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Country racing legend on hand for Battle of the Bush heat

Peter-Moody.JPGBy Jordan Gerrans 

As the Battle of the Bush heats head to Charleville this weekend, a favourite son of country racing in Queensland will be on track for the race at Central Warrego Race Club.

Of the 16 qualifiers for the 2021 series, six have already been run and won, with two more on the agenda this Saturday, being Charleville and Jandowae.

Training legend Peter Moody, who started his journey in the Downs region of Queensland, is back in the area this weekend alongside a group of mates, including former AFL footballer Sam Kekovich, for the club’s five-event non-TAB program.

The Queensland Racing Hall of Fame member best known for his feats with the great Black Caviar, Moody was unable to attend his beloved Charleville races last year and is keen to get back and see some familiar faces.

“I have been out here for a day already and we are looking forward to the Charleville races on Saturday,” Moody said on Thursday afternoon.

“It is not an unusual thing; I try and get here as often as possible and I was not able to do that last year with COVID.

“It will be good to get out there to the local show and the races on Saturday.

“It is always good to catch up with the people in the bush.”

The Central Warrego Race Club have named races after Moody and Kekovich for Saturday, with the legend trainers race to be a Benchmark 60 Handicap over 1200m. 

Earlier this year, Central Warrego Race Club secretary Carrie Wyatt said Moody always loves to get back to his roots, including seeing his friends from his school days at the town.

“He has never changed, when you meet him now, he is the same person he was as a kid,” Wyatt said.

“He will often come back around here away from race days, that was more when he was not training and had more time on his hands.

“He came out a few times for the Battle of the Bush when he was not training.

“He is booked to come out again to speak at a function around our May meeting later this year, which we are all looking forward too.”

Battle-of-the-Bush.JPGAfter taking a break from training in 2016, Moody has made a return to the Victorian ranks over the last year, basing himself at Pakenham.

He has trained 31 winners this season from 193 starters.

“We have 40 in work and we are chipping away,” Moody said.

“We are getting a few winners, we are not winning out of turn, but we are going ok.”

On the Charleville BOTB heat, Roma trainer Wayne Baker is a good chance to qualify one from his stable for the Final, having three gallopers set to go around this Saturday.

Mark Johnstone and John Patterson will also have two starters each in the Charleville heat, which will be run as an Open Handicap (1200m) and double as the Charleville Newmarket.

At Jandowae, Dalby trainer David Reynolds is looking to start two from his stable in the Open Plate (1200m) to book a spot to Brisbane.

Such is the popularity of the series in Jandowae, there is a full 10 horse field - with two emergencies - with Music Scene, for Reynolds, one of the two hoping to force their way in before Saturday’s race.