Top Aidan O'Brien horse Dylan Thomas has been barred from taking part in this Sunday's lucrative Japan Cup -- a race that was supposed to mark the finale of his career before being retired to stud.
The Japanese Racing Association (JRA) is apparently unhappy that he has been vaccinated against Equine Viral Arteritis (EVA).
It seems a peculiar decision and O'Brien was apparently mystified having, he said, previously run horses in the race that have also had the EVA vaccination.
"Dylan Thomas was vaccinated for EVA at the Breeders' Cup in Monmouth, New Jersey," said O'Brien In a statement issued by his stables in Ballydoyle last night.
"This is a standard procedure for all stallions going to stud as it is in the best interest of the stallion and mare owner.
"Many of our stallions in the past have entered Japan with the EVA vaccination before entering stud.
"The Hong Kong Jockey Club, aware of our problem, have extended an invitation to Dylan Thomas to run in the (Group One) Vase at Sha Tin on Sunday 9 December.
"We hope that the Japanese Racing Association (JRA) will release him in time to run."
WHILE most eyes in racing this weekend will be on the Betfair Chase at Haydock Park, a race that could be pivotal in sorting out any readjustments at the top of end of the staying chase brigade, Philip Hobbs' will be very much focused on the Ascot Hurdle, a little earlier.
At Ascot, the grey Detroit City makes his long-awaited reappearance against a number of up-and-coming hurdlers and the reliable former dual Champion, Hardy Eustace.
The pair were first and second in the Boylesports Hurdle at Cheltenham last December, when Detroit City was on a roll. He had already won the Cesarewitch on the Flat and the Greatwood Hurdle and was on his way to beating Straw Bear at Sandown and hot-favouritism for the Champion Hurdle.
But at Cheltenham and Aintree he looked none too keen and he was off the bridle for Richard Johnson almost from the start.
He has had a long summer holiday and has undergone a wind operation and received treatment for both a back problem and stomach ulcers.
"Hopefully it has put him back on track," said Hobbs.(© Daily Telegraph, London).