Updated on 09/28/2016 11:10AM

Watchmaker Watch: Weekly divisional ratings


Updated: September 26, 2016. Weekly Thoroughbred racing divisional ratings by Mike Watchmaker, national handicapper for Daily Racing Form. Horses must have at least one start in North America.

Full Leaderboard:

Horses | Trainers | Jockeys | Stallions | Best Beyers

Older Dirt Males

view PPs »

1 – California Chrome,
by Lucky Pulpit
His Pacific Classic performance was monstrous
2 – Frosted,
by Tapit
Overconfidently ridden in slim Woodward loss
3 – Melatonin,
by Kodiak Kowboy
Missed the Pacific Classic due to minor illness
4 – Effinex,
by Mineshaft
Spotty form, but has won two Gr. 2s this year

5- Dortmund,
by Big Brown
8- Shaman Ghost,
by Ghostzapper
6- Mshawish,
by Medaglia d'Oro
9- Mubtaahij,
by Dubawi
7- Hoppertunity,
by Any Given Saturday
10- Stanford,
by Malibu Moon

Older Dirt Females

view PPs »

1 – Beholder,
by Henny Hughes
Lost nothing in stature in second to Cal. Chrome
2 – Stellar Wind,
by Curlin
Was simply better than the top one in Hirsch
3 – Cavorting,
by Bernardini
Continued her roll with Personal Ensign win
4 – Curalina,
by Curlin
She's good, and she fires almost every time

5- Forever Unbridled,
by Unbridled's Song
8- Taris,
by Flatter
6- I'm a Chatterbox,
by Munnings
9- Tara's Tango,
by Unbridled's Song
7- Sheer Drama,
by Burning Roma
10- Haveyougonaway,
by Congrats

3-Year-Old Males 

view PPs »

1 – Nyquist,
by Uncle Mo
Clings to this spot due to honest Ky. Derby win
2 – Arrogate (3),
by Unbridled's Song
Explosive Travers winner has a real shot at title
3 – Exaggerator (2),
by Curlin
I feel all of his wins have wet-track asterisks
4 – American Freedom,
by Pulpit
Did beat everyone but Arrogate in the Travers

5- Creator,
by Tapit
8- Cupid (7),
by Tapit
6- Gun Runner,
by Candy Ride
9- Destin (8),
by Giant's Causeway
7- Connect (new),
by Curlin
10- Mor Spriti (10),
by Eskendereya

3-Year-Old Females

view PPs »

1 – Songbird,
by Medaglia d'Oro
On to the BC Distaff for this brilliant performer
2 – Carina Mia,
by Malibu Moon
Could have been a champ in many other years
3 – Cathryn Sophia,
by Street Boss
Absolutely no match for Songbird, but who is?
4 – Off The Tracks,
by Curlin
Flat in the Prioress and might be tailing off

5- Go Maggie Go,
by Ghostzapper
8- Lucy N Ethel,
by During
6- Catch a Glimpse,
by City Zip
9- Lewis Bay,
by Bernardini
7- Land Over Sea,
by Bellamy Road
10- Paola Queen,
by Flatter

2-Year-Old Males 

view PPs »

1 – Not This Time,
by Giant's Causeway
Impressive winning Iroquois, powerful finisher
2 – Klimt,
by Quality Road
Dmr Futurity romp makes him a major player
3 – Straight Fire,
by Dominus
Ran well even if soundly beaten second to Klimt
4 – Syndergaard,
by Majesticperfection
Seriously talented, will try open company next

5- Practical Joke,
by Into Mischief
8- Favorable Outcome,
by Flatter
6- Three Rules,
by Gone Astray
9- Gunnevara,
by Dialed In
7- Classic Empire,
by Pioneerof the Nile
10- Cairo Healer,
by Giant's Causeway

2-Year-Old Females

view PPs »

