Flemington trainer Mark Kavanagh will still use the services of Michael Rodd when needed even though the pair have decided to go their separate ways.
Rodd has been stable rider for Kavanagh for six years with the duo combining to win numerous Group 1 races but an amicable split will see Rodd ride free lance in the future.
“It’s got to be stressed that we’re still good friends, there is no problem whatsoever. Michael just thought he’d pursue this direction and I have no problems with him. In fact, he rode for me at Geelong on Wednesday,” Kavanagh told The Age.
“We’ve had a great association but Michael feels that going out on his own will be beneficial for him. It basically means, at the end of the day, he’s not committed to the stable and we’re not committed to him. Of course that won’t mean I won’t be using him.
“We’ve had a great friendship and that will continue. We’ve had some fabulous moments and I was quite flattered all those years ago when Michael came and joined my stable.”
In recent times Rodd and Kavanagh combined to win eight races with glamour mare Atlantic Jewel, including four at Group 1 level.
In an injury plagued career, Atlantic Jewel was only beaten once by It’s A Dundeel in the last year’s Group 1 $400,000 Hyland Race Colours Underwood Stakes (1800m) at Caulfield on September 21.
But Rodd was able to steer the great mare to four Group 1 wins in the 2011 $500,000 Thousand Guineas (1600m) at Caulfield, the 2012 $400,000 All Aged Stakes (1400m) at Randwick, and the 2013 $350,000 Memsie Stakes (1400m) and the $400,000 Caulfield Stakes (2000m) both at Caulfield.
Rodd also combined with Kavanagh to win last year’s Group 1 $1m Darley Australian Cup (2000m) at Flemington with three year old Super Cool as well as the 2011 Group 1 $500,000 Turnbull Stakes (2000m) at Flemington on December Draw and the 2008 $3m Cox Plate (2040m) at Moonee Valley, one of three Group 1s with Maldivian.