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St Nicholas Abbey - Epsom 01/06/2013St Nicholas Abbey recording his record-breaking win in the Coronation Cup   PICTURE: Getty Images  

St Nicholas Abbey set
for 'critical' surgery

ST NICHOLAS ABBEY will undergo surgery on Wednesday morning in an attempt to save his life after the multiple Group 1 winner suffered a career-ending injury on Tuesday.

He spent a "comfortable night" in Fethard Equine Hospital, Coolmore Stud, representing the colt's owners, tweeted on Wednesday. "Today will be critical for him," they added.

The six-year-old suffered a fractured pastern 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, a race for which Europe's all-time leading money-earner had been expected to be favourite.

Coolmore tweeted: "St Nicholas Abbey suffered a serious career ending injury at Ballydoyle this morning, vets are currently attending to him. We hope to save him for a career at stud."

Later updates added: "St Nicholas Abbey is currently in a comfortable condition at Fethard Equine Hospital, where he is scheduled for surgery tomorrow morning.

"The operation to stabilise and repair will be long and complicated - we will need a bit of luck, so fingers crossed for St Nicholas Abbey."

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, winning nine of his 21 starts.

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