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The 6 Most Expensive Horses in the World: What They’re Worth

Last updated: November 30, 2023

By: Miles HenryFact Checked

While my grandson and I were visiting a horse farm recently, we started talking with one of their managers about prices, which quickly turned into a debate about the market. The conversation then shifted to the amount of money paid for the most expensive horses in the world.

Some of the most expensive horses in the world have sold for tens of millions of dollars. The most expensive horse ever sold was a thoroughbred named Fusaichi Pegasus, purchased for $70 million. The second most expensive horse was Justify, which was sold for $60 million in 2015.

Have you ever wondered about the most expensive horses in the world? In this blog post, we will take a look at the horses that have sold for the most money in the world. These horses were sold for millions of dollars. So, if you’re looking to make some money, why not start breeding horses? You may just own a million-dollar horse yourself.

Picture of one of the biggest horse races,

1. Fusaichi Pegasus- 70 million (2000)

  • Breed-Thoroughbred
  • Event-Racing
  • Year purchased-2000
  • Gender: Stallion

When Fusaichi Pegasus was foaled in 1997, he was immediately recognized as a potential champion. He went on to win the Kentucky Derby in 2000. After he retired from racing, he was sold to a syndicate for a record-breaking $60 million.

To put that figure into perspective, if you adjust for inflation, it would be equivalent to $104 million today. In other words, a lot of money. So what made Fusaichi Pegasus so expensive?

In addition to his impressive racing record, he was also a highly-regarded stud. His offspring went on to win seventy-five stake races. The high demand for his breeding services helped drive up his value, making him the most expensive racehorse in history.

Picture of Justify winning the Belmont Stakes.
Mike Lizzi from Nassau County, USA, CC BY-SA 2.0,

2. Justify- 60 million (2018)

  • Breed-Thoroughbred
  • Event-Racing
  • Year purchased-2018
  • Gender: Stallion

In 2018, a thoroughbred racehorse named Justify was valued at an impressive $75 million. Justify was a chestnut son of Scatcat. He was purchased at Keeneland’s September yearling auction for $500,000.

He began his racing career as a three-year-old and was undefeated in his six-race career, winning the Triple Crown—the Kentucky Derby, the Preakness Stakes, and the Belmont Stakes—in 2018.

He was only the thirteenth horse in history to achieve this feat, and his racing triumphs made him immensely valuable. His breeding rights were sold to Coolmore for $60 million combined with his $15 million winnings putting his value at $75 million.

3. Shareef Dancer- 40 million (1983)

  • Breed-Thoroughbred
  • Event-Racing
  • Year purchased-1983
  • Gender: Stallion

The third horse to make our list is Shareef Dancer; he was purchased in 1983 for $40 million. He raced in the UK and won three out of five races, including one Group I race, the Irish Derby Stakes.

So, what made Shareef Dancer so expensive? In short, it was a combination of factors. The timing was right; horse racing was flourishing, and Shareef Dancer was an incredibly fast horse with impeccable bloodlines. It was descended from one of the most successful studs in history, Northern Dancer.

4. The Green Monkey- 16 million (2006)

When you think of the most expensive horses in history, it’s hard not to think of The Green Monkey. He was sold for 16 million dollars when he was still a two-year-old colt, making him an instant celebrity.

He was a descendant of both Northern Dancer and Secretariat, so hopes were high for his racing career. However, that never materialized; he retired two years after he was purchased without ever winning a race and died in 2018 from complications due to laminitis.


5. Palloubet d’Halong- 15 million (2013)

  • Breed-Selle Francais
  • Event-Jumping
  • Year purchased-2013
  • Gender: Male (Gelding)

Jan Tops, an international riding school and competitive showjumping team owner, bought Palloubet d’Halong for $15 million USD. He is a 10-year old Selle Francais gelding (Baloubet du Rouet—Indra Love).

Jan Tops competed in four Olympics and won the gold medal in the team jumping event in 1992. He bought Palloubet d’Halong for his wife, Australian rider Edwina Alexander.

Palloubet d’Halong was developed and sold by Swiss rider Janika Sprunger. They competed successfully at the Grand Prix level. Because of his quick rise in the jumping world and his relatively young age, many people were willing to pay top dollar for this gelding.

Picture of horses racing at the Grand Nationals

6. MHS Going Global-13.5 million

Greek heiress and showjumper Athina Onassis purchased 10-year-old Irish superstar MHS Going Global. Before the sale, he competed on ten international teams, including two Longines FEI Nations Cup Finals (Spain).

The wealthy and famous Onassis is a top-notch equestrian, having represented Greece at the 2013 European Championships (Denmark) and the 2014 FEI World Equestrian Games (France).

She’s also part of an elite group that can call themselves frequent competitors on the Longines Global Champions Tour. These two should work well together.

What Is the Most Expensive Yearling?

One of the most famous yearling auctions is the Keeneland September Yearling Sale, which takes place in Lexington, Kentucky. This sale is one of the largest and most prestigious horse auctions in the world. It’s here that you’ll find the most expensive yearlings.

Seattle Dancer- 13.1 million

  • Breed-Thoroughbred
  • Event-Racing
  • Year purchased-1985
  • Gender: Stallion

The highest-selling yearling of all time was a colt named Seattle Dancer, which was sold for $13.1 million in 1985. Seattle Dancer was a particularly valuable horse because he was considered to be an excellent racing prospect and a descendant of Northern Dancer.

He went on to win several races before being retired to stud, where he produced many successful offspring. Today, Seattle Dancer’s record price remains unsurpassed, making him the most expensive yearling ever sold.

Picture of a dressage horse,

What Is the Most Expensive Dressage Horse?

Dressage is a competitive sport in which horses and riders perform a predetermined set of movements. These movements are designed to showcase the horse’s natural athleticism and grace.

