with a performance that he rates as the best in a sprint race, outside of equine superstar Black Caviar, in the past ten years.
“Lord Kanaloa was one horse that I had mentioned, for the last 12 months, that I felt didn’t have a rating which reflected his true ability and it was great to see him win in such devastating fashion on Sunday,” Carpenter said.
“In my view, if you set aside Black Caviar, this was the best springing performance in the last decade by any sprinter.
“If you look at the statistics for sprinters around the world in the last ten years; Black Caviar was a 132 in 2011 and in 2012 and 2013 was 130.
“Beyond her you go to Hay List and Rocket Man at 125 and right back to Oasis Dream in 2002 at 124.
“With a five lengths margin, all be it on quick ground, Hong Kong Handicapper Nigel Gray believes he ran to at least 127 and I thought that he deserved a 128.
“You could make an argument around that mark and that is probably where he will end up when the final ratings are released in January.
“His performance on the track was enormously impressive and even though they weren’t the best sprinters in the world behind him, he made them look second rate.”
Carpenter attended the International Handicappers Conference in the lead-up to the Hong Kong International Raceday last week and said that he was happy with the progress made.
Northern Hemisphere horses have generally dominated the world rankings but Carpenter believes that horses based in Australia and Asia are now starting to receive the recognition that they deserve; although he continues to argue that Japanese horses like Lord Kanaloa have been underrated.
“We certainly talked about different levels in different jurisdictions,” Carpenter said.
“I have been very strong in the last year or two that I believe the Japanese ratings are probably on the conservative side and that needs to be addressed.
“It is something that should be driven by the international board because it is not always the role of the local handicapper to trumpet and push the ratings of their own horses.
“The Japanese are quiet conservative about their own levels.”
The 2013 World’s Best Racehorse Rankings will be released on January 16 next year and Black Caviar and champion filly Treve will hold on to their spot on the top of the rankings.