Black Caviar retires perfect

Champion Australian mare Black Caviar has been officially retired by trainer Peter Moody and her owners. The announcement was made at a press conference held at Moody's Caulfield Racecourse stable in Melbourne on Wednesday.

The news comes on the back of Black Caviar's thrilling 25th straight victory in Saturday's Group 1 T.J. Smith in Sydney.

While the the Goodwood, BTC Cup and a trip to Royal Ascot in June had been mooted by Moody as a possible 26th start, the leading trainer said Black Caviar had nothing left to prove.

"The owners and I have had a long chat over the last couple of days, deciding this afternoon at lunchtime that 25 was a great number," Moody said. "We thought she did us proud on Saturday.

"Collectively we've decided that the mare's in great shape; we've thought long and hard about racing on for another season. At the end of the day we believe she's done everything we've asked her to do and she could possibly have done no more. It's the right time to call it a day on what's been a wonderful career and one of the finest horses we've ever seen."

Undefeated in 25 lifetime starts -- 24 of them stakes -- Black Caviar was triumphant at the top level 15 times. Her Group 1 victories included three editions of the Lightning; two editions each of the T.J. Smith, Victoria Racing Club and William Reid; and the BTC Cup, Newmarket Handicap, Goodwood Handicap, C.F. Orr, and Robert Sangster.

In her lone race outside Australia, Black Caviar was a thrilling, photo-finish winner of the Group 1 Diamond Jubilee at the 2012 Royal Ascot meet in England.

A six-year-old daughter of Bel Espirt, Black Caviar bankrolled nearly $7.5 million and was the two-time reigning Australian Horse of the Year.

Produced by the Desert Sun mare Helsinge, Black Caviar is a half-sister to current multiple Group 1 winner All Too Hard. Helsinge is herself a half-sister to Group 1 winner Magnus and Group 2 winners Scandiva and Wilander.