RACING: Mixed feelings for Charlton over Al Kazeem
BECKHAMPTON trainer Roger Charlton admitted to feeling "mixed emotions" after welcoming multiple Group One winner Al Kazeem back into training after he was found to be sub-fertile at stud.
The six-year-old was retired following a fantastic campaign in 2013, winning the Tattersalls Gold Cup at the Curragh, the Prince of Wales's Stakes at Royal Ascot and the Coral-Eclipse at Sandown.
After finishing sixth in the Prix de l'Arc de Triomphe in October, the son of Dubawi was bought by the Queen and syndicated among leading breeders to stand at the Royal Studs in Sandringham.
However, since beginning his stallion career earlier this year, he has failed to reach the required fertility levels and was the subject of an insurance claim.
Al Kazeem has now returned to Charlton's Beckhampton yard with a view to returning to the racecourse in the colours of former owner, John Deer.
Charlton said: "I have mixed emotions. I'm really sad, like everyone else, he has proved to be sub-fertile. He had great potential to make the grade as a stallion.
"On the other hand I am delighted to welcome him back into an environment he knows and now we now face the challenge of teaching him to be a racehorse again.
"Some horses adapt very well to going back into training and some don't, but it wasn't long ago he left the yard and he is a horse with a good personality.
"He was always a very sound horse and easy to train during his previous spell here, so we'll see how we go."
When asked when Al Kazeem could make a return to competitive action, the trainer said: "It's impossible to know. We have nothing planned at this stage."
MORE SPORTS NEWS & PICTURES IN THURSDAY'S GAZETTE & HERALD