Photo: Eclipse Sportswire
St Nicholas Abbey's brave battle against a continuous injury onslaught was drawn to a close on Tuesday as the seven year old was euthanized after suffering a second bout of colic.
The progress of St Nicholas Abbey throughout his long battle had become a permanent fixture amongst the international racing news in months gone by, and with each passing month the updates on this star son of Montjeu seemed to fluctuate in the level of positivity exuded.
On Tuesday the announcement was made that St Nicholas Abbey had suffered from a second, more severe bout of colic which required Coolmore to make the decision to euthanize the six-time Group 1 winner on humane grounds.
"Regretfully, St Nicholas Abbey has lost his brave battle after suffering a colic this morning," said a Coolmore Press Release. "This is extremely unfortunate as St Nicholas Abbey had been in terrific form, the laminitis was resolving well and the fracture had healed better than expected."
Two of the most notable victories of St Nicholas Abbey's tenure amongst the very best of the international thoroughbreds came at Churchill Downs, where he created history as Joseph O'Brien powered him to victory in the 2011 Breeders' Cup Turf, and in the 2013 Dubai Sheema Classic at Meydan where he laughed in the face of the strong opposition that the subsequent Japan Cup victor, Gentildonna, provided as he blessed the desert-based venue with sublime performance of authority. However, St Nicholas Abbey's reputation will live long in the memory for his trio of victories in the Coronation Cup at Epsom, a race which he made his own after missing a deserved shot in The Derby at Epsom due to injury. A treble of exciting victories, which showed the versatility of the running styles stored in this stunning thoroughbred's locker, epitomised the qualities of St Nicholas Abbey who battled to regain his place amongst the elite after being all but written off after missing the majority of his Classic season campaign.
During his perilous convalescence St Nicholas Abbey had shown much of the bravery and courage that he had displayed on the course, and with that mind the passing of St Nicholas Abbey after such a determined display in attempting to reign supreme in his final battle hurts more than many can imagine.
It is somewhat fitting, however, that St Nicholas Abbey will now take his place - somewhat prematurely - alongside Sadler's Wells and his father Montjeu at the private graveyard at Coolmore.