Why You Have to Back Black Caviar

I reckon this is our chance to break the Trans-Australian Bank. The TAB giveth and the TAB taketh away, and as a tote it has always had the wood on us. However, recent betting trends have meant that TattsBet has become a book-maker. And once you enter the world of fixed-price betting, you’re ripe for the picking.

On Saturday, Black Caviar heads out again. She contests the Group 1 C.F. Orr Stakes at Caulfield, one of the races of the autumn, where she is the $1.04 favourite. I like this race, because good horses have won it and also because I am a huge Vo Rogue fan. He seemed to win it every year for a decade. Saintly also won it.

Black Caviar is attempting to post her 18th race win. More importantly, she is attempting to remain undefeated which is very hard to get your head around.

She should win easily. Only Southern Speed, an extremely smart mare, and a versatile performer, seems to be any threat in what is not a stellar field. Playing God has form at top level. The stayers look to be miles off. Doubtful Jack has only ever seen her from a distance.

Black Caviar’s runs this time in have been impressive enough, measured against her own performances, and super-impressive measured against normal thoroughbreds. We forget.

So, load up. Check behind the couch. Delve into your old dinner jacket. Empty the Datsun’s ash-tray. Take as much of the $1.04 as you can. This maybe the only chance we ever have to break the TAB.

Ahhhh, but there’s always a complication. A what if? A worst-case scenario.

Apart from the regulation complications that are possible on any given day – caught in the barrier, a little off colour, hoop falls off, shies at a blue-tongue lizard, inhales a willy wag-tail, struck by lightning, spooked by a Tiger Moth en route to Moorabbin, weighs in light (don’t worry they’ve all cost us) – there is the big one: it’s her first try beyond 1200m.

What if 1350 is her absolute limit?

I base my thesis on the Ardent Knight factor. For a few weeks many years ago I had a reasonable run (believe that if you will) and was alive in the Adelaide quaddie each Saturday. Each week I would include the roughie Ardent Knight who was lightning. He had massive speed from the barrier, and could cruise at a real clip. Week in, week out he looked the winner with 200 to go, and still looked the winner at the 100. But he always punctured at the 50. Yet I always put him in, perhaps hoping for a tail wind, or some other divine intervention.

What if Black Caviar gets the stitch?

There are no certainties in racing, which is why it drives us nuts.

I look forward to the great mare putting on her show in the Orr. And I now have a pocketful of cash.

I’ve just won a bet that I couldn’t compare Ardent Knight to Black Caviar.