Black Caviar took her most positive step so far towards a return to racing with a surprise first public appearance for the year at Sandown yesterday morning.
The unbeaten mare contested a jump-out, her first piece of serious racetrack competition since her famous Royal Ascot victory in June.
Sitting deep from the start of the 800-metre contest, Black Caviar dominated the jump-out from the home turn as she put a space between herself and her rivals.
"It was just a soft half-mile jump-out and I'm very happy with her," trainer Peter Moody said.
The Sandown excursion confirmed Black Caviar is making excellent progress as she prepares for an exhibition gallop between races on her home track at Caulfield on February 2.
It's likely to be her final public appearance at the track.
Black Caviar is scheduled to make her racing return in the $500,000 Group 1 Lightning Stakes at Flemington on February 16.
"That's the race we've always suggested will be the race she kicks off in," Moody said.
A farewell campaign for the $6.8 million earner is expected to take in races in Sydney and Brisbane.
Black Caviar took her record to 22 wins from 22 starts when she overcame muscle tears and bruising to win the Diamond Jubilee Stakes at Royal Ascot. AAP