Lengthy spell on sidelines for injured Alkumait

Alkumait will be out of action until the autumn after suffering a chipped knee during his first race of the season at Newbury

Alkumait will be out of action until the autumn after suffering a chipped knee during his first race of the season at Newbury.

Last season's Mill Reef winner returned to the Berkshire circuit to tackle the Greenham Stakes but Angus Gold, racing manager for Shadwell Estate Company, admitted beforehand he had doubts about whether he would stay the seven-furlong trip.

Alkumait came in seventh and now doubts have been cast over his return following the injury

Gold said: "Sadly he's come out of it with a little chip on a knee, which we're going to have to take out.

"Apart from anything else, I think the run confirmed he doesn't stay, even if a chip on a knee was hardly going to help him.

"I think he's going to be a sprinter, but he'll miss the whole of the summer and we'll try to get him back in the autumn."

Alkumait was one of two Greenham runners for Shadwell along with the Charlie Hills-trained Mujbar.

Connections had hoped the Group Three winner could earn himself a shot at the Qipco 2000 Guineas with a bold showing, but he could now be bound for the French equivalent after finishing only eighth.

"All his best form last year was definitely with give in the ground and I think we learned the other day he would prefer it easier. He was also far too keen, anyway," Gold added.

"Hopefully we've got that out of him now on his first run back and we might look at the French Guineas or something like that.

"We'll see how he does between now and then, but he won't be going to Newmarket for the Guineas."

While Mujbar will not be contesting the first Classic of the season on Saturday week, the Shadwell team are still considering whether to supplement his stablemate Mutasaabeq, who was seriously impressive in a conditions race at Newmarket's Craven meeting.

Gold said: "No decision has been made yet. We'll wait to hear from Sheikh Hamdan's family whether they would like to supplement him for the Guineas or head towards (Royal) Ascot and go the more gentle route."

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