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He’s the son of a champion trainer and the grandson of a legendary jockey.

And for the past few weeks he has been working hard at adding his family’s name to one of the few major honour rolls in Australian racing on which it doesn’t appear.

George Moore, the grandson of the jockey regarded as Australia’s greatest, has been supervising the local training of Caulfield and Melbourne Cups entrant Mighty High for his father John.

For a young man not long graduated from an American university, it is a weighty task.

But in a world where no name is more famous than his, he has become used to high expectations.

“There’s no doubt that my grandfather had a special place in racing here and around the world,” Moore said.

“But I see that as a benefit more than anything.”

The grandfather after whom Moore was named rode 2278 winners in a career that began in north Queensland in 1939 and ended at Flemington immediately after he won the 1971 Victoria Derby on Classic Mission.

Moore Snr also rode the winners of 119 races now classified as Group Ones and rode with distinction in France where he won such races as the Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe and French Derby as retained rider for Prince Aly Khan.

In the 1967 season in England, Moore won the Epsom Derby and the 2000 and 1000 Guineas and became renowned along with Scobie Breasley as the finest of Australia’s international riders.

Moore was Sydney’s champion jockey 10 times between 1957 and ’69, thanks largely to his often stormy partnership with Tommy Smith, who gave him the nickname Cotton Fingers for his gossamer touch on the reins.

But in his illustrious career Moore failed to win either the Caulfield or Melbourne Cups, a situation his son John and grandson George hope to rectify this spring.

The horse they are relying on is Mighty High, an English galloper formerly owned by the Aga Khan and one who has helped John Moore become the most successful trainer ever in Hong Kong where his runners have won more than $HK1 billion.

While his father has been supervising his team in Hong Kong, the preparation of Mighty High has been in the hands of his son who saddled the horse when he finished fourth in last weekend’s Caulfield Stakes.

“I’m aware of the record book as far as my grandfather was concerned in the Caulfield and Melbourne Cups and I know what it would mean to my Dad if we could win one of them,” George Moore said.

“We’ve taken horses all over the world – Australia, Dubai, Singapore, England – and we’ve run placings every time.

“We just want that first win.”

The gap in the family record book is naturally prominent in John Moore’s mind.

Mighty High is the first Caulfield Cup runner for the reigning champion trainer of Hong Kong who is confident the horse is capable of taking out it and the Melbourne Cup.

“It would be very nice to complete that part of the puzzle as far as the family heritage is concerned,” Moore said.

“The 2400 metres is his best distance, but I’m very confident he will run 3200.

“And I know the horse is cherry ripe, George has done a really good job with him.”


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