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keithw84
01-31-2018, 09:45 PM
I just read an article comparing Arrogate and Gun Runner, and it got me thinking. What if we looked at the four best horses of the last four years (American, dirt, classic distances):

American Pharoah
Arrogate
California Chrome
Gun Runner

How would you rank them?

PointGiven
01-31-2018, 10:21 PM
I will add my order but did want to say I am sometimes weary of ranking horses that it comes out like I am poo pooing some. That said talent wise I would say

Arrogate
American Pharoah
Gun Runner
California Chrome

Secondbest
01-31-2018, 10:21 PM
I just read an article comparing Arrogate and Gun Runner, and it got me thinking. What if we looked at the four best horses of the last four years (American, dirt, classic distances):

American Pharoah
Arrogate
California Chrome
Gun Runner

How would you rank them?

What distance?

Afleet
01-31-2018, 10:25 PM
1.Gunrunner
2.Arrogate
3.California Chrome
4.American Pharoah

Arrogate would have crushed American Pharoah in the Travers if they both ran in the same year. Gunrunner Crushed Arrogate in the BC, but lost in Dubai to Arrogate. Arrogate beat Ca. Chrome in the BC. Simple

Afleet
01-31-2018, 10:26 PM
What distance?

5 1/2 furlongs:)

thaskalos
01-31-2018, 10:28 PM
Gun Runner
American Pharoah
California Chrome
.
.
.
Arrogate

PointGiven
01-31-2018, 10:28 PM
What distance?


I don't think it would really matter, but maybe a little on GunRunner.

Secondbest
01-31-2018, 10:34 PM
5 1/2 furlongs:)

:lol:

Secondbest
01-31-2018, 10:42 PM
I don't think it would really matter, but maybe a little on GunRunner.
The reason I asked is every horse has his best distance. The Arrogate who won the Travers was the best of them all at 1 1/4 but maybe not at 1 1/8
AP won at 1 1/2.
Since no one will ever know how AP would have progressed or regressed as a 4yr old to compare him to an older Gun Runner is not fair.

classhandicapper
01-31-2018, 11:58 PM
At their best Gun Runner and Arrogate gets decided in the last few strides based on the distance, how the race developed, and how the track was playing.

I like Gun Runner better overall because he has the better long term record and was still getting better.

The best of Arrogate and Gun Runner probably beats American Pharoah in a fairly run race, but imo AP had the most speed and raw talent. We just don't know if he would have continued to develop at 4.

CC is close right behind them.

GMB@BP
02-01-2018, 12:13 AM
The really good Arrogate beat Gun Runner who beats American Pharoah who beat California Chrome.

Lemon Drop Husker
02-01-2018, 01:31 AM
Arrogate is 4-1 against Gun Runner and California Chrome.

Hard to know what AP really was. I think he was great, but not sure he really beat anybody of note.

PaceAdvantage
02-01-2018, 01:36 AM
I just read an article comparing Arrogate and Gun Runner, and it got me thinking. What if we looked at the four best horses of the last four years (American, dirt, classic distances):

American Pharoah
Arrogate
California Chrome
Gun Runner

How would you rank them?

At their best?

Arrogate
Gun Runner
American Pharoah
California Chrome

Lemon Drop Husker
02-01-2018, 01:50 AM
At their best?

Arrogate
Gun Runner
American Pharoah
California Chrome

I like your list, except I'd put Chrome over AP.

Tough company when you rank the 1st Triple Crown winner and BC Classic winner EVER DFL.

Would be a great 4 horse race. Who'd get the lead?

PaceAdvantage
02-01-2018, 01:52 AM
I like your list, except I'd put Chrome over AP.It's a tough call because AP never raced at 4, but I let my lifelong bias against CC decide the last two spots...:lol:

cj
02-01-2018, 11:22 AM
The really good Arrogate beat Gun Runner who beats American Pharoah who beat California Chrome.

