Flamberge scored a narrow victory over Holler in the 2016 William Reid Stakes at Moonee Valley on Friday night to send trainer Peter Moody off with yet another win at the highest level of racing.
The Moonee Valley meeting on Thursday night was the final of Moody’s training career after he elected to close his stable following the six month suspension he received for presenting Lidari at the races with cobalt in his system.
Moody went into the William Reid Stakes with two chances and the market preferred talented colt Kinglike, but Flamberge was given the perfect luck in running by jockey Brad Rawiller and he outfought a gallant Holler to record his second straight victory at Group 1 level.
The champion trainer had previously won the William Reid Stakes on two occasions with once in a generation equine superstar Black Caviar and he admits that Flamberge isn’t anywhere close to the great mares level, but he was still thrilled to record a final race win with one of the stables favourite horse.
“I had the joy of winning it with a special horse and this little bloke’s become pretty special too,” Moody said.
“I thought I’d reached a lot of highs with Black Caviar but to close it out like this tonight – that makes it impossible to come back because that can’t be bettered.
“He’s a remarkable little horse.
“It’s no secret he grew on us over a period of time.
“I didn’t see a big future in him but he just kept winning races.
“When he won The Goodwood we were over the moon, then he won an Oakleigh Plate and to do this tonight, it’s unbelievably special.
“It will stick with me for a while.
“It’s been an emotional day.”
Rawiller gave Flamberge an absolutely perfect ride, but he was extremely quick to divert attention away from himself and towards the retiring trainer.
A clearly emotional Rawiller said that it was a great honour to be able to win a final Group 1 for Moody and believes that he will look back on his William Reid Stakes victory as a career highlight.
“I’ve ridden in a lot of Group 1s and I can tell you why everyone is the best, but this one will live with me for a long time,” Rawiller said.
“Peter Moody is just an absolute legend and there is not one person is the racing industry that doesn’t look up to him.
“This is my second Group 1 winner for him and I can’t be happier for him.”
Canterbury Stakes winner Holler produced another very game effort to finish a close second and Japonisme was a close third, while Fast ‘N’ Rocking and The Quarterback both made up plenty of ground late from the tail of the field.