The countdown to the Sydney Spring Racing...
Australia’s turf darling Black Caviar has stepped up work in preparation for her new season return, the undefeated queen due to resume racing in the 2013 Lightning Stakes during the Melbourne Autumn Racing Carnival.
Peter Moody’s $6.8 million earner was last seen winning her maiden international assignment when scoring a narrow victory in the Group 1 Diamond Jubilee Stakes (1207m) at Britain’s Royal Ascot in late June.
She suffered a number of injuries during that gutsy effort and there were talks of the 22 time winner bowing out of racing.
After taking it slow and steady with her recovery, connections made the decision to race on with Black Caviar for another season with her swansong campaign likely to span across a trio of states for three Group 1 runs.
The first is scheduled as the $700,000 Group 1 Black Caviar Lightning Stakes (1000m) down the straight at Flemington on February 16, a race Black Caviar has won for the past two years on the trot having defeated Hay List by 3.5 lengths first-up in 2011 before getting the better of the same rival this February third-up.
After the 2013 Lightning Stakes Moody is looking at heading to Sydney in April for the Group 1 TJ Smith Stakes (1200m) at Royal Randwick before allowing her to finish up in his home state of Queensland where she could defend her title in the Group 1 BTC Cup (1200m) at Doomben in mid-May during the Brisbane Winter Racing Carnival.
Of course all of this is still up in the air with the mare, currently residing at the country Victoria property at Murchison of Peter Clarke who invented the very popular water walker for horses, to guide Moody and co. as to how she is feeling and where she goes exactly as they look to keep her flawless record intact ahead of her retirement.
“She’s been back with (pre-trainer) Peter for five weeks now where she’s done three weeks’ work followed by two weeks off that she completes today,” Moody said Sunday in an interview on RSN.
“She’s full bore from tomorrow towards the Lightning.
“We’re very happy with her but obviously extremely conscious of the situation we are in with her that we don’t want to see her beaten now.
“We certainly won’t hesitate to retire her along the way but I’m hopeful that we do get her back to the track in the great form that she’s shown all along.”
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