Updated on 11/24/2015 10:34AM

Watchmaker Watch: Weekly divisional ratings


Updated: November 23, 2015. Weekly Thoroughbred racing divisional ratings by Mike Watchmaker, national handicapper for Daily Racing Form. Horses must have at least one start in North America.

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Older Dirt Males

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1 – Honor Code,
by A.P. Indy
Met Mile-Whitney double keeps him No. 1
2 – Liam's Map,
by Unbridled's Song
Big talent, but lost his one start vs. Honor Code
3 – Shared Belief,
by Candy Ride
Hoping for a big comeback from him next year
4 – Tonalist,
by Tapit
He still remains a Belmont horse for the course

5- California Chrome,
by Lucky Pulpit
8- Noble Bird,
by Birdstone
6- Constitution,
by Tapit
9- Effinex,
by Mineshaft
7- Lea,
by First Samurai
10- Smooth Roller,
by Hard Spun

Older Dirt Females

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1 – Beholder,
by Henny Hughes
Shame she missed BC; great she'll race in '16
2 – Stopchargingmaria,
by Tale of the Cat
Distaff winner has built herself quite a record
3 – Sheer Drama,
by Burning Roma
Was compromised by her bad post in Distaff
4 – Wedding Toast,
by Street Sense
Couldn't overcome adverse pace setup in BC

5- Got Lucky,
by A.P. Indy
8- Molly Morgan,
by Ghostzapper
6- Untapable,
by Tapit
9- Yahilwa,
by Medaglia d'Oro
7- Frivolous,
by Empire Maker
10- Warren's Veneda,
by Affirmative

3-Year-Old Males             

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1 – American Pharoah,
by Pioneerof the Nile
A true great, and I do not use that term lightly
2 – Keen Ice,
by Curlin
The only one to have beaten Pharoah this year
3 – Frosted,
by Tapit
He'll win plenty of races away from Pharoah
4 – Dortmund,
by Big Brown
Terrific return; poised to have a big 4yo season

5- Texas Red,
by Afleet Alex
8- Upstart,
by Flatter
6- Firing Line,
by Line of David
9- Runhappy,
by Super Saver
7- Materiality,
by Afleet Alex
10- Carpe Diem,
by Giant's Causeway

3-Year-Old Females

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1 – Found,
by Galileo
No one here beat the likes of Golden Horn
2 – Stellar Wind,
by Curlin
Close second in Distaff made her a title threat
3 – I'm a Chatterbox,
by Curlin
The BC was a bad time for her to come up flat
4 – Lady Eli,
by Divine Park
Still wonder what might have been for her

5- Curalina,
by Curlin
8- Embellish the Lace,
by Super Saver
6- Lovely Maria,
by Majesticperfection
9- Include Betty,
by Include
7- Cavorting,
by Bernardini
10- Lady Shipman,
by Midshipman

2-Year-Old males

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1 – Nyquist,
by Uncle Mo
Undefeated Juvenile winner is clear leader here
2 – Swipe,
by Birdstone
Finished second to top one four straight times
3 – Brody's Cause,
by Giant's Causeway
Still think he'll be a force with more experience
4 – Hit It a Bomb,
by War Front
Produced a wild kick to win the Juvenile Turf

5- Exaggerator,
by Curlin
8- Matt King Coal,
by Cool Coal Man
6- Greenpointcrusader,
by Bernardini
9- Mohaymen,
by Tapit
7- Mor Spirit,
by Eskendereya
10- Annual Report,
by Harlan's Holiday

2 Year-Old Females

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1 – Songbird,
by Medaglia d'Oro
Dominated again in the BC; is tops here by a lot
2 – Rachel's Valentina,
by Bernardini
No match for the top one in the Juvenile Fillies
3 – Catch a Glimpse,
by City Zip
Juvenile Fillies Turf winner is perfect on grass
4 – Gomo,
by Uncle Mo
Her Alcibiades victory was slow, but decisive

5- Dothraki Queen,
by Pure Prize
8- Carina Mia,
by Malibu Moon
6- Nickname,
by Scat Daddy
9- Ami's Mesa (new),
by Sky Mesa
7- Stageplay,
by Curlin
10- Pretty N Cool,
by Scat Daddy

Turf Males

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1 – Flintshire,
by Dansili
His Sword Dancer still best race of year for these
2 – Golden Horn,
by Cape Cross
Beat top one in Arc, but was upset in the Turf
3 – Big Blue Kitten,
by Kitten's Joy
Very arguably the best U.S.-based male turfer
4 – The Pizza Man,
by Englsih Channel
Arlington Million winner had a solid campaign

5- Slumber,
by Cacique
8- Grand Arch,
by Arch
6- Main Sequence,
by Aldebaran
9- Twilight Eclipse,
by Purim
7- Ironicus,
by Distorted Humor
10- Mongolian Saturday,
by Any Given Saturday

