Unbeaten Black Caviar wins at Royal Ascot
Sun, 24 Jun 2012 7:55a.m.
Black Caviar overcame a complacent ride from jockey Luke Nolen to win a thrilling Diamond Jubilee Stakes at Royal Ascot by a short head, extending her unbeaten record to 22 races in her first run outside her native Australia.
Going off as the 1-6 favourite, the Peter Moody-trained mare only scraped home in front of the watching Queen Elizabeth II and around 80,000 fans after Nolen appeared to ease up with the finishing line in sight.
"It's unfortunate because we're going to talk more about my brain failure than the horse's fantastic effort," a distraught Nolen said. "We got away with it."
Moonlight Cloud, a 5-1 shot, placed second in a tense finish ahead of Restiadargent (40-1), who both threatened to end Black Caviar's winning streak in the tightest race of the five-day Diamond Jubilee meeting that marked the Queen's 60-year reign.
The 6-year-old Black Caviar's mere presence created a real buzz at Ascot, with racegoers keen to get a view or photo of the parading mare after her voyage of 10,500 miles from Australia at the start of the month.
Drawn in the outside stall, she settled quickly in third and took the lead in the six-furlong race with a little more than a furlong remaining. She failed to pull clear as expected, however, and came under severe pressure, with only some late cajoling by Nolen allowing Black Caviar to squeeze to victory.
"You've only got to win by a quarter of an inch - we got the job done," Moody said. "We never expect dominance, we never ask her for dominance. We are extremely proud of her.
"I'm an extremely proud Aussie. It's very fitting that it's with a horse like this."
The win brought her career earnings to just short of 4 million pounds ($6.2 million).
Black Caviar is ranked second in the world among flatracing horses behind Frankel, who won the Queen Anne Stakes here by 11 lengths on Tuesday.
A potential meeting between the stars of the northern and southern hemispheres inter fitness for races in Australia in the second half of 2012.
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