Jockey Paul King out to prove experience counts on Winter Stakes favourite Two Blue   Leave a comment

Jockey Paul King out to prove experience counts on Winter Stakes favourite Two Blue

July 17, 2015 – 6:50PM
King for a day: Paul King rides Two Blue to victory at Rosehill on June 27.King for a day: Paul King rides Two Blue to victory at Rosehill on June 27. Photo: Getty Images

You can’t buy experience, as Paul King will be the first to tell you. But it doesn’t necessarily generate opportunity in jockey ranks teaming with hungry twenty-somethings at the top of their game.

The elder statesman in the Rosehill riders’ room on Saturday might only pop in for a mount or two these days on the feature race day of the week.

The one he will head to Sydney’s west for this weekend, Winter Stakes favourite Two Blue, might just provide the kick-start he has been searching for on this side of the continent.

It is easy to forget King’s status at the top of the pile in Perth, the city where he forged a name for himself while racking up three group 1 wins in between countless winners.

Sydney? The 18 months he has spent here were initially plagued by a stint out of the saddle thanks to a broken kneecap – and then the harsh reality of how hard it is to establish a foothold in the ultra-competitive riding market.

“Riding a group 1 winner anywhere in Australia is great,” King said. “They’re all hard to win and none of them are easy – especially in WA, as we don’t have a lot.

“We only have three group 1s a year [in Perth], but just riding a normal Saturday winner in Sydney is a great thrill. And to get a stakes win would be massive. You’ve got to make the most of the opportunities when you get them. It would be nice to ride a stakes winner and it just helps the progression with other trainers.”

Closing in on 100 NSW wins since setting up base on the eastern seaboard – King even warmed up for the Winter Stakes card with a dash to Scone on Friday – there are few regrets at this stage. But netting a first black-type success on this side of Australia – for rider and Two Blue – would be one to cherish for a while.

King only rode his first Sydney winner in January when Gai Waterhouse plumped for the veteran on Flamboyant Lass in a two-year-old race as the big boys flocked north for Magic Millions day.

And having missed Two Blue’s narrow Civic Stakes defeat last start when he had already committed to ride free-wheeling stayer Lovethebeaches in the Queensland Cup, King will be back aboard for the Winter Stakes.

“It wasn’t hard [to watch] as I was actually cheering her on,” King joked. “And you want to see them run a good race, especially when you’re back on next race.

“There’s nothing worse than watching a horse go around and it runs average and you think, ‘what’s gone wrong there?’ It would have been nice to see her get a black-type win next to her name, but she’s placed now and it adds a bit more value to her when she does retire.”

Bookmakers have had no hesitation in predicting Two Blue can turn the tables of Civic Stakes conqueror Haussmann, with Ladbrokes listing her a firming $4.20 favourite on Friday evening as the rain continued to tumble in Sydney.

Chris Waller’s You’ll Never, tipped to be the leading hope of a three-strong hand for Sydney’s premier trainer, was the second favourite at $5. But King remained bullish about Two Blue’s chances on a muddy Rosehill track given her front-running racing pattern.

“I don’t think there’s an issue with 1400 [metres],” King said. “She’s won over further at 1500 [metres], she likes a wet track, she’s a kilo off the minimum and she’s drawn a nice gate. And being up on the speed it’s going to be a massive advantage compared to most of the other runners.”

Waterhouse has ironically booked King for Carriages, well beaten in the Gold Coast’s $2 million scamper, when the filly resumes at Rosehill on Saturday. “She’s working really well and the one thing about her is you know she’s going to be forward in the run,” King said.

“She’s pretty fit and the only downfall with her tomorrow is the heavy track. She’s a real daisy-cutting type of horse so it will be interesting to see if she can get through the conditions.”

Read more:


Posted July 18, 2015 by belesprit09 in Uncategorized

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: