There are a mind-boggling array of horses in Red Dead Redemption 2, 19 breeds in fact, from the mighty-but-slow Shire breed to the quick and nimble Mahogany Bay. You can outfit your horses with better tack to improve their speed or handling, and bond with them to gain their trust so you can do sick burnouts and horse drifts. But sooner or later you're gonna want to get the best horse in the West, and that's where Elite horses come in.
Where to find the best horses in Red Dead Redemption 2
Elite Handling horses are the most expensive types you can find for sale at stables around the Red Dead Redemption 2 map. These horses are built for long rides, which massive stamina pools and decent speed. If you want fast, but easily-tired then go for Race Handling, and if you haven't got rich quick in Red Dead Redemption 2 yet, then just go for the Standard Handling.
We're going to assume you're flush with cash and ready to shell out for the best horse in the game, though. Stables have a random assortment of horses and stats whenever you visit them (every two days or so stock rotates so keep checking back). However, the Stables with the best selection of horses can be found in two towns: Saint Denis, and Blackwater.
Of course, if you've already begun the game's story you know that going back to Blackwater any time soon just ain't gonna go over nicely with the locals, so these are some very endgame good horses. Saint Denis can be reached around Chapter 4 in the story, so still a good ways through the game, but of course if you fancy riding there early go for it. However, make sure you've made that cash first! The Elite Handling horses at each stable will cost you between $1,000 and $1,300 depending on the breed and attributes you roll randomly.
Based on average stats we've seen, the horse breeds that offer the best all-round stats for riding long distances fast are Mahogany Bay Tennessee Walkers, Turkoman, Arabian and War Horses. If you pre-ordered the game you'll have one of these waiting for you at the first stable, here's how to get your War Horse pre-order.
How to get the best horse stats in Red Dead Redemption 2
Now just buying yourself a good stock horse isn't enough to get you the best horse in the game. You have to upgrade and outfit your horse with as many boons and benefits as you can. On top of keeping it fed and cleaned, you'll need to bond with your horse all over again after buying a new one. However there are also stirrups and saddles and other tack that will improve the stats of your new best friend. So far we've found the Gerden Trail or Vaquero to be the best saddle to put on your horse, but there's plenty of other good tack out there to outfit your steed. And finally, make sure you have Horse Stamina Tonics and other supplies that can push your horse's health and stamina meters beyond their maximum, or reduce their core depletion rate. Add all these upgrades onto an Elite Handling stock horse and that'll give you the best horse in the West!