The extent of the injury suffered by Buveur D'Air in the Fighting Fifth Hurdle will be assessed over the next two days after the dual Champion Hurdle winner returned to Nicky Henderson's Lambourn yard on Saturday night following his defeat at Newcastle.
After finishing second to Cornerstone Lad in the Grade 1, Barry Geraghty immediately dismounted Buveur D'Air and explained his mount, who hit the second-last flight, had a splinter of wood in the lower section of his off fore.
Asked about the horse's conditions two hours after the race, owner JP McManus' racing manager Frank Berry said: "He is on his way home and the vets are going to look at him in the morning. We'll know more in the next day or two."
Geraghty has partnered the eight-year-old on 12 of his last 14 starts, and added after the race: "He picked up a little cut on his coronary band, just between the hoof and the hair. He's sore, so he's gone to the vet's box and we'll see how he is. It only came to evidence when I came back in.
"I was happy through the race and I thought I'd win jumping the last but he just struggled in the last 100 yards. It's disappointing to be beaten but the winner was good, he did it the hard way. I thought we'd come and beat him and we couldn't."
Buveur D'Air's Champion Hurdle odds drifted to a top-priced 10-1 (from 6-1) and asked for his reaction at Newbury, Henderson said: "I have none at all at the moment.
"The other horse got away and he had a fair bit of ground to make up and he nearly got there – but he didn't."