Australia's legendary mare Black Caviar has been retired undefeated after winning her 25th race, an emotional trainer Peter Moody announced April 17.
In what was to be her final career start, the 6-year-old Bel Esprit mare won the T. J. Smith Stakes (Aus-I) April 13 to earn her 15th group I victory, eclipsing the record set in the early 1980s by the great Kingston Town. The T. J. Smith win marked her eighth straight at the group I level. It took her career earnings to Aus$7,497,754 for Moody and Neil Werrett and partners, who purchased her for Aus$210,000 from the Swettenham Stud, agent, consignment at the 2008 Inglis Melbourne premier yearling sale.
"Twenty-five's a great number and we thought she did us all proud on Saturday," Moody said on Racing Victoria's website. "The mare's in great shape. We thought long and hard about racing on for another season, we thought about (Royal) Ascot, we thought about Brisbane, we thought about Adelaide. But at the end of the day, we believe she's done everything we've asked her to do and she couldn't have possibly done any more. It's the right time to call it a day on what's been a wonderful career of maybe one of the finest horses we've ever seen."
Australia's champion sprinter and Horse of the Year in 2011 and 2012, Black Caviar was honored Feb. 21 when she became only the second horse to be inducted into the Australian Racing Hall of Fame while still racing. She was the world's top-rated sprinter in 2010, 2011, and 2012 on the World Thoroughbred Rankings published by the International Federation of Horseracing Authorities.
Black Caviar, who is out of the Desert Sun mare Helsinge, will make a farewell appearance at Caulfield April 20.
"It was always going to be a hard decision, but it would have been a worse decision if you ran on and something happened," said Werrett, who campaigned the megastar mare with friends Gary and Kerryn Wilkie, Colin and Jannene Madden, David and Jill Taylor, and Pam Hawkes.
"Now she can retire and we can look forward to racing her progeny," Werrett said.