What better Christmas present than to sit back and enjoy the top 10 animals on turf for 2018. From Superstar 2-year-olds to another edition of the race that stops the nation, here are our top 10 horses of 2018.
Honorable mentions: Osborne Bulls, Pierata, Nature Strip
10. Best Solution
The countdown starts with the Caulfield Cup winning Godolphin import Best Solution. The Saeed Bin Suroor-trained stayer made it 4 wins on the trot when he outlasted Homesman and The Cliffsofmoher to claim Caulfield’s spring feature before a far from disgraceful effort in the Melbourne Cup, coming from near last to finish in the front third of the field.
9. Trapeze Artist
Turned heads with a dominant first up victory before taking out the race made famous by Chautauqua, the T J Smith in front of the likes of Redzel and In Her Time. The 4-year-old made it back to back wins when he took out the All Aged Stakes 2 weeks later, breaking the 1400m track record at Randwick. While winless in his most recent prep, Trapeze Artist was the eventual runner up in Australia’s richest race, the Everest.
8. Arcadia Queen
There are huge wraps on this 3-year-old with her current career record standing at 6-5-0-1. The filly from WA finished the year with a Group 1 to her name, doing so in style when she took out the Kingston Town Classic by a whopping 4.5 lengths. The ‘Queen’ is fast living up to her name with a huge future in store for the young star.
Emerged as one of the countries best juveniles when she won by 4 lengths on debut, proving the claims when she defeated Sunlight in this year’s edition of the Golden Slipper, an incredible effort from barrier 14. The Hawks-trained filly is 3 from 4 to date with her only defeat coming at the hands of the very talented Sunlight.
6. Santa Ana Lane
3 x Group 1’s capped off an amazing year for the Anthony Freedman trained galloper, the icing on the cake coming with a track record at Randwick when winning the Group 2 Premiere Stakes. The flashy off pacer’s chances of climbing The Everest were hindered by the state of the track however the multiple Group 1 winner bounced back next start when coming from near last to defeat In Her Time and Pierata in the VRC Sprint Classic.
5. Cross Counter
The Melbourne Cup winner has a deserved place in the countdown with the Charlie Appleby trained gelding highlighting a very successful year for Godolphin. Cross Counter had a huge run in the Cup, sitting 20th in the big field before navigating his way through to overcome Marmelo who looked a clear winner at one stage. Cross Counter now has 5 wins from 8 starts to his name.
Started the year in style winning the Group 2 Challenge Stakes second-up, defeating Jungle Edge and Super Too in a swift time of 0:55.72 over the 1000m at Randwick with another track record knocked off. The now 6-year-old gelding also won well in the Concorde stakes before his fairytale continued as he once again led all the way to claim victory in the big dance, The Everest. His career earnings now total a whopping $16,397,000.
Conquered the Gold Coast last summer wining by an aggregate of over 11 lengths in 3 runs, the highlight being her win in the Magic Millions 2YO Classic. The Zoustar filly made it 5 on the trot with victories in the Silver Slipper and Magic Night before falling short in the Golden Slipper. The Tony McEvoy trained superstar was only beaten 3.25 by the older horses in the Manikato before becoming a Group 1 winner when she took out the Coolmore Stud Stakes over the straight-6 at Flemington.
2. The Autumn Sun
A stable-mate to Winx out of the Waller camp, the Autumn Sun has been touted as her successor and staring down the barrel of a future Cox Plate win. Now with 5 wins from 6 starts, The Autumn Sun emerged as a genuine star with a 4.5 length demolition job in the Group 1 Caulfield Guineas. At the same time in her career, Winx’s record stood at 6-3-2-0, and had won just $325,225 in prize money. Will the Autumn Sun live up to the hype around one of the greatest ever? Presenting you with the obvious number one, our champion mare.
7 starts for 7 Group 1 wins in 2018, culminating with a 4th consecutive Cox Plate. She’s beaten everything and passed every test. There is no better globally and words cannot describe the career of one of the greatest animals to grace this planet and we are thrilled to have her race on in 2019.