HAPPIER TIMES: Albury trainer Brett Cavanough, chiropractor Mick Bryant and Peter Moody in the United Kingdom for Black Caviar’s race at Royal Ascot in 2012.

David Johnston, The Border Mail

ALBURY trainer Brett Cavanough has reluctantly been forced to let go 12 staff members in response to the long-term ban imposed on close mate, Peter Moody.

The staff who have departed in recent days were employed by Cavanough to pre-train horses for Moody, who has been outed for six months for cobalt use.

Moody has walked away from racing with his exile eliminating a $750,000 per annum business from the Cavanough operation in Albury.

An estimated $500,000 was absorbed in costs and wages, but the move is a major setback for the city’s leading trainer, who will continue training his team of horses in the short to medium term.

Cavanough has also shut a 30-horse barn he used to accommodate horses he pre-trained for Moody.

“Our core business was breaking in and pre-training for Peter Moody,” Cavanough said.

“We do it for a few others, but he was obviously a very big client.

“When you cut your business in half you never know what is going to happen do you?

When you cut your business in half you never know what is going to happen do you?- Brett Cavanough

“The flow effect of whether we can go forwards, backwards or hold our ground is something we will have to wait and see what happens.”

Cavanough said some of the staff he was forced to let go were university students who relied on some income to help with their studies.

He said the looming Albury track renovation wouldn’t impact on preparing his team of horses.

“You can prepare horses on the sand here,” he said.

Cavanough and Moody have been lifetime mates who grew up together in Queensland. Cavanough travelled with Moody to Royal Ascot in 2012 when superstar sprinter Black Caviar scored a courageous win in the Diamond Jubilee Stakes.

Black Caviar – who only raced three more times after her Royal Ascot triumph and retired with 25 successive wins – was broken in by Cavanough.

Cavanough has a runner in the $400,000 NSW Country Championships final at Randwick on Saturday in Steakandbearnaise.

“It will obviously be a very tough race,” he said.

“We’ve been there before, but whether he has got the class or not at this point remains to be seen.

“Two years ago he looked like being a good horse, but he is just making his way back from injury.”