03/21/2017 7:39AM

Fever forces Imperial Hint to scratch from Dubai Golden Shaheen

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Jim McCue/Maryland Jockey Club
General George Stakes winner Imperial Hint developed a fever after arriving in Dubai.

DUBAI, United Arab Emirates - Trainer Luis Carvajal confirmed Tuesday that Imperial Hint has been scratched from the $2 million Dubai Golden Shaheen on the Dubai World Cup card Saturday. High On Life has taken his spot in the race, which has a full field of 14 with post positions to be drawn Wednesday.

Imperial Hint has improved markedly in recent months and was invited to the Golden Shaheen on the strength of his convincing last-out win in the Grade 3 General George at Laurel Park. He and Stallwalkin' Dude, another Shaheen starter, left for Dubai on Wednesday from John F. Kennedy Airport in New York after a snowstorm prevented them from travelling to Florida to ship with the other East Coast-based horses from Florida.

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Imperial Hint developed a fever the day after arriving in Dubai, and while the fever was short-lived, Carvajal said, Imperial Hint never could shake his illness. Something was amiss with his blood count, and an ultrasound performed late Monday afternoon revealed a small amount of fluid on his right lung. That discovery put an end to Imperial Hint's chances of making the Golden Shaheen.

"We've already started treatment so he can be healthy to go back home," Carvajal said Tuesday.