SHE’S made millions, appeared on front pages and her sizeable rump has been compared to the booties of Beyonce and J- Lo. Her Facebook page has more than 30,000 likes and her list of fans extends from your average Joe in outback Australia to Queen Elizabeth II in Buckingham Palace.
Now, Black Caviar also has her own biography.
The life of the six- year- old champion mare, whose resume boasts 22 wins in an undefeated career, has been sprawled over 381 pages by race caller Gerard Whateley in an authorised text: Black Caviar: The Horse of a Lifetime.
Whateley’s access to trainer Peter Moody and jockey Luke Nolen is evident as he delves into Moody’s childhood and career and the emotional journey of Nolen.
The early chapters explain the stroke of genius of Black Caviar’s breeder Rick Jamieson when he married together the never- raced mare Helsinge and Group 1- winning Bel Esprit.
Whateley tells how Black Caviar’s owners put their heads, and purses, together to invest in the horse known affectionately as Nelly.
The horse that has won almost $ 7 million in prize money was originally bought by a group of friends for $ 210,000.
But the author’s behind- the- scenes access is most instrumental in the book’s final chapters, where he reveals the lesser known story of the mare’s latest race in England at Royal Ascot in the Diamond Jubilee Stakes, which she went on to win, but only by a nose.
Whateley does well to interpret racing’s sometimes exclusive language for the layman. His descriptive detail of race meetings gives an insight into the hype of race day.
In the final pages we are left contemplating the unbeaten celebrity’s retirement – a suggestion that was put to bed on September 27 with Moody’s announcement that there will be another chapter. Australia’s favourite racehorse will saddle up again.
MARE: Black Caviar ridden by Luke Nolen in the Diamond Jubilee Stakes.
BLACK CAVIAR – THE HORSE OF A LIFETIME by Gerard Whateley ABC Books, $ 45