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Back to drawing board with Ektihaam; RACING.

IT IS back to the drawing board for connections of Ektihaam after he was well-beaten under champion jockey Paul Hanagan after being badly hampered in a rough race in the the Prix du Jockey Club.

The King Edward VII Stakes at Royal Ascot is still a possible target, although the colt could be given a short holiday if the unsuccessful trip to Chantilly has taken a lot out of him. Ektihaam, trained by Roger Varian, had gone for the extended 10-furlong Group One contest on the back of finishing second to Bonfire in the Dante Stakes.

"It was the boring bit for everybody that no-one learnt anything. It was such a rough race. Paul (Hanagan) said in all his days riding it was the roughest race he'd ever been in," said Angus Gold, racing manager to owner Sheikh Hamdan Al Maktoum. "Over that trip at Chantilly it was too many runners. It's not for me to tell people what to do, but I think they have to address that. A lot of people never got a run and we are going into the middle of the season not knowing what we've got.

"We learnt nothing at all. He just got murdered so many times Paul left him alone, so we've got to go back to the drawing board and start again.

"We'll have to have a think and see how he comes out of it. We were thinking of him as an Ascot horse if we didn't go to France. If he happened to come out of it absolutely bouncing and in great form we'd still have that option.

"There's every chance we'll have to give him a bit of a break."
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Title Annotation:Sport
Publication:Liverpool Echo (Liverpool, England)
Date:Jun 5, 2012
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