Turf Females

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1 – Found,
by Galileo
Males she beat in the Turf were a tough group
2 – Tepin,
by Bernstein
Trounced males in the Mile; she's title worthy
3 – Stephanie's Kitten,
by Kitten's Joy
Major player in a suddenly very deep division
4 – Legatissimo,
by Dancehill Dancer
Bad start in the F&M Turf couldn't have helped

5- Hard Not to Like,
by Hard Spun
8- Filimbi,
by Mizzen Mast
6- Secret Gesture,
by Galileo
9- Dacita,
by Scat Daddy
7- Ball Dancing,
by Exchange Rate
10- Curvy,
by Galileo


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1 – Runhappy,
by Super Saver
Trainer fired day after he wins Sprint; raw deal
2 – Private Zone,
by Macho Uno
Second in Sptint was his usual gutsy effort
3 – Rock Fall,
by Speightstown
Had big talent and heart; his loss really hurts
4 – Wild Dude,
by Wildcat Heir
Couldn't make dent in BC; still had a good year

5- Favorite Tale,
by Tale of the Cat
8- Appealing Tale,
by Tale of the Cat
6- The Big Beast,
by Yes It's True
9- Secret Circle,
by Eddington
7- Masochistic,
by Sought After
10- Wavell Avenue,
by Harlington


Joel Firsching 12 hours ago
Dortmund is added to baffert list of quarter crack problems. Others include midnight lute, congaree, sarava, point given, river keen, classic cat, bayern, roman ruler, tiz the truth, jaycito, fiftyshadesofhay, executiveprivilege,. Why does he have so many stakes horses with this problem ? Traveling is a bad idea. Dortmunds daddy and grandpa had cracks. Predicted this problem in the spring.
Jim Chait 15 hours ago
Flintshire above Golden Horn is comical.
Jim Chait 15 hours ago
Honor Code above Liam's Map? I know he beat him a nose in Liam's first foray into stakes company, but Liam's Map should have been in the Classic, he might have won.
Chad mc rory 1 days ago
Lord, do I miss Wise Dan... How bout swinging by his barn and giving us a report on his retraining?
John Murray 8 days ago
Surely Runhappy rates higher in the 3 yo male division, after his BC record performance, or am I missing something here?
Jack Armstead 9 days ago
Mike... can you update the Past Performances to include the Breeders Cup Races? We all want to "Save as" many of the horses talked about. RunHappy, American Pharaoh, et al... all have fans... please?
Beverly Bonneau 15 days ago
Don't know why Flintshire is before Golden Horn. Do you KNOW what Golden Horn has won all year? Compared to what Flintshire won? I don't think so. I assume this list is just YOUR opinions. I do like how you listed others.
Blaine MacMillan 13 days ago
In their respective American races, Flintshire over Golden Horn, EASILY!!!!!
Richard Cadena 16 days ago
Why isn't Lady Eli listed in the Turf Division; she is a turf specialist. A couple at DRF are waging their own campaign to give Lady Eli the three-year-old female Eclipse. Lady Eli was a very good horse; she was beset with the life-threatening laminitis and fortunately appears to have overcome it. She ran three times, winning one Grade I, against weak competitors on the grass. The reasons being floated are that she was the most "talented". The same thing could be said for Shared Belief, who won one Grade I and a Grade II, against stiffer competitors. Most would agree he is the most "talented" older horse in the country. The weakness of the older horse division could be seen when all the East Coast based older runners were left in the dust by the three-year-old, American Pharoah. Honor Code is a good horse but he barely beat the miler, Liam's Map; the other East Coast based older horses, like Tonalist, played musical chairs beating one another. If they reward Lady Eli they should at least be consistent and reward Shared Belief.
Joel Firsching 21 days ago
Golden horn is the best horse in the world and gets ranked behind flintshire. Flintshire has one victory this year and lost to golden horn in the arc. How great european horses ran on the lead ? He started out a closer like secretariat did. Became frontrunning closer. Did golden horn lose to found in the turf ? Or did found only win because she used a performancing drug ? American racing rewards performance enhancing drug use. Then the media doesnt recognize who the best horse really was. The future of horse racing depends on breeding to clean horses. Golden horn ran against much better competiton than american pharaoh did. Dirt racing injuries are wiping many of its top stars. Which means the competition is much weaker than turf racing. Where were calfornia chrome, bayern, palice malice, toast of new york, firing line, dortmund, beholder and shared belief. ?? Turf racing's quality is much better than dirt racing. Move over
Jack Armstead 9 days ago
Joel... you are absolutely correct. Found was getting weight (7 pounds @ 119) for running as a 3 year old, and; first time Lasix. There is no doubt that Golden Horn is still the champ.
Bradford Solomon 22 days ago
update the pps please