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King Pulse in the news

Herald Sun, Adrian Dunn

KING Pulse makes his comeback in Saturday's Lightning Stakes at Flemington, where his career almost ended last March.

King Pulse was a victim of the lightning, thunder, hail and torrential rain that lashed the racecourse moments after the Newmarket Handicap.

Terrified, King Pulse broke loose from his strapper and became stuck in a confined space between two running rails where, in a wild panic, he thrashed about before being rescued.

King Pulse was taken to the Werribee Veterinary Clinic, where it was discovered the then three-year-old had a hairline fracture to a shoulder blade, a dropped hip, several cuts below a knee and a chunk of flesh missing from his bottom lip.

Staff relayed the shocking news to trainer Mike Moroney, who was in New Zealand.

"Vets told me it was very, very bad. They did think they were injuries that might have stopped him from racing," Moroney said.

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"There were times that we didn't know if he would come back. The vets did a great job and he had a great rehab. We've taken a step at a time and he's bounced through each step.

"Right from day dot his action has been fine."

King Pulse could not have struck a more daunting first-up start - against the world's best sprinter, Black Caviar, in the 1000m Lightning.

Moroney has conceded the Group 1 to Black Caviar.

He said it took a special horse to be unbeaten in nearly two years at the elite level.

So why the Lightning?

"Originally, I was going to kick him off in the 1200m race, but I was a bit worried it would be too far for him and with him being off the scene for such a long time, so we thought 1000m would suit him better," Moroney said.

"It's the right distance for him as we want to run him in the Newmarket (March 12) second-up."

Under the Lightning's weight-for-age conditions, King Pulse's challenge is even tougher.

"It would be awfully hard to do (cause an upset)," Moroney said. "Under handicap situation we would be at least six kilos better off.

"We know he's got to find improvement from his three-year-old form and we think he's more mature and hope under race-day pressure that the injuries he suffered won't catch up with him.

"If he could finish in the first four and run within a couple of lengths of the mare (Black Caviar), it would be great."

[16 Feb 11]


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