13th June 2012 #1
Caviar works towards Diamond date
Peter Moody is likely to crank Black Caviar's Royal Ascot preparations up a notch with a more serious piece of work in Newmarket this weekend.
The unbeaten Australian superstar arrived in Britain last Thursday ahead of her tilt at the Diamond Jubilee Stakes, and has only been spotted doing light exercise on the gallops as Moody had ensured she was fighting fit before she left home soil.
The trainer is to touch down himself fairly shortly with a week and a half to go until Black Caviar's date with destiny.
"Tony (Hayden, assistant) is very pleased with her and said her general well-being is unbelievable," Moody told RSN's Racing Ahead podcast.
"She's bouncing out of her skin and he said to me please get over here quick-smart and start doing a bit more work with the horse. I'd rather it be that way than him saying we're struggling and I'm not happy with her.
"There's a beautiful artificial track called the Al Bahathri that is about nine furlongs, a slight dogleg track that goes up the middle of the grass gallops. You could even gallop on it but I'm anticipating on Saturday that if I'm as happy with her condition as the boys are reporting that she'll probably go a bit of evens on that.
"Then probably next Tuesday she would have a gallop on the grass. If I think she needs a bit more, then she can have a working gallop on the artificial on Saturday leading into a gallop on the grass on Tuesday."
Recent deluges have left many concerned Royal Ascot will take place on soft ground, and Moody has no concerns if that is the case.
"I think she trialled on about heavy 28 at Cranbourne one day and went through it like a duck, and numerous times in jump-outs and track gallops at Caulfield she has had to cope with wet conditions and it hasn't seemed to have fazed her," he said.
"Race conditions are a much different scenario but she's a big, heavy mare. It's well known she's got a few issues and those horses generally tend to appreciate a bit of cut in the ground. We don't want to see a bog track but what you find at Ascot is the straight course copes with the wet much better than the bottom anyway."
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