“We’re not jumping through hoops or thinking Melbourne Cups, but [it’s] nice to have a winner.”
Before his suspension, Moody was renowned for travelling to the bush and running horses in an easier class, not only to pick up some prizemoney but to give his horses that winning feeling.
On the same day Black Caviar made her debut and won at Flemington, April 18, 2009, Moody sent Set For Fame to Hamilton. The mare, who went on to win three group 2s and run second in a Caulfield Guineas, won her maiden by seven lengths – wearing the same silks Shepard did on Sunday.
Group 1 star Moment Of Change also scored on debut in the bush, at Murtoa in 2011 by 10 lengths. Eight starts later, he won a Rupert Clarke.
Moody told The Age he would reignite his career with that same strategy before he hopes to add to his 56 group 1 wins in the future.
“There’s nothing like teaching them to win,” he said.
“They can learn to get a defeatist attitude or a winning attitude equally as quick, you know.”
Moody, now based at Pakenham, already has 23 named horses in his stable’s care, most of them ones he raced as an owner.
Shepard is among the more progressive horses in his care, with Sunday’s win over 2000 metres taking the four-year-old’s record to four wins and two seconds from seven career starts.
“It was good to see him win,” he said.
“The horse that ran along at a nice tempo made it a nice gallop for him which suited our bloke.
“I think he’ll develop into a nice handicap horse and he’ll win his share of races.
Moody added it was great to reunite with Nolen for the return win.
Another staying son of Sea The Moon, named Cernan, is nominated to race for Moody at Sandown on Wednesday, while Moody will unveil a number of maidens in the next week or two.
Moody added that Mr Quickie, a group 1 winner who he part-owns with Rosemont Stud, would remain with Pakenham trainer Phillip Stokes.
Damien Ractliffe is the Chief Racing Reporter for The Age.