Melbourne Cup hero Protectionist may have run his last race after pulling up distressed following Saturday’s Sydney Cup, reports

Australian Bloodstock’s Jamie Lovett revealed on Racing Ahead that the German import is currently under observation in the Randwick Equine Centre after his disappointing run in the Group 1 and will undergo more tests on Wednesday.

“Hand on my heart - I don’t know (if he’s run his last race),” Lovett said. “I hope not.

“He’s in a bit of a bad way at the moment. He’s in a fair bit of pain.

“He’s not lame, but he’s not a happy horse. About the 800m mark he took a little dip and he fell apart - he just lost his action altogether. We just need to get to the bottom of it.

“Obviously we’re a little bit concerned at the moment going forward with what we’re dealing with.

“We’re just hopeful.”

Lovett admits Protectionist’s record hasn’t been flash this campaign, but was confident of a big run going into the Sydney Cup.

“We couldn’t have been happier going into the race, (after) his BMW run we were very happy going out to the two mile,” he said.

“Up until Saturday he hasn’t disappointed us. We’re just really hopeful we get to see the best of him.”