David Hayes’ Classic Series hopes have been decimated after a horror 24 hours wiped Fantastic Treasure and Helene North Star from contention.

Fantastic Treasure, who was one of the favourites for Sunday week’s HK$12 million Classic Mile, hurt his lower leg after a gallop on Wednesday morning, ruling him out of the lucrative four-year-old series.

Things only got worse from there when Helene North Star, a British import who connections were hopeful of running in March’s Hong Kong Derby, got free of his mafoo during a swim and was involved in a freak accident the same day.

The double blow is a bitter pill to swallow for the Australian Hall of Fame trainer.

Blake Shinn trials Fantastic Treasure at Happy Valley last month.

“I had a very flat day [on Wednesday],” Hayes said.

“Fantastic Treasure did his piece of work getting ready for a trial – just easy – and he must’ve whacked [himself]. He’s got an early splint forming, which is not a long-term big problem, but it’s a catastrophe for the four-year-old series.

“You can push on but my experience tells me, with a classy horse on firm ground, you don’t need to be pushing it. It’s very sore while it’s forming and once they’re formed, they’re fine. But the timing couldn’t be worse.

“Helene North Star unfortunately had a nasty accident. He got loose in the pool, he slipped running free, smashed his knee and had to be euthanised, which was devastating.

“I know he hadn’t shown his form in Hong Kong yet but I was sure he was going to develop into a very good stayer. Some of the trackwork and trials he had done were exceptional.”

Blake Shinn wins a trial on Helene North Star at Sha Tin earlier this month.

The injury to Fantastic Treasure means the stable has just one runner left in the Classic Mile in Lucky With You, but Hayes is confident the son of Written Tycoon will overcome this obstacle in the long run.

“He’ll be ready for the end of the season,” he said. “He’d been set for the series, we stopped him early last season, his lead-up race was great, he hadn’t missed a beat at trackwork and this happens. I know it’s a very good race this year but I was pretty confident he’d be in the first three.”

In these tough situations, winners are one of the few salves and if Super Wealthy could claim Sunday’s Group One Centenary Sprint Cup (1,200m), it would help ease the pain.

The six-year-old has been exceptional this season since joining Hayes’ yard, winning the Group Three National Day Cup (1,000m) in October, running second in the Group Two Premier Bowl (1,200m) and then finishing third in the Group Three Bauhinia Sprint Trophy (1,000m) earlier this month.

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He only finished three-quarters of a length behind boom sprinter Master Eight in that most recent run and meets Frankie Lor Fu-chuen’s rising star 13 pounds better, so on weights and measures he has to be in the mix.

“He hasn’t run a poor race this season and we missed the international to have him right for these races,” Hayes said. “Hopefully a little bit of patience is going to pay off.”

For the owners of Helene North Star, they can also enjoy some redemption on Sunday through Helene Allibor, who lines up in the Class Three Seasons Bloom Handicap (2,000m).

The four-year-old, who won the Group Two Sandown Guineas in Australia pre-import, had been racing well before putting in a flat effort last time out.

Super Wealthy (left) rattles home to finish third to Master Eight (blue silks) in the Group Three Bauhinia Sprint Trophy.

Hayes is prepared to forgive that performance and is hopeful he can bounce back with a different strategy from barrier 13.

“We made a tactical error last start, we drove him forward because it didn’t look like there was much pace,” Hayes said. “So what we’re going to do is let him relax early from that awkward gate and join in late.”