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Japan’s Just A Way has been rated the best horse in the world for 2014

• Runaway success in Dubai Duty Free earns horse top spot
• Kingman in joint third place after being forced to retire

Just A Way, who won only three of his six starts last year and finished seventh behind Treve in the Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe, was named the World’s Best Racehorse of 2014 at a ceremony in London on Tuesday thanks to his outstanding six-and-a-quarter lengths victory in the Dubai Duty Free at Meydan in March. Epiphaneia, who beat Just A Way by four lengths in the Japan Cup in November, completed a one-two for Japanese-trained horses in the awards, which are based on annual ratings determined by an international panel of handicappers, while Australia, the Derby winner, was one of five horses on the third rung of the ladder, 3lb behind Just A Way.

Just A Way is the first Japanese-trained racehorse to head the international ratings at the end of the Flat season, and while the title of “World’s Best Racehorse” might jar with anyone who backed him on his final three outings of the year, all of which ended in defeat, his victory in the Duty Free was the undoubted highlight of World Cup night at Meydan in March. It was a reasonable choice as the outstanding individual performance of the year, and enough to earn him a final rating of 130.

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