A Plus Tard Leads the Way as Highest-Rated Chaser of 2021/22

Published 2022/06/03

A Plus Tard Leads the Way as Highest-Rated Chaser of 2021/22

As the National Hunt season takes its well-earned summer break, all eyes will be on the flat campaign and some of the fastest horses on the planet.

Royal Ascot takes on an even greater significance than ever in the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee year, and one of the highest-rated racehorses in the world will be on show to dazzle Her Majesty with his unrivalled power.

Baaeed leads the way in the betting for the Queen Anne Stakes at the festival on June 14, and his odds of 1/3 could shorten even further leading up to the race as punters weigh in with their Ascot bets. The next best in the market, Master Of The Seas at 8/1, really does have his work cut out even getting close to William Haggas’ star.

The trainer has described Baaeed as ‘up there with the best’ he has worked with, and a British Horseracing Authority rating of 125 confirms that only Adayar, the Derby and King George champion, is considered a better horse at 127.

The BHA ratings are a useful source of information for punters, with the organisation’s team of handicapping experts considering the prestige of the races a horse wins – and the quality of opposition they defeat – to assign a numerical value for both flat and National Hunt horses. They have recently published their ratings to mark the end of the 2021/22 jumps racing season, and they make particularly happy reading for those on the Emerald Isle…

A Plus Tard Confirmed As Leading Chaser

If the Cheltenham Gold Cup can be considered the pinnacle of three-mile chasing, then it’s no surprise that the winner is now rated as the finest chase horse in the business.

A Plus Tard memorably took the spoils at the Festival in March with Rachael Blackmore on board – gaining revenge on stablemate Minella Indo after the roles were reversed from the 2021 renewal.

The Cheveley Park Stud star has been assigned a rating of 180 by BHA’s handicappers, and that hands him a handsome 3lb cushion over the next best chaser according to their figures.

That accolade goes to Allaho, who has only lost one of seven starts since the beginning of 2021. A former Ryanair and Punchestown Chase winner, Henry de Bromhead’s horse has stepped up to the three-mile mark with aplomb to land the Punchestown Gold Cup in impressive fashion, and will now surely contest Cheltenham’s showpiece against A Plus Tard next year.

Sharing third place in the chase ratings at 176 are Energumene, the dual Champion Chase winner, and Shishkin, who defeated Energumene in the Clarence House Chase back in January.

As for the hurdlers, the unbeaten Constitution Hill leads the way as a novice with a rating of 170. Nicky Henderson’s five-year-old has already shown immense promise and won the Supreme Novices’ Hurdle at Cheltenham by a whopping 22 lengths – he is likely to be a formidable force in the 2022/23 season.

The ratings from the BHA, or any other outlet like Timeform for that matter, are not ‘perfect’ as an indicator of who will win a race on any given day. But they tend to be an excellent arbiter of comparing horses against one another, and remain a key weapon in the arsenal of punters.