I'd argue that wasn't the really good Gun Runner though. He clearly got much better after Dubai.

fiznow
02-01-2018, 11:40 AM
1. American Pharoah
2. Arrogate
3.Gun Runner
4. California Chrome

GMB@BP
02-01-2018, 11:49 AM
I'd argue that wasn't the really good Gun Runner though. He clearly got much better after Dubai.

I agree.

We never saw these to race against each other at their peak, I suppose Dubai would be the closest.

Its splitting hairs really.

cj
02-01-2018, 12:34 PM
I agree.

We never saw these to race against each other at their peak, I suppose Dubai would be the closest.

Its splitting hairs really.

Agree, both were fabulous horses we were lucky to see in such a short span.

Lemon Drop Husker
02-01-2018, 01:05 PM
Agree, both were fabulous horses we were lucky to see in such a short span.

Gun Runner and Arrogate is really a tough call.

I'm more partial to the absolute brilliance flashed by Arrogate over a 4 race stretch of the Travers, BC Classic, Pegasus, and Dubai in which he brought forth memories of the greatest of the greatest from years past. Breaking the track record at Saratoga in which it was half a football field to his nearest contender was unbelievable.

Gun Runner on the other hand put together as strong a resume as one can build over a 2 year stretch nowadays. He is a great grinder that will be remembered well.

At their best: Arrogate
Over a 10 race stretch: Gun Runner

I guess it really comes down to which you prefer.

cj
02-01-2018, 01:08 PM
Gun Runner and Arrogate is really a tough call.

I'm more partial to the absolute brilliance flashed by Arrogate over a 4 race stretch of the Travers, BC Classic, Pegasus, and Dubai in which he brought forth memories of the greatest of the greatest from years past. Breaking the track record at Saratoga in which it was half a football field to his nearest contender was unbelievable.

Gun Runner on the other hand put together as strong a resume as one can build over a 2 year stretch nowadays. He is a great grinder that will be remembered well.

At their best: Arrogate
Over a 10 race stretch: Gun Runner

I guess it really comes down to which you prefer.

I agree. I have Gun Runner a little faster than Arrogate, but he also did that at the end of his four year old and early five year old seasons. Had Arrogate held form maybe he is as fast or faster. But as you mention, that is part of the story. Gun Runner stayed good for a longer stretch.

dilanesp
02-01-2018, 02:20 PM
Chrome had the best career.

Arrogate had the most raw talent.

Pharoah made the biggest impact.

Gun Runner closed out his career the best.

ultracapper
02-02-2018, 12:49 AM
At their best?

Arrogate
Gun Runner
American Pharoah
California Chrome

I like this order, and I have no prejudice towards CC. Other than the KDerby, AP was pretty one dimensional. Maybe because he was heads better than his generation. When you're just faster than the rest, you hit the lead and don't goof off, I get that. The other 3 were/are more flexible. Arrogate was just a plain old monster at his apex. Great race horse, was he.

castaway01
02-02-2018, 10:01 AM
Chrome had the best career.

Arrogate had the most raw talent.

Pharoah made the biggest impact.

Gun Runner closed out his career the best.

I might change "best career" to "longest career" for Chrome, but otherwise this is how I see it too.

GMB@BP
02-02-2018, 10:50 AM
Whats funny is if Shared Belief does not get hurt he may have been better than all these.

Lemon Drop Husker
02-02-2018, 11:10 AM
Whats funny is if Shared Belief does not get hurt he may have been better than all these.

Yep. That was a pretty special horse. Who knows what he could have been. :pout:

burnsy
02-02-2018, 01:42 PM
Arrogate is 4-1 against Gun Runner and California Chrome.

Hard to know what AP really was. I think he was great, but not sure he really beat anybody of note.

That's the problem with retiring healthy at 3. It kind of kills the game. AP could of been anything, but no one will ever see it or find out. He never faced the competition the others did so its hard to say.