Dressage is often compared to ballet, as both sports require immense control and skill. Dressage originated in Greece and quickly spread throughout Europe. Dressage was initially used as a training method for military horses.

However, it soon became popular among the general public as a way to show off their horse’s skills. Today, dressage is still a popular sport, with competitions being held all over the world. Dressage requires years of practice and dedication, both from the horse and the rider. So, what dressage horse sold for the most money?

Moorlands Totilas- 10.6 million

Breed-Dutch Warmblood
Year purchased-2010
Gender: Stallion

Moorlands Totilas was a dressage horse who attracted a lot of attention – and a lot of money – during his career. Totilas was known for his exceptional movements, his ability to execute complicated dressage routines with ease, and his striking black coat.

This made him a sought-after horse for both dressage competitions and demonstrations. In 2010, Paul Schockemöhle, along with German dressage rider Matthias Rath, purchased Totilas for a record-breaking price of €9 million.

This made Totilas the most expensive dressage horse in history. While some criticized the high price tag, others saw it as a sign of dressage’s growing popularity – and profitability. Totilas died in 2020 at 20 years old due to severe colic.

Picture of a white Arabian horse

What is the Most Expensive Arabian Horse?

Arabian horses are prized for their beauty, agility, and strength. Arabian horses have been bred for centuries in the Arabian Peninsula. They are known for their distinctive features, including a high tail carriage, a dished face, and small, pointed ears.

Arabian horses are also known for their excellent temperament and intelligence. Arabian horses are versatile athletes and can excel in various disciplines, from dressage to endurance riding. Arabian horses are also popular pets, and many people enjoy watching them perform in horse shows.

In addition to their beauty and athleticism, Arabian horses also have a strong emotional connection with humans. Arabian horses have been featured in art and literature for centuries, and they continue to be one of the most popular breeds of horses today. So, what is the most expensive Arabian horse?

Padron-11 million

  • Breed-Arabian
  • Event-Dressage
  • Year purchased-1986
  • Gender: Stallion

Padron was a renowned show horse in halter. He was the Canadian National Champion Stallion at halter in 1981 and followed that up with an impressive U.S. title win one year later.

Padron was also a successful stud who left behind an incredible legacy. He sired 770 pure-bred offspring, including 50 winners of National Shows and 12 international champions, with over 180 others that ranked.

Marwan Al Shaqab- 20 million (value)

Marwan is considered the most valuable Arabian horse of all time. Its owner was offered 20 million for the stallion and turned it down. Since Marwan wasn’t sold, Padron retains the title of the most expensive Arabian horse.

quarter horse looking edited

What is the Most Expensive Quarter Horse?

Quarter horses are a popular breed of horse known for their versatility and athleticism. These horses are often used in rodeos and racing, and they are also popular as trail and pleasure horses. Quarter horses are considered a premium breed, and they typically command high prices.

Moonin The Eagle- 2.1 million

  • Breed-Quarter horse
  • Event-Racing
  • Year purchased- 2018
  • Gender: Stallion

Moonin The Eagle sold at the 2018 Heritage Place Fall Mixed Sale for an all-time racing Quarter Horse stallion at an auction record price of $2,100,000. He was a champion racehorse who had won 10 of his 14 career starts.

Along the way, he set two track records: Remington Park 440 yards at 20.808 seconds and the 440-yard track record at Hialeah Park in: 21.192 seconds. Moonin The Eagle also had a successful career as a sire.

What is the Most Expensive Stud Fee?

Thoroughbred stud fees are some of the most expensive in the horse world. Many factors contribute to this high cost, including the high demand for these horses and the pricey investments required to buy them.

Thoroughbred stud fees can range from a few thousand dollars to hundreds of thousands of dollars, making them only affordable for a select few. For those who are able to purchase a Thoroughbred stud, however, the investment can be well worth it.

These horses are known for their speed, agility, and strength, and they often go on to win prestigious races and reap large purses. As a result, their stud fees reflect both their potential value and the significant investments required to produce them. So what is the most expensive stud fee?

Dubawi: $326,499.75

  • Breed-Thoroughbred
  • Event-Racing
  • Gender: Stallion

The stud fee for Dubawi is expensive because he is one of the most successful sires in the world. He is currently 20 years old, and his offspring have captured all the major European titles. He is also known for producing great sires and is often called “the sire of sires.”

While his high price tag may put some off, breeders who are looking to produce top-quality racehorses know that Dubawi is worth the investment.

Below is an enlightening YouTube video that shows why racing sire prospects are so expensive.

YouTube video

Tapit: $300,000

  • Breed-Thoroughbred
  • Event-Racing
  • Gender: Stallion

The thoroughbred stud Tapit long held the title of the most expensive sire. In his prime, he bred up to 150 mares a year at a record stud fee of $300,000. At his peak, he was earning 35 million a year. He is one of the most influential stallions in horse racing history.

Tapit has sired 28 Grade 1 winners, 32 of his yearlings sold for $1 million or more at auction, and has produced winners of over S182 million on race tracks, making him the number one North American sire of all time.

Picture of a Friesian horse. One of the most expensive horse breeds.

What is the Most Expensive Friesian?

The Friesian horse is a beautiful breed of horse that is native to the Netherlands. These horses are usually black, and they are known for their elegant build and flowing manes and tails.

Friesians are also known for their pleasant dispositions, and they are often used in dressage and other forms of riding. Because of their desirable qualities, Friesians can be quite expensive.

The most expensive Friesian reportedly sold for over half a million dollars; however, I couldn’t find any information to back this up. Regardless, they are an expensive breed, and while most people will never be able to afford a horse like this, it is still fun to dream about owning one of these majestic creatures.