1 – Union Strike,
by Union Rags
Decisive Dmr Debutante win lands her on top
2 – Pretty City Dancer,
by Tapit
Greenness in Spinaway dh cost her the solo win
3 – Sweet Loretta,
by Tapit
Co-Spinaway win capped a big Spa meet for her
4 – American Cleopatra,
by Pioneerof the Nile
American Pharoah's sister can indeed run a bit

5- Champagne Room,
by Broken Vow
8- American Gal,
by Concord Point
6- Nonna Mela,
by Arch
9- Noted and Quoted,
by The Factor
7- Cherry Lodge,
by Bernardini
10- Coasted,
by Tizway

Turf Males

view PPs »

1 – Flintshire,
by Dansili
He is still the best here by a substantial margin 
2 – Ironicus,
by Distorted Humor
Fine second to top one but has had a foot issue
3 – Mondialiste,
by Galileo
Question how strong his Arl. Million really was
4 – Obviously,
by Choisir
His fine Poker win says he remains a solid miler

5- Divisidero,
by Kitten's Joy
8- Money Multiplier,
by Lookin at Lucky
6- Midnight Storm,
by Pioneerof the Nile
9- Da Big Hoss,
by Lemon Drop Kid
7- Tourist,
by Tiznow
10- Wake Forest,
by Sir Percy

Turf Females

view PPs »

1 – Tepin,
by Bernstein
So good, she wins with less than her "A" race
2 – Sea Calisi,
by Youmzain
Might be the best here going longer distances
3 – Dacita,
by Scat Daddy
Just missed at WO on off turf she doesn't favor
4 – Miss Temple City,
by Temple City
She's better than her Saratoga races may suggest

5- Lady Eli,
by Divine Park
8- Sentiero Italia,
by Medaglia d'Oro
6- Celestine,
by Scat Daddy
9- Catch a Glimpse
by City Zip
7- Rainha de Bateria,
by Broken Vow
10- Time and Motion
by Tapit


view PPs »

1 – Lord Nelson,
by Pulpit
Still California's most accomplished sprinter
2 – Masochistic,
by Sought After
For a workout, his Pat O'Brien was really fast
3 – A.P. Indian,
by Indian Charlie
Winning 2 Gr. 1 sprints at Saratoga is big stuff
4 – X Y Jet,
by Kantharos
Brutal beat in Dubai, chipped a knee too

5- Drefong (8),
by Gio Ponti
8- Private Zone (7),
by Macho Uno
6- Kobe's Back (5),
by Flatter
9- Wild Dude,
by Wildcat Heir
7- Marking (6),
by Bernardini
10- Subtle Indian,
by Indian Charlie


