Updated on 04/17/2013 9:43AM

Black Caviar, unbeaten Australian champion, retired

Darryl Sherer
Australian Horse of the Year Black Caviar has been retired unbeaten in 25 career starts.

Two-time reigning Australian Horse of the Year Black Caviar has been retired, her connections announced Wednesday morning.

The 6-year-old Bel Esprit mare swept all 25 of her career starts, including 15 Group 1 events. She bankrolled $7,497,754 while earning both Horse of the Year and champion sprinter honors in Australia in 2011 and 2012.

"Owners and myself had a long chat over the last couple of days and at lunchtime today we decided 25 was a great number to go out on," trainer Peter Moody told the Australian media. Moody made the announcement along with managing partner Neil Werrett.

“Collectively the mare is in great shape,” he added. “We thought long and hard about [Royal] Ascot, Brisbane and Adelaide but it’s a good time to finish as she’s done everything we’ve asked of her. It’s time to pull the career on one of our finest horses ever.”

In what would be her final career start, Black Caviar won the Group 1 T.J. Smith Stakes April 13 at Randwick for the second time, romping by three lengths.

Black Caviar, who was wildly popular in Australia and developed a considerable international fan base as well, will make a farewell appearance before her supporters at Caulfield on Saturday.

"I like to think we've done a great job promoting our sport," Moody said. "She brought interest to our sport that hasn't been there for decades. Black Caviars don't come along every day.''

One of Black Caviar's crowning accomplishments came during the famed Royal Ascot meeting in England last June, as she made her first start outside of her home country in the Group 1 Diamond Jubilee Stakes. Despite jockey Luke Nolen misjudging the finish line of the six-furlong race, the mare edged out Moonlight Cloud to win by a head. Black Caviar subsequently was discovered to have suffered muscle tears and bruising in the effort, and was given the rest of 2012 off.

Black Caviar returned none the worse for the wear to add three more Group 1 victories to her résumé in 2013. She began by taking her third edition of a race re-named for her, the Black Caviar Lightning Stakes in February at Flemington, and established a course record, running five furlongs in :55.42. She then captured the William Reid Stakes for a second time before winning the T.J. Smith.

“After Ascot we were going to retire, but in the finish, we got three more runs out of her," Moody said.

Black Caviar also won two editions of the Group 1 Victorian Racing Club. Along with her 15 Group 1 victories, she captured seven Group 2 stakes.

Moody purchased Black Caviar for about $197,337 out of the Swettenham Stud consignment at the 2008 Inglis Melbourne Premier yearling sale. She raced for a partnership headed by Werrett, which also included Gary and Kerryn Wilkie, Colin and Jannene Madden, Pam Hawkes, and David and Jill Taylor.

Out of the unraced Desert Sun mare Helsinge, Black Caviar is a half-sister to multiple Group 1 winner All Too Hard, who is by Casino Prince. Their yearling half-brother, by Redoute's Choice, recently established a record price for a yearling in Australia, selling for $5 million Australian at the Inglis Easter sale.

Helsinge produced a full sister to Black Caviar last year.

No plans for Black Caviar's broodmare career were immediately revealed on Wednesday. The mare's connections had previously said that they would consider a mating with unbeaten European champion Frankel, currently standing his first season at Juddmonte's Banstead Manor Stud in Newmarket, England. The Galileo horse will be available to mares on Southern Hemisphere time later this year.

However, since Black Caviar will not race at this year's Royal Ascot meeting, it is more likely that she will remain in Australia to be covered by a stallion in her home country.

"We've got a bit of time," Werrett said.