I like PA's order (at their best) but i might exchange CC to third and make AP fourth. Just for the fact that after the Triple Crown, AP really only had one hard race. Arrogate was a beast but his form lasted like 4 races. CC had the best longevity of all of them though. I mean its hard to rank todays race horses they just seem to come and go. When you have to say "at their best" you know some of them were short runs.

dilanesp
02-02-2018, 01:45 PM
That's the problem with retiring healthy at 3. It kind of kills the game. AP could of been anything, but no one will ever see it or find out. He never faced the competition the others did so its hard to say.

I like PA's order (at their best) but i might exchange CC to third and make AP fourth. Just for the fact that after the Triple Crown, AP really only had one hard race. Arrogate was a beast but his form lasted like 4 races. CC had the best longevity of all of them though. I mean its hard to rank todays race horses they just seem to come and go. When you have to say "at their best" you know some of them were short runs.

One of my very specific disappointments about AP is that in any rational system, he would have met Chrome and that would have been a good race. Chrome was a star both before and after AP's career.

Of course Zenyatta and Rachel never met either. This is a real cancer on this sport. Imagine if Ali and Frazier fought at the same time and never met, or Federer and Nadal.

Denny
02-02-2018, 02:06 PM
American Pharoah - A Triple Crown + BC Classic puts him in a league of his own
Gun Runner - Got the better of his main rival in the end
Arrogate - Great for four great races
California Chrome - The least of the four

burnsy
02-02-2018, 02:09 PM
One of my very specific disappointments about AP is that in any rational system, he would have met Chrome and that would have been a good race. Chrome was a star both before and after AP's career.

Of course Zenyatta and Rachel never met either. This is a real cancer on this sport. Imagine if Ali and Frazier fought at the same time and never met, or Federer and Nadal.

I posted something similar two BC's ago. All of them in there would of been a real "Classic." (AP, Chrome, Arrogate) AP, if he improved, could of been the best horse for decades.....and it was all left on the table. That's why i would put Chrome ahead, i agree. Its a detriment when horses like that retire and Chrome stuck it out. That's real sportsmanship.

cj
02-02-2018, 04:57 PM
I posted something similar two BC's ago. All of them in there would of been a real "Classic." (AP, Chrome, Arrogate) AP, if he improved, could of been the best horse for decades.....and it was all left on the table. That's why i would put Chrome ahead, i agree. Its a detriment when horses like that retire and Chrome stuck it out. That's real sportsmanship.

One was worth a fortune at stud, the other was not. I wouldn't call that sportsmanship.

reckless
02-02-2018, 05:32 PM
Arrogate
Gun Runner
California Chrome
American Pharoah

Arrogate legitimately ran three of the most remarkable races in the history of the sport. He easily handled Gun Runner early, but also lost by many in their last meeting, of course. Arrogate also ran down the very sharp California Chrome deep in the stretch when CC had an open lead in the BC Classic and later easily trounced him again in the Pegasus.

Can't praise Gun Runner enough. Dominated the handicap division. Love the horse. Ran well in the early 3yo year, improved in the fall and ran even better at four. Never missed a beat nor basically ducked a horse throughout his career.

California Chrome was dominant in his 3 and 4 yo seasons running much faster than some of the public speed figures suggested, imo. I believe he was very underated as a runner but of course, the over the top public love fest for CC left him with very few true die hard fans.

American Pharoah faced a weak bunch of 3-year-olds and after the Derby it seemed to me the rest of the outfits conceded the TC to him. Best of a poor lot.

I'll go to my grave believing Liam's Map would have pissed all over American Pharoah if Todd Pletcher ran him the BC Classic as he should have. Not that anyone cares.

Denny
02-02-2018, 05:37 PM
So why didn't Pletcher run Liam in the Classic?
Why didn't Shug McGaughey run Honor Code?

Because they knew.

Pharaoh would have trounced them both.

Tee
02-02-2018, 07:04 PM
So why didn't Pletcher run Liam in the Classic?
Why didn't Shug McGaughey run Honor Code?

Because they knew.

Pharaoh would have trounced them both.

