Wise Dan was crowned 2012 Horse of the Year at the 42nd annual Eclipse Awards in Florida on Saturday night.
The Charles Lopresti-trained six-year-old won the Breeders' Cup Mile at Santa Anita in November, and was successful in four of his other five starts last year.
Wise Dan also became the first horse since John Henry in 1981 to win the top award in addition to champion male Turf horse and champion older male.
Lopresti said: "There were a lot of good older horses last year.
"I was surprised he won the older horse.
"I could see us getting Turf horse because of what he did, but I felt he could get Horse of the Year, breaking two different track records."