Melbourne Cup hopeful Alcopop has had his spring campaign ended after the horse was found to have sustained a slab fracture in his near-fore knee.
The injury, which is likely to require surgery, is believed to have occurred during the gelding’s last start Caulfield Stakes run.
Trainer Jake Stephens ordered thorough veterinary exams on Alcopop after he finished an uncharacteristic last in the race.
The bone fracture is expected to force Alcopop into the paddock for several months, with the seven-year-old unlikely to make another appearance until next spring.
Stephens immediately realised there was something wrong with Alcopop, who was 18th in the order of entry for this year’s Melbourne Cup, following his Caulfield Stakes failure.
“We knew he wasn’t right, especially after his last,” Stephens said.
“When he ran like he did at Caulfield, you know there had to be problem.
“(The vet) said some horses would be very lame, but even a trot you can’t really tell with him his pain threshold is so high.”
Alcopop has won nine of his 26 career starts and has earned more than $620,000 in prize money.
This year was due to be Alcopop’s second Melbourne Cup after the Jeune gelding ran sixth in 2009.