Since his much-heralded training comeback in 2020, Peter Moody’s name has appeared alongside more than $28.7 million worth of bloodstock at Australasian yearling sales.

However, it is rare for Moody’s name to feature in the seven-figure realm.

Our figures suggest it has happened just eight times across 664 purchases (1.2 per cent), but on Sunday at Karaka, he went higher than he ever has to secure a much-coveted Proisir filly for $NZ1.6 million, a record for any filly through the New Zealand Bloodstock Sale.

It is an interesting insight into Moody’s buying preferences that just 32.1 per cent of $1 million-plus yearlings sold in Australasia have been fillies, Moody’s own statistics in that regard are tipped 5-3 in favour of fillies.

The sister to Group 1 winner Prowess purchased on Sunday was Moody’s second $1 million-plus filly this month, having put his name alongside that of TFI and James Harron Bloodstock, to pay $1.4 million for a Snitzel filly from Segenhoe’s draft at the Magic Millions yearling sale on the Gold Coast.

The two purchases are far from a coincidence, and it is believed at least some of the parties involved with Moody on the Snitzel filly are part of the group to be involved with the most expensive Proisir ever sold.

Much in the same way that some trainers become renowned as ‘stallion-makers’ - in that they are given colts to train to turn them into stallion prospects - Moody, and his training partner Katherine Coleman, are becoming the go-to ‘mare-makers’, with a preference for training fillies unlike any other leading stable in the country.

Since he returned to training, eight of the top 11-priced yearling purchases featuring Moody’s name on the docket have been fillies. On the first day at Karaka, Moody signed for five horses and just one of them was a colt.

It follows what has been happening on the track. A look at the record of Moody and Coleman this season, their first in partnership, sees 28 of their 44 race wins by fillies or mares. Those fillies and mares have a 16 per cent winning strike rate, compared to 12.9 per cent for their colts and geldings.

The trend was even more pronounced last season when the stable was under Moody’s name only. In that campaign, 77 of Moody’s 120 wins came from fillies or mares (64.2 per cent). Those fillies and mares had a winning strike rate of 22.8 per cent, compared with 14.2 per cent from his colts and geldings.

Peter Moody's record with fillies and and mares since his 2020 comeback

Season Total winners F & M %
2023/24* 43 28 65.1%
2022/23 120 77 64.2%
2021/22 83 37 44.6%
2020/21 41 20 48.8%
2019/20 8 3 37.5%

*with Katherine Coleman

The pronounced trend carries through to stakes racing. During last season, Moody had 15 stakes victories, with 10 of them coming from his fillies or mares. Since he joined forces with Coleman this season, the pair have shared six black-type wins, all of them by fillies or mares.

Also significant is who owns those stakes-winning fillies. In the past 18 months, the Moody stable has trained stakes-winning fillies or mares for Arrowfield, Yulong, Rosemont and Kia Ora/TFI.

The biggest breeders in the country are putting their faith in Moody, and now Coleman, to elicit black-type winning potential out of their best-bred fillies, increasing their residual value significantly.

Karaka sale sets record pace as Moody goes to $1.6 million for Prowess’ sister
New Zealand Bloodstock’s National Yearling Sale got off to a record start on Sunday, with big jumps in both aggregate spend and the average price paid.

Of course, anyone with a cursory knowledge of Moody’s history knows his remarkable ability with mares.

Moody’s most famous association was with arguably Australia’s most famous mare, Black Caviar. But while she was the horse who catapulted Moody to prominence, she was far from the only filly or mare to shine for the stable.

There was also six-time Group 1 winner and Australian Horse of the Year Typhoon Tracy and Group 1 winners such as Ancient Song, Sky Cuddle and Cinque Cento.

But while in the first stage of his career, before he retired suddenly in 2016, 46.7 per cent of winners were from fillies or mares, in his comeback, he has become more and more reliant on them.

From May 2020 until now, Moody’s stable has had 296 wins, of which 165, or 55.7 per cent, have been won by fillies. When you consider that they represent 51.6 per cent of Moody’s overall runners since his comeback, you can see how the fillies and mares are overperforming.

You can also see why those looking to get the best out of their well-bred fillies and mares are keen to work with Moody and Coleman.

What we have yet to see since his comeback is Moody claim a Group 1 race with a filly or mare. You have to go back to Pasadena Girl in the 2015 Champagne Stakes for the last time that happened.