Moody targets Bendigo Cup 

CHAMPION trainer Peter Moody could have a two-pronged attack for this month’s $250,000 Jayco Bendigo Cup (2400m).

Speaking in Bendigo yesterday at the Gallic Club lunch, Moody confirmed his promising stayers  Vatuvei and Guns At Five are likely to run in the Listed event on October 31.

“Vatuvei and Guns At Five are still in the Melbourne Cup, but we’ll probably drop them back a peg or two and come to Bendigo,’’ Moody said.

“They’ll both be suited in a race like the Bendigo Cup.

“Vatuvei won the VRC St Leger this year and Guns At Five won the New Zealand St Leger.”

Moody’s biggest rival in the Bendigo Cup could be the Lloyd Williams-raced Excluded.

Nick Williams, who was also a special guest at yesterday’s Gallic Club lunch, confirmed Excluded will be the stable’s number one runner in the Bendigo Cup.

The highlight of the luncheon yesterday was Moody and stable jockey Luke Nolen talking about the career of champion sprinter Black Caviar.

The grand mare has won all 22 of her career starts and is presently in the spelling paddock recovering from a muscle strain suffered in the lead-up to her thrilling win at Royal Ascot in June.

“Black Caviar hasn’t been sound since her second race start,’’ Moody said yesterday.

 “She’s had injuries and ailments at every start since then.

“But she just has an unbelievable will to win... all champion sportspeople have that will to win. She never lets pain get to her.”

 Moody purchased  Black Caviar and multiple Group winners Set To Fame and Reward For Effort all on the same day at the Melbourne Premier Yearling Sales.

“Black Caviar and Set To Fame had their first starts on the same day,’’ he said.

“Set For Fame went to Hamilton for a 1200m race and Black Caviar went to Flemington for a 1000m race.

“I was at Flemington and watched the Hamilton race with (champion trainer) Lee Freedman.

“Set For Fame won by nine lengths and Lee turned to me and said ‘I think you’ve got a good one there’.

“I said just wait a few minutes and you’ll see one that goes even better.

“Black Caviar then went out at Flemington and won comfortably.”

It was after Black Caviar’s second start at Caulfield that Moody realised he had a very good horse.

“She was up against four or five really good horses that day and she missed the kick,’’ he said.

“She went around them, went to the front and won easy, eased up.”

Her 10th career win in the Newmarket Handicap remains a highlight for Moody and Nolen.

The pair spent two hours after that meeting signing Black Caviar memorabilia for her hordes of fans.

“That’s when it really sank in that Black Caviar was the people’s horse,’’ Moody said.

Moody revealed that win number 22 at Royal Ascot earlier this year nearly didn’t eventuate.

“On the Friday night I thought about scratching her,’’ he said.

“She was running on empty. She was stuffed through a culmination of injuries.

“We decided to back her ability to carry her through. She didn’t let us down.”

At this stage Black Caviar is on track to return to racing in the Lightning Stakes at Flemington in February.

“If at any time between now and then she’s not right, you won’t see her race again,’’ Moody said.

“I’ll be happy to settle for 22 wins in a row.”

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