Imperatriz Confirmed World No.1 Sprinter

Date: 22 Feb 2024

Imperatriz Confirmed World No.1 Sprinter

Thoroughbred Racing Commentary (TRC) Global Rankings reports:

Imperatriz confirmed her status as the world’s top sprinter on turf with her ninth G1 victory as she made her comeback after a summer break in the Black Caviar Lightning Stakes at Flemington on Saturday [Feb 17].

Although the five-year-old was sent off odds-on favourite in an eight-runner field for Melbourne’s premier five-furlong sprint, Imperatriz was made to work for the victory by a dogged rival in Private Eye.

The latter made the running at a relatively moderate tempo, ceding the advantage only a furlong out and then sticking on gamely before losing by only a head to his exalted opponent.

While this wasn’t flashy, the winner’s connections were possibly just relieved she got the win after a questionable recent barrier trial. And while she gained only a minor 22pt boost on Thoroughbred Racing Commentary’s Global Rankings, she moves up a place to #4, with only Hong Kong star Golden Sixty above her among horses currently in training.

“Good horses probably save their best for raceday,” said Mark Walker (trainer rank #17 from #19, +39pt), who trains Imperatriz for the Te Akau Racing team.

“It was a lacklustre trial, it really was, but when we galloped her on Monday, we were really happy with her,” added Walker.

“She’s a gem, really, to do it in the spring and come back and win like that. It was a top ride by Opie [Bosson]. It was a really tactical affair, and he used his initiative.”

Depending on the weight assignment, Imperatriz could run next in the Newmarket Handicap back at Flemington on March 9, though the TJ Smith at Sydney’s Championships meeting at Randwick is considered a more probable option.


Sign up to our newsletter