FORMER Queensland apprentice Matthew Chadwick completed a meteoric rise to the senior jockey ranks in Hong Kong on Sunday – but there was a down-side when he copped a double suspension.

Alan Aitken reports in the South China Morning Post that the star young rider completed his fairytale apprenticeship in record time – taking one year and three weeks to boot home 70 winners, outride his claim and graduate as a senior jockey.

Here in the SCMP report:

‘Chadwick’s 70th winner is not one he is likely to forget - in the short term at least - because despite winning the race on Multiglory, he was handed a two-meeting suspension for careless riding.

Stewards then extended his time on the sidelines after the last race and outed him for a further two meetings for careless riding aboard Great Heart, which caused interference to King Al Akbar.

“It was unfortunate that I have been suspended, but that's racing and it’s just another day really,” Chadwick said.

“It is good that I’ve finished my apprenticeship, but I plan to continue what I have been doing and I am looking forward to the challenge of working on my own.

“Hopefully I will still have the support of Tony Cruz and I’ve had support in the past from other trainers, too, so I just need to build on those relationships and make sure I’m still getting the rides.

“Because I still get the three-pound claim, I don’t think it will be too much of a disadvantage to drop down from five pounds, if I ride the horse well enough it will still win,” he added.

There is no comparison to the speed with which Chadwick has attacked his career. Howard Cheng held the previous record for the quickest graduation with a benchmark of over two years.

“It's a great achievement by Matthew,” his allocated trainer Tony Cruz said. “I didn't feel like I lost him today - he will still have first call on all my horses.”

Chadwick will be hoping to use that first-call on Cruz’s horses in the coming weeks after having his suspension deferred until after the Champions Mile meeting in which Cruz has ‘four or five horses’ gunning for the feature Group One race.

He will commence his suspension on January 25 and will be able to return to the saddle on February 8.

“He's graduated but he's also got two suspensions for careless riding and I hope Matthew learns from his mistakes,” Cruz said. “As a jockey you’re always learning from these mistakes, incidents that lead to suspension, and well, you make sure you don’t let it happen next time, you learn and correct yourself.

“It's a learning game, the more races you ride, the more knowledge you have and the more confidence you should get.”

Both Cruz and Chadwick will take plenty of confidence from the win of Multiglory, who burned off his rivals with a sizzling burst down the straight to claim the Class Four 1,000m race in a time of 57.02 seconds - just a fraction slower than the Group Three feature over the same course, which Craig's Dragon won in a time of 56.61 seconds.

“I'm very happy with Multiglory, he’s an improving young horse, only three years old and I think there will be more to see from him,” Cruz said.

Chadwick echoed the trainer's views and thinks there may be improvement yet to come from the talented speedster.

“He trialled well and Tony actually trained his father [Group One winner King Of Danes] and he has always shown a lot of speed,” he said. “He is still green and once he builds up in strength, he will mature into a nice horse.”

Chadwick and Cruz completed their double in the next race with Cat Storm.

“Full marks must go to Matthew for this win,” Cruz said. “This horse drew outside and he hasn’t been a good starter, so when he was slow away today Matthew went back and got him across to the inside and was able to creep up the rail. It was a good ride and he stayed out of trouble on that one.”

The suspension may not be all bad news for Chadwick, who without the trackwork commitments of an apprentice, may follow in his senior counterpart’s footsteps and take the opportunity for a quick holiday.

STORY COURTESY OF ALAN AITKEN AND THE SOUTH CHINA MORNING POST

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