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St Nicholas Abbey - Epsom 01/06/2013

St Nicholas Abbey (right): was last seen winning his third Coronation Cup

  PICTURE: Getty Images  

St Nicholas Abbey has come through surgery

ST NICHOLAS ABBEY has come through a lengthy surgery to fuse his pastern and is recuperating in intensive care at John Halley's Fethard Equine Hospital.

He faces a long recovery but on Thursday morning was described as comfortable.

"St Nicholas Abbey will remain in intensive care for some time and has many bridges to cross before he is considered out of danger," said Coolmore in a statement released via their Twitter feed @coolmorestud.

"This morning he is well and comfortable and back enjoying his hay. We are lucky he is so fit and has a marvellous attitude and temperament, which will be vital for his long recovery."

The surgery was carried out in consultation with Dr Dean Richardson, head of surgery at New Bolton Centre Pennsylvania, along with Ger Kelly and Tom O'Brien.

The six-year-old suffered his life-threatening injury during a routine piece of work at Ballydoyle on Tuesday morning as he was going through his final preparation for Saturday's King George VI and Queen Elizabeth Stakes at Ascot.

Trained by Aidan O'Brien for Derrick Smith, John Magnier and Michael Tabor, St Nicholas Abbey had won both his starts this year, landing the Dubai Sheema Classic on World Cup Night at Meydan, then following up in the Coronation Cup on Derby day, a race he was winning for a record-breaking third time.

Victory in Saturday's race would have been a seventh at Group 1 level for St Nicholas Abbey, who amassed nearly £5 million in total prize-money as Europe's all-time leading money-earner, winning nine of his 21 starts.

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