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Derby winner Masar retired to stud after failing to hit Epsom heights

Masar, who last year became the first horse to win the Derby carrying the famous blue silks of Godolphin, has been retired to join the Darley stallion roster, trainer Charlie Appleby revealed on Tuesday.

Masar, photo Liesl King

The son of New Approach, who gave Appleby his first domestic Classic win when overcoming Dee Ex Bee, Roaring Lion and Kew Gardens under William Buick, has failed to match that form in two starts since returning from injury last month.

After finishing an honourable fifth in the Group 2 Hardwicke Stakes at Royal Ascot on his return, Masar came home last of six in the Group 2 Princess Of Wales's Stakes at Newmarket last Thursday.

Appleby said: "First and foremost, Masar has come out his Newmarket race well but after deep discussions with his highness Sheikh Mohammed we have decided to do what's right for the horse and retire him.

"He gave us all an amazing day when winning the Investec Derby, when he was the first to win it in the blue colours and gave me my first domestic Classic win as a trainer. Before that, he had run out a high-class winner of both the Solario and the Craven Stakes." 

He added: "Masar will be sorely missed at Moulton Paddocks but he will be joining another great performer of ours, Blue Point, on the Darley stallion roster in the near future."

Much discussion over the possible retirement of Masar was made at last week's July festival at Newmarket but connections gave it a few days to let the dust settle before making a call.

Appleby said of the four-year-old, who was ridden out most days at home by Brett Doyle: "We would have been chasing our tail with the horse through the rest of the season and he owes us nothing. He achieved the pinnacle of British racing in winning the Derby and his form was high-class from two to three. To come back from the injury he had showed immense courage and all at Godolphin are very proud to be associated with him."

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