alex 3 days ago
What a tremendous Saturday this promises to be with grade 1 BC preps from coast to coast!  Cal Chrome, Beholder, Flintshire, Run Happy, Lady Eli I could go on and on all these great races will bring this year's breeders cup into full focus  you gotta love this time of the year. ....
Thomas 3 days ago
Why aren't the 3 yo male rankings Nyquist, Exaggerator, Creator, then Arrogate?  Are the rankings what you might do in the future or what you've done this year?  Creator won the Arkansas Derby and Belmont THIS YEAR, yet he's below Arrogate, a horse who won the 4th best 3yo race this year and nothing else.  Wow does Watchmaker love Arrogate, maybe next he can explain why Joel Rosario wasn't indicted or suspended for fixing the Woodward?  Not trying your best to win a race and blatantly costing the betting public thousands of dollars by not trying your best is equal to race fixing and cheating. 
Andrew Young 1 days ago
I think most people would rank the Travers as the 2nd most important race among 3 yo's. Everyone points their horse to the derby , the Preakness usually consist of the top 2 or 3 from derby and some 2nd level 3yo who couldn't make the derby. The Belmont is at an odd distance that our horses aren't bred for. Creator took advantage of a very fast pace that fell apart in the ARK. Derby. his Belmont was very good. Exaggerator has taken advantage of wet tracks and wicked pace duels in his wins. Arrogate won the IMO the 2nd most important race with the   performance of the year. while lightly raced I think that warrants his placement as the 2nd best 3YO. and going forward IMO he is the only 3YO who has a shot against CC in the classic. AS for Rosario the  trainer has said that Frosted doesn't respond well the the whip, after the slow start you could make the case that Rosario made mistakes and rode his horse with to much confidence but i'm not willing to say it was fixed. The fraud committed against the gambling public was the Sword Dancer when Irad gave up his position for Flintshire and Gryder did his best to impede every horse he could to give Castellano a Red Sea type opening on the rail.
RaceTote 4 days ago
Nyquist confirmed, Saturday, that he isn't the same animal that went undefeated through eight races, including the Kentucky Derby. What's missing? Something changed, what is it? Can Doug O'NEILL make it right? We want the old Nyquist. 
ProXstream Gaming 16 days ago
My man "Big Blue Kitten".........since his non threatening 6th in the Manhattan,  Chad Brown has worked him TEN TIMES, all at 4f on the dirt, all in 49 and change.  No races, nothing scheduled that I'm aware of.  What gives Chad ?  
ProXstream Gaming 17 days ago
October 1st races will answer alot of questions, or solidify current opinions. Can't wait. 
Richard Cadena 19 days ago
Frosted may have lost by a slim margin, but those others were not that strong a bunch. There is a wide gap between California Chrome and all the rest, including Frosted. Chrome's dominating victories may not have been by 20 lengths but he has beaten way tougher horses than Frosted or anyone else has, Due to Frosted loss; he was already trounced by Chrome, Chrome has wrapped up divisional honors. Most likely he will be Horse of the Year, even if he sits out the Breeder's Cup Classic. No other horse will have compiled the same record, for the full year. Songbird may be up there, is she beats Beholder in the Distaff. A few at the DRF seem to be quick to elevate their next chosen one based on a horse that wins one race, even though at a mile, by 20 lengths; it gets worse if Beyer puts a high figure. They did it with Frosted, Arrogate, and in the past a few others. One DRF pundit's sense of racing history seems to be based on anything known since birth, plus a list of Beyers.
Erik Nelson 21 days ago
As a fan of Union Rags who thought that if John Velasquez had been given the mount on him earlier instead of Julien Leparoux when Castellano was injured he would have run better in both the Florida and Kentucky.Derby (not saying he would have beat I'll Have Another just that traffic trouble might have been avoided with a more aggressive ride early on), I was thrilled to watch Union Strike win the Del Mar Debutante as a maiden. His first starter and winner, Lady Stardust who won her maiden impressively with an 84 BSF  unfortunately flipped in the starting gate of the Tremont Stakes against colts and had to be scratched I see has been recording regular workouts and hopefully she will race again soon.  Also does anyone know anything about the Union Rags $975,000 colt Dre Dan that Baffert purchased for someone and was working regularly for a while at Los Alamitos and Del Mar? Equibase  doesn't have the trainer of record listed and there are no notes on whether or not they plan to enter this colt  in any races soon. Union Rags has 5 winners to date - 4 of which I believe are fillies. 
RaceTote 22 days ago
Another thing about Syndergaard: he's already proven he can win come rain or come shine. 1:09.36 through three quarters,at Saratoga, in standing water- that's flying. 
RaceTote 22 days ago
Looks like Todd Pletcher has himself a true front runner- a speed horse. Great pace by Syndergaard. If the young colt can just carry that speed beyond two turns, then he's really got something. 
vincentnovella1 21 days ago
we may find out if he ships to gulfstream for the 3yo stakes next year. looks fine going 1 turn in race like champaign.
RaceTote 22 days ago
 I still see Classic Empire as a promising youngster amongst two year old colts. He may have lost his rider, but unquestionably deserves a line drawn through the one loss. If you wish to call it that. So far as I'm concerned, he'd still undefeated. 
vincentnovella1 21 days ago
it was a real shame how he spun around like that leaving the gate.