Honor Code ran 3rd in the 2015 Breeders Cup Classic.

Denny
02-02-2018, 08:16 PM
I thought Honor Code went in the Dirt Mile?

If he did go in the Classic, then AP did trounce him. Makes my point.

I don't like that Dirt Mile. Takes away from the Classic field. Sometimes takes away from the Sprint.

But, what's the use. We've been talking about that. Sorry to go off topic.

Tee
02-02-2018, 09:10 PM
Liam's Map won the dirt mile with relative ease in track record time at odds of 1/2.

Wasn't the easiest of trips either.

My rankings would be
1) Gun Runner
2) Arrogate
3) California Chrome
4) American Pharoah

I like the way reckless put it in his write up, just switch the top two. :)

SharpCat
02-03-2018, 05:17 AM
California Chrome was dominant in his 3 and 4 yo seasons running much faster than some of the public speed figures suggested, imo. I believe he was very underated as a runner but of course, the over the top public love fest for CC left him with very few true die hard fans.

I did not realize running twice as a 4yo and running 2nd both times makes you a dominant horse.

SharpCat
02-03-2018, 05:32 AM
No telling how good American Pharoah would have been as a 4yo but the 3yo version was a pretty dam good.

On pure talent

1-1a Arrogate, American Pharoah
3 Gun Runner
4 California Chrome

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oE4GJOHChlI

NY BRED
02-03-2018, 09:22 AM
Until a three year old win the Triple Crown AND the Breeders Cup
the champion/best horse on this topic is American Pharoah.

The incredible difficulty in keeping a three year old sound for the
triple crown speaks for itself based on distance and the condensed
time frame facing a three year old.

Thereafter, winning the Breeders Cup stands as a record that
will be diffcult to match, regardless which horses any of these
"competing"horses ever met AP in competition.

Closing Statenmennt: Secretariat, huge heart(literally) faced
and beat Sham(my pick) 3 times, with Sham finishing second.

Were Big Red not born, would Sham have been the Last Triple
Crown winner before AP and considered the best horse ever
in winning the Triple Crown?

thaskalos
02-03-2018, 09:45 AM
When we are asked to handicap a field of horses...do we just judge them according to their ability when they are "at their best"? Of course not! A horse may be a standout when "at its best"...but its current form may indicate that the horse is no longer capable of delivering its "best effort". These are the two fundamental questions that we ask when handicapping, IMO: 1) How good is a given horse "at its best"?...and 2) Is the horse at its best TODAY?

When I saw this thread...I envisioned the four listed horses lined up against each other in the starting gate, not in their "best form"...but in their RECENT form. In the art/science of handicapping, "recent form" speaks louder than "best form". And, judging by their recent form...Arrogate would trail the other three horses at the wire...IMO.

dilanesp
02-03-2018, 04:24 PM
Until a three year old win the Triple Crown AND the Breeders Cup
the champion/best horse on this topic is American Pharoah.

The incredible difficulty in keeping a three year old sound for the
triple crown speaks for itself based on distance and the condensed
time frame facing a three year old.

Thereafter, winning the Breeders Cup stands as a record that
will be diffcult to match, regardless which horses any of these
"competing"horses ever met AP in competition.

Closing Statenmennt: Secretariat, huge heart(literally) faced
and beat Sham(my pick) 3 times, with Sham finishing second.

Were Big Red not born, would Sham have been the Last Triple
Crown winner before AP and considered the best horse ever
in winning the Triple Crown?

This ia wrong. It is much more difficult to have a long career and win lots of races.

I am not a big fan of Secretariat retiring early either, but there is no comparison between Secretariat, who had a bunch of good races at 2, set a bunch of time records, and beat at least one great field of older horses in the Marlboro, to Pharoah's three races after the TC.

Also, Sham was correctly named. He was a nice 3 year old, but his finishing 3 lengths behind Secretariat in two races has led him to be highly overrated. If you want to talk asbout horses who would have won a TC in other years, Alydar and Easy Goer are the obvious examples.