St. Jovite, Virginia Kraft Payson's homebred 1992 European Horse of the Year, died Jan. 9 at Michael Keogh's Baysax Manor Stud in The Curragh, Ireland, due to the infirmities of age. The son of Pleasant Colony produced from Broodmare of the Year Northern Sunset was 27.
Northern Sunset, third dam of 2002 champion 3-year-old filly and Kentucky Oaks (gr. I) winner Farda Amiga, was purchased by Payson for $105,000 while carrying Salem Drive, who went on to become Payson's first millionaire horse.
Kentucky-bred St. Jovite was campaigned in Europe and was voted champion 2-year-old in Ireland after winning two stakes. At 3, the colt won the Budweiser Irish Derby (Ire-I) at Curragh Racecourse in record time of 2:25.6 for 1 1/2 miles that has not been eclipsed. The racecourse last June honored St. Jovite for having raced the fastest Irish Derby in 150 years.
St. Jovite also defeated older horses at 3 in the King George VI and Queen Elizabeth Stakes (Eng-I) and was retired with a record of six wins and two placings in 11 starts.
Retired to stand at his owner's Payson Stud near Lexington, St. Jovite was relocated to Greentree Stud in Ireland in 2006 and retired to Keogh's farm in 2014.
St. Jovite was the sire of eight stakes winners and progeny that earned more than $7.5 million.