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Tapp's Travels: Black Caviar

As our TrueNicks tour continues, Byron and I traveled north out of the Waikato region to Auckland, the largest city in New Zealand. Here we visited Russell Warwick at Westbury Stud and Shannon Taylor at Haunui. The Westbury stallions have now joined TrueNicks for the first time, and Haunui – a longtime TrueNicks supporter – announced Showcasing, their exciting new Oasis Dream stallion.

From the bridge overlooking Auckland.

From Auckland, Byron flew to his hometown of Sydney while I traveled to Melbourne. My tour included farms throughout Victoria, including historic Mornmoot Stud, where 1979 Australian champion sire Century stood. Century's barn is still as it was in the 1970s, with Century's old stall now occupied by El Cumbres, a Chilean champion 2-year-old by Hussonet. Mornmoot is also home to Viking Ruler, a group I-winning son of Danehill.

Hoping for a meal, Viking Ruler rushes to greet a paddock visitor.

After a successful three days in Victoria that saw new farms join TrueNicks, I stayed in Melbourne for Friday night's running of the William Reid Stakes (gr. I, video below) featuring the sprinting filly sensation, Black Caviar. The day before, I had visited Black Caviar's sire, Eliza Park's Bel Esprit (AUS) (TrueNicks,SRO), and it was clear at first sight that the filly has inherited her sire's powerhouse build. The world's highest-rated racehorse ran to her reputation, easily dominating a field of top sprinters. Thousands of fans raised banners in her honor, cautioning BLINK AND YOU'LL MISS HER. Her record is now 11 wins from 11 starts. The William Reid may have been the first time Black Caviar was asked to move to the lead, but around the tight Moonee Valley turn, the "Black Flash" met the task. Then, in the stretch, her stride efficiency was on display as she distanced herself from last year's Golden Slipper (gr. I) winner, Crystal Lily.

Black Caviar now owns seven group race wins against open company. It was a pleasure to see one of them in person.

Black Caviar doesn't dance, she just wins.

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