St Nicholas Abbey Dead

St Nicholas Abbey, a much-celebrated former champion, has died from colic. As previously covered, the 6-year-old Irish Thoroughbred underwent several procedures – which included 20 screws, 2 plates, a steel pin, and a bone graft – after breaking his pastern in July. All, in a cruel and shameful attempt to preserve him for breeding. And all, for naught. Not that more evidence is needed, but these comments from the Paulick Report lays bare, yet again, how delusional the racing “fan” truly is…

“Heartbreaking news. Condolences go out to everyone at Ballydoyle/Coolmore who moved heaven and earth to care for this magnificent champion.”

“As Shakespeare said (Hamlet) – ‘Now cracks a noble heart. Good-night, sweet prince; And flights of angles sing thee to thy rest.'”

“Utterly heartbreaking–much love and hugs to everyone at Coolmore, especially those who cared for St. Nick. My prayer, too, is that God someday wipes the scourge of laminitis and colic from this planet.”

“Bless his owners and all who gave him every humane chance to survive.”

“Tears and heartbreak. All my heart to this magnificent horses owners and all the people who took care of him and loved him.”

“Fly with the angels, handsome boy. I thank Coolmore for trying so very hard to save him, and I cry with all his fans and friends.”

“My condolences to Aidan and Joseph O’Brien, Coolmore, and everyone who loved and cared for St. Nicholas Abbey.”

“I feel as if I hit rock bottom with this news. …Sincere condolences to all those in his immediate circle and, to all the fans that loved him so, fondest memories.”

“I send my deepest sympathies and warmest hugs to everyone at Coolmore, especially Joseph and St. Nic’s lads.”

“Sadly, even today with so many impressive scientific and technological advances and accomplishments, men still have only limited power against grave injuries and the powerful, brutally humbling forces of nature especially when dealing with fragile horses.”

“Oh so sad – heartbreaking. Run free, precious St. Nicholas Abbey, in the Great Green Paddock.”


Wow. Where to start? First and foremost, the unbridled love, warm hugs, and deep gratitude are meant for St Nicholas’ final owner, Coolmore, the world’s largest Thoroughbred breeder. Surely, the grieving can’t be that naive. But beyond that, Shakespearean quotes, tears, “rock bottom,” God, angels, and “the Great Green Paddock”? In a word, repugnant.

Each year, thousands of pedestrian racehorses, many pumped full of drugs to mask debilitating pain, shatter bones while “competing” and are summarily destroyed. Each year, tens of thousands of former racehorses are hung upside down and bled-out in grisly abattoirs. For those, (virtually) no press, no outrage, no heartbreak. This, not the anomaly of SNA, is horseracing. Finally, to those who lament man’s “limited power against grave injuries” to “fragile horses,” we simply say, stop racing them. Stop racing them.

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  1. When I read the news of SNA’s euthanasia yesterday, I was not surprised. For all of the reports from Coolmore that he had been in ” terrific form”, one need know just the basics of equine anatomy, physiology, and “nature’s way”. This horse endured a shattered limb, colic surgery a mere 48 hours after the surgery to put that limb back together, and laminitis. Just ONE of those assaults on his body would have been the writing on the wall that he might not be long for this world. The manner in which SNA had to live in “recovery” from the orthopedic issues – day in and day out – was setting him up for another colic. And of course it did. They knew what he was up against, but again, there was profit to be had to keep him alive. I’m in no way saying to euthanize every racehorse that suffers an injury, but one as severe as SNA’s?…you are merely prolonging his suffering. And he suffered.
    When a celebrated horse such as SNA dies, one will typically read comments on a pro-racing forum such as those when Barbaro died, ie, “He (the dead horse) is flying above us, watching over those (racehorses) that still run”…are you demented?? While I want to believe there is a good place animals go when they die, to live finally unoppressed by man, I certainly hope the racehorses aren’t obliged to another occupation they never asked for! It’s not some dead racehorse that needs to protect those still laboring!
    St Nicholas Abbey, I am so sorry for all of the pain and suffering you endured at the hands of men. And I do hope you are somewhere, at last enjoying “life” as every horse should. RIP in that place.

  2. You are right Joy, that horse suffered a lot. In pictures one could see it in his eyes and his poor thin body covered with a blanket. I was lambasted by a pro racing group for mentioning this. MONEY is the driving force. Do the so called fans just have their heads in the sand or are they just stupid or maybe don’t really care about the horse ??

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