Named for a 17th century mansion in Barbados, St. Nicholas Abbey sold for $366,765 as a yearling at the 2008 Tattersall’s October Yearling Sale. The son of Montjeu was highly-touted as a two year old, and rightly so, as he was undefeated in three starts, including the G1 Racing Post Trophy at Doncaster.
He made only one start at three, finishing a sixth as favorite in the 2,000 Guineas at Newmarket. But his four-year-old year was much better, as he won the Ormonde Stakes and Coronation Cup, where he beat 2009 Breeders’ Cup Filly & Mare Turf winner Midday.
He capped off the year by taking the G1 Breeders’ Cup Turf, notable not only by his big run from midpack to score by two and a quarter lengths, but because the victory made jockey Joesph O’Brien the youngest rider to capture a Breeders’ Cup race. He was 18 years, five months old at the time – five months younger than Fernando Jara was when he won the 2006 Classic with Invasor.