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December Draw’s Caulfield Cup failure has been explained by a fracture in one of the horse’s hind legs.

The Mark Kavanagh-trained December Draw was favourite for Saturday’s Caulfield Cup won by Southern Speed but finished last of the 18 runners after being eased out of the race by Michael Rodd.

An initial examination on raceday did not find anything wrong but the morning after the problem was detected.

Kavanagh told stewards on Sunday the gelding had been diagnosed with a fracture to the lateral splint bone in the off hind leg.

December Draw is likely to be sidelined until next spring.

The former European has won five of his seven Australian starts including the Group One Turnbull Stakes (2000m) at Flemington and the Group Three Naturalism Stakes (2000m) at Caulfield.

It was the second Caulfield Cup disappointment for Kavanagh who had the raging favourite Maldivian four years ago.

Maldivian was dramatically withdrawn from the race after cutting himself on piece of camera equipment inadvertently left attached to his barrier.

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