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Champion Black Caviar rides into history books

Date

Steve Larkin and Doug Conway

BLACK CAVIAR etched her name in racing history with a record 20th consecutive win yesterday which amazed her trainer Peter Moody.

Black Caviar now holds the modern-day record for consecutive metropolitan wins after romping to victory at Adelaide's Morphettville racecourse.

The five-year-old claimed the $400,000 Sportingbet Classic, cruising to a 4-½-length win despite being eased down over the final stages.

Black Caviar eclipsed the 19 wins in a row record jointly held by Desert Gold and Gloaming in Australasia and Zenyatta in the United States.

''It's unbelievable isn't it, how she has coped with it,'' Moody said of his star mare's fame.

''Most of your sprinters are wound up, excitable types.

''But she's just so laid-back and takes it all in her stride.

''She's a remarkable horse.''

Black Caviar and jockey Luke Nolen made their move on the home turn in the 1200-metre sprint, with the sell-out 30,000-strong crowd roaring with approval.

''I was pretty happy with where she was,'' Moody said.

''Luke has got great faith in her ability and so have I.

''I don't think we ever had too much concern.

''Luke was pretty kind to her, he gave her one little smack on the bum and she did the rest.''

Moody and Black Caviar, who opened at $1.05, the shortest priced favourite in a group 1 race in half a century, are expected to return to Morphettville in two weeks for The Goodwood.

The Goodwood will be Black Caviar's last race in Australia before she travels to Britain for the famous Royal Ascot meeting where the glamour mare will tackle the Diamond Jubilee Stakes on June 23.

Moody, describing himself as a patriotic Australian, was rapt Black Caviar set the record in her home country. ''It's a great day, fabulous to see the people here enjoy the day,'' he said.

''I hope you enjoyed the show, she's one hell of a horse isn't she.''

Meanwhile, Sydney's Randwick racecourse all but ground to a halt while all eyes were glued on one horse … 1400km away.

Black Caviar commanded all the attention on the final day of Sydney's rich autumn carnival, at least for a few moments.

Randwick had its own cavalcade of attractions - four group 1 races worth $1.8 million including the Sydney Cup, Pierro completing the two-year-old triple crown, Atlantic Jewel remaining unbeaten too, More Joyous capping off a dream run for trainer Gai Waterhouse and owner John Singleton, and Melbourne Cup winners Efficient and Americain in action.

But at 4.23pm, Sydney's racing HQ all but stopped to follow the latest chapter in the Black Caviar fairytale. They watched her on big screens in the flat, in the parade ring, in the members' stand and in the bookies' ring.

Gai Waterhouse momentarily interrupted her celebrations of another victory for More Joyous to watch.

TAB Sportsbet resorted to pitting Black Caviar and Atlantic Jewel against each other in a head-to-head contest even though they were competing in different races, in different states.

Punters had to choose which of the two horses would win by the bigger margin (Black Caviar did).

Punters in Victoria could also back Black Caviar to win by four lengths or more, at odds of $1.90. She won by 4-½. Australian Turf Club racing manager Colin Tuck said yesterday's Randwick program had all the ingredients of the ''best final day of the Sydney carnival on record''.

Track manager Nevesh Ramdhani said: ''The only word I have is explosive. There is only one horse missing.'' AAP

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