Top Ten Europe (flat racing)
The Top Ten Europe (flat racing) was selected from those horses that raced in the modern era of flat horse racing which I have taken to align with the running of the first Melbourne Cup in 1861.
34 finalists were short listed from over 160 horses who I selected based on the following factors: their overall record (win and place %), the number of group 1 races won (including races that were given group 1 status later) with weighting towards those who won group 1 races against older horses.
I don't know a lot about European racing so this was the hardest of the top ten's to date.
The Top Ten Europe (flat racing) in foal year order a
Gladiateur (FR) 1862
19 starts: 16 wins (6 x G1 later; 4 in UK, 2 in FR), 0 seconds, 1 thirds. Win % 84.2, Place % 89.5
Gave the English a hiding in England winning the English 3YO triple crown in 1865 and the Ascot Gold Cup the following year. Known as the 'Avenger of Waterloo' the French were so grateful they cast a statue in his honour which is at Longchamp. He retired undisputed world earnings leader in USD earning USD 235,822.
Kincsem (HUN) 1874 (mare)
55 starts: 54 wins + 1DH (won run-off) (3 x G1 later), 0 seconds, 0 thirds. Win % 100.0, Place % 100.0.
Beat the French and the English on their soil a feat which hadn't been achieved by an outsider since Julius Caesar proclaimed "veni vidi vici".
Pretty Polly (IRE) 1901 (mare)
24 starts: 22 wins (8 x G1 later), 2 seconds, 0 thirds, Win % 91.7, Place % 100.0
Champion filly who won the English Fillies Triple Crown and won in open company as 4 and 5 year old winning 8 races later classified as group 1 races.
Bayardo (GB) 1906
25 starts: 22 wins (6 x G1 later), 1 seconds, 0 thirds, Win % 88.0, Place % 92.0
He won 6 races later classified group 1 in England and won at least one in every year from age 2 to age 4. Beaten by a neck in his last race due to a lamentable performance by his jockey.
Ksar (FR) 1918
15 starts: 11 wins (1 x dead heat, 8 x G1 later), 3 seconds, 0 thirds, Win % 73.3, Place % 93.3.
He won 8 races in France later classified as group 1 from age 2 to age 4 including the Arc twice. His wikipedia page states he won Prix du President de la Republique 1922 whereas I believe he ran second beaten a head. His worst finish was fourth in 1921 Grand Prix de Paris.
Ribot (GB) 1952
16 starts: 16 wins (5 x G1 later), 0 seconds, 0 thirds. Win % 100.0, Place % 100.0.
Won two Arcs and the King George VI and Queen Elizabeth Stakes. Better than Frankel so the best horse ever.
Brigadier Gerard (GB) 1968
18 starts, 17 wins (7 x G1 later), 1 second, 0 thirds. Win % 94.4, Place % 100.0.
Beat Mill Reef in their only meeting in the 2000 Guineas. Only defeat occurred in the Benson and Hedges Gold Cup over 10.5f by Roberto (3 lengths, both broke the course record) and some thought Roberto may have run above himself that day. Roberto was well beaten at his next start in France.
Allez France (USA) 1970 (mare)
21 starts, 13 wins (8 x G1), 3 seconds, 1 third. Win % 61.9, Place % 81.0.
She raced from age 2 to age 5 winning a group 1 race at each age. Four group 1 wins were in open company including the 1974 Arc. Met Dahlia four times and finished in front of her each time.
Goldikova (IRE) 2005 (mare)
27 starts: 17 wins (14 x G1), 6 seconds, 3 thirds. Win % 63.0, Place % 96.3.
She was a top class miler who raced at age 2 to age 6. From age 3 she won nine group 1 races in open company in France, England and the USA proving she could win anywhere.
Frankel (GB) 2008
14 starts, 14 wins (10 x G1), 0 seconds, 0 thirds. Win % 100.0, Place % 100.0.
He raced from age 2 to age 4 and was a top class miler who could run 10f. Unbeaten with 7 group 1 wins in open company.
The 24 shortlisted that did not make the final 10 are listed below for information:
St Simon (GB) 1881
Ormonde (GB) 1883
Donovan (GB) 1886
La Fleche (GB) 1889 (mare)
Orme (GB) 1889
Isinglass (GB) 1890
Sansonetto (ITY) 1891
La Camargo (FR) 1898 (mare)
Lemberg (GB) 1907
Oleander (GER) 1924
BrantŰme (FR) 1931
Nearco (ITY) 1935
Djebel (FR) 1937
Tenerani (ITY) 1944
Tantieme (FR) 1947
Petite Etoile (GB) 1956 (mare)
Nijinsky II (CAN) 1967
Mill Reef (USA) 1968
Dahlia (USA) 1970 (mare)
Exceller (USA) 1973
Triptych (USA) 1982 (mare)
Miesque (USA) 1984 (mare)
Rock of Gibraltar (IRE) 1999
Enable (GB) 2014 (mare)
If Enable races well (if at all) in 2020 she will be considered for a place in the top ten.