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Hathras, the imported horse which less than two years ago was probably the best stayer in Kris Lees’ stable and rated one of the most promising in Sydney, is heading for an early retirement.

Lees, who now counts Melbourne Cup winner Protectionist and Caulfield Cup placegetter Lucia Valentina as stars of his Newcastle yard, wants to call an end to Hathras’ career after the six-year-old was a dismal failure at Canterbury on Wednesday.

“The recommendation is to retire the horse but they are going to consult with the owners,” acting chief steward Greg Rudolph said.

Racing midfield, Hathras finished a distant last to Another Charger in the TAB Rewards Handicap as a $5 chance.

The result continued a succession of heavy defeats for the horse owned in the same interests as Protectionist and his form is a long way from the impression he made in the early stages of his Australian career.

Winning at his second start for Lees, Hathras then emerged as one of the favourites to win the BMW on the strength of a nine-length victory at his third outing after arriving from Germany.

He was beaten less than three lengths when seventh to Fiveandahalfstar in the BMW before his 2013 autumn ended when midfield in a lead-up race to the Sydney Cup.

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