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Only one man won a Group 2, then at Gundagai, then Taree, then fined - and finally suspended

Ric Chapman in Interviews 11 Apr 2016
  • Paul King can ride brilliantly
  • Irrespective, it seems of any venue.
Paul King weighing in last Saturday after winning on Two Blue.

What's that old saying....'gone from penthouse to the basement', or, I know, here's a better one...'from champ to chump in the twinkling of an eye'.

That last one probably best sums up the roller-coaster week Wyong-based jockey Paul King has had.

Last Saturday he was cock o'the hoop, but now...a feather duster, following the suspension handed down to him by Racing NSW stewards after his ride on CRAIGLEE WANDO at Randwick.

He was also fined $500 that afternoon, too, for excessive use of the whip prior to the 100m mark on the Queensland visitor who ran 4th at $51 in the Group 3 race.

But it didn't faze him.

We saw that when he came out in the last and led all the way in a $300,000 Group 2 race on his favourite horse TWO BLUE.

"I'm just so happy to have done it on the big stage and it helps when you have the cattle under you. This mare is just so full of heart," he said.

And what most people don't know is that the win very nearly didn't materialise. Two Blue's float did not arrive to pick her up from the stable on time, and drastic alternate measures to get her to Randwick, a two and a half hour drive, had to be hurriedly undertaken.

In the end, she got to the track on time, took her place in the field and ran them off their legs.

It was one of the biggest wins of King, known to his army of supporters as Peking Duck, or just The Duck's career.

Back in his homeland of Western Australia, years ago now, he won at Group 1 level.

But, that was a life time ago and now P. King is domiciled in NSW.

And what a week it has been for the Duck between last Saturday's unforgettable Randwick win and now.

The high-flying moments and accompanying high-fives from his great winning ride at Randwick, were sobered the very next day when he had to drive, yes, along the road to Gundagai.

To that very course.

He had been asked to take the book of rides that Kathy O'Hara had - following her severe fall at Randwick.

So the affable King obliged and trundled himself off to Gundagai, for a handful of lowly bush rides, just one day after Randwick.

And he left with the cash there too. He landed a double and rode a 3rd from his five pick-up rides.

Then on Monday, he took himself to Taree to ride three runners. Another long road trip to ride a couple of bush horses in low-key bush races.

And, yep again, he landed the chocolates and rode a 3rd.

And so that life will be for remainder of the week.... then it changes.

He will ride at Kembla next Saturday before commencing a holiday...a stewards imposed break.

They had originally outed him from earlier this week but when evidence was tendered that he had been booked for rides up to and including next Saturday, the Racing NSW amended his suspension dates saying: Please be advised that Racing NSW Stewards have acceded to a request to amend the terms of a careless riding suspension incurred at Royal Randwick on Saturday (9th April) for jockey Paul King, following advice that he has taken engagements at the Kembla Grange meeting this Saturday (16th April).
Consequently, Paul King’s licence to ride in races is now suspended for a period to commence on Sunday, 17th April 2016 and to expire on Thursday, 28th April 2016 on which day he may ride.

"It's been a big week. Last Saturday was special for a lot of people and if it gets me noticed, that would be great," he said.

No doubting the Duck has been noticed now.

Hope he has a great holiday.

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Only one man won a Group 2, then at Gundagai, then Taree, then fined - and finally suspended

Paul King, known as the Duck, won a $300,000 Group 2 race then drove his car to tiny Gundagai.

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