Trainer Roger Varian has revealed stable star Defoe was fatally injured on the gallops on Wednesday morning.
Defoe's death is the second major blow for Varian's stable in less than a week, with Royal Ascot hero Mountain Angel also suffering a fatal injury last week.
Varian trained Defoe to nine career victories, with his last coming at Ascot last June.
His last outing was on June 19, when he finished third when defending his Hardwicke crown. Defoe had been due to run in the L'Ormarins Queen's Plate Glorious Stakes at Goodwood on Friday, but Varian's team have confirmed their sad loss.
A statement on his website read: "We regret to announce that Group One winner Defoe suffered a fatal injury on the gallops this morning.
"It is probably not a safe assumption that only those who were closely connected with the horse will be heartbroken that he has left this life.
"Although not large in stature, Defoe had the heart of a lion and his adoring fans from around the world will no doubt join us in mourning his loss and celebrating his achievements."
Article Posted on Wednesday 29th July 2020 @ 15.51
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