Old Vic, England’s 1989 Horse of the Year who went on to become a prominent National Hunt stallion, was euthanized Feb. 21 from complications from colic at Sunnyhill Stud in Co. Kildare, Ireland. Old Vic, who was 25, had resided at Sunnyhill since August 1996.
The year 1989 marked the emergence not only of Old Vic, who raced for Sheikh Mohammed, but of another star, Nashwan, campaigned by the Sheikh’s brother, Sheikh Hamdan. Old Vic that year won two classics, the Prix du Jockey Club Lancia (Fr-I, the French Derby) by seven lengths and the Budweiser Irish Derby (Ire-I), both under Steve Cauthen, as well as two English group III events.
The same year Nashwan also captured a pair of classics, the Ever Ready Epsom Derby (Eng-I) and the General Accident Two Thousand Guineas (Eng-I), and defeated older horses in both the King George VI and Queen Elizabeth Diamond Stakes (Eng-I) and the Coral-Eclipse Stakes (Eng-I).
In addition to being Horse of the Year, Old Vic (Sadler's Wells—Cockade, by Derring-Do) was a champion in France and Ireland. Nashwan was an English and a European highweight at 9 1/2 to 10 1/2 furlongs.
Old Vic also was a champion at 4, running second in the King George VI and Queen Elizabeth Diamond and third in the Hardwicke Stakes (Eng-II). He was retired with six wins from nine starts and earnings of $1,273,350. He was trained by Henry Cecil.
Old Vic, who was the top jump sire in the 2007-08 season, is represented by 34 stakes winners, including jumpers Don't Push It and Kicking King. Old Vic’s stakes winners as a broodmare sire include three German champions.
Old Vic was bred in Great Britain by Stowell Hill Ltd.