It would be highly unusual if the owner of a history making horse didn’t lavish praise on his own charge and of course Clive Smith is no different. Although he believes comparisons are difficult to make, owner Clive Smith believes Kauto Star’s achievements stack up well against those of any other horse in history.

A disappointing 2010/11 season had put question marks over the all time ranking status of Kauto Star but they’re nothing but a distant memory following his recent win in the William Hill King George VI Chase on Boxing Day, when the 12-year-old gelding made history to become the first horse to win the Kempton classic five times.

Surprisingly, even on his highest Timeform rating, he still fell some way short of Arkle, who is widely considered to be the finest horse ever after his three Cheltenham Gold Cups and other phenomenal weight-carrying performances in the 1960s.

“It has been very interesting reading about the comparisons with the greats of the past,” Smith said.

“Obviously this is an exceptional horse. I’m from the golfing world, where you look at Tiger Woods against the likes of Jack Nicklaus and Gary Player back to Gene Sarazen and Bobby Jones, and I think it’s very difficult to compare stars from different eras.

I’m not quite sure what Kauto Star has to do in his incredible career to top Arkle but maybe another Cheltenham Gold Cup in March would bolster his all time rankings!