Black Caviar: set to race over 7f for the first time as she goes for 18th winPICTURE: Getty Images
Black Caviar steps up in trip for 18-in-a-row bid
Preview: Australia, Saturday 4.50am GMT (live onATR)
Caulfield: Sportingbet CF Orr Stakes (Group 1) 7f, turf, 3yo+
TRAINER Peter Moody finally gets his wish on Saturday when the brilliant Black Caviar (Luke Nolen) steps up in trip in Melbourne as she bids to extend her unbeaten sequence to 18.
The five-year-old is bound for Royal Ascot in June, probably via atrip to Dubai for the Golden Shaheen. First, though, she has more business at home as she moves up to 7f for the Group 1 CF Orr Stakes at Caulfield.
"It's something I've always talked up and wanted to see happen," said Moody, quoted by AAP Racing. "I've always felt she'd be just as explosive if not more so out to 1400 metres and I've suggested even possibly a mile so this is a step in that direction on Saturday.
"I want to see her strong at the end of 1400 metres to give me a positive to going to the solid 1200s in England on those undulating tracks.
"I just want to see how she goes about it," he added. "She's not out to be running records or big margins. I've got every confidence in her ability to run it."
Regular partner Luke Nolen agreed. "She'll be as effective, if not more, at 1400," he said. "I can't see any reason why anybody should be worried about it."
Moody confirmed that the major goal this year is the Diamond Jubilee Stakes, while the Golden Shaheen at Meydan on the Dubai World Cup card on March 31 is also in the mix.
Moody said he would fly to Dubai to have a look at the Tapeta all-weather surface at Meydan after Black Caviar runs in the Futurity Stakes at Caulfield on February 25.
Saturday's race has a bizarre complexion as the world's number one sprinter features in a nine-runner field full ofhorses with form over longer trips.
These are headed by Southern Speed (Leon Macdonald & Andrew Gluyas/Craig Williams),who won the Caulfield Cup over 1m4f in October. She had a pipe-opener last month when scoring in Listed company over this course and distance.
Former European-trained pair Midas Touch (Robert Hickmott/Steven King) and Illo (Bart Cummings/Kerrin McEvoy) also line up, as does 2007 Melbourne Cup winner Efficient (Robert Hickmott/Eddie Cassar).
None of them has run since the Melbourne spring carnival, where Illo and stablemate Precedence (Bart Cummings/Steve Arnold) set the pace in the Melbourne Cup.
"Horses like Southern Speed are going to be coming at you the last furlong," said Moody, who suggested appearances may have been deceptive when it comes to the apparent ease of Black Caviar's victories.
"I don't think anything's effortless," he said. "I don't think the fact Luke has eased her down, it's only been a matter of strides, and the times she's run suggest she's never had a soft run in her life.
"People look at it and say `God she's gone easy' but the times suggest otherwise."
Victory in the Orr would bring Black Caviar up to the 18 metropolitan wins in succession posted by Ajax between 1937 and 1939.
The Australasian record for consecutive victories at top-level tracks is 19, held jointly by Desert Gold and Gloaming. However, both Miss Petty and Sava Jet won 22 on the spin at low-grade Queensland bush tracks.