Jamie Lovett has paid tribute to Mugatoo as one of the best horses to carry his iconic Australian Bloodstock colours, following confirmation on Thursday that the All-Star Mile hero has been retired.

Lovett said his team, in conjunction with trainer Kris Lees, had decided to proactively call time on the gelding’s racing career, despite no obvious soundness issues with the eight-year-old.

Mugatoo missed the entire 2021/22 racing season with a tendon injury and was well beaten in his first-up run in Sydney earlier this month.

In a 22-start career across the UK and Australia, the son of Henrythenavigator banked more than $3.4 million in prizemoney courtesy of nine wins, including the Group 3 Newcastle Cup, Group 3 Premier’s Cup and Listed Canberra Cup.

His victory over Russian Camelot in the 2021 All-Star Mile at The Valley will long be remembered as one of the races of the decade.

“He’s going to enjoy a nice, lush paddock now,” Lovett said.

“There was nothing evident clinically with him, but we just weighed up the risk versus reward.

“He had a long 12 months of rehab and he was obviously disappointing the other day, so we thought he had nothing more to prove and if something happened to him, you’d be left with so many regrets.

“It’s sounds a bit selfish, but I judge them all by how much money they win for the owners – he ran fourth in a Cox Plate, fourth in a Doncaster and won an All-Star Mile, Newcastle Cup and Canberra Cup.

“He won three-and-a-half million (in prizemoney) – horses like him are very hard to find.

“He’s certainly up there with the better horses we’ve been fortunate enough to race.

“He’s been a great horse and we’ve loved the journey, but we turn the page and look for the next one now.”

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