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Giant's Causeway (horse)

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Giant's Causeway
SireStorm Cat
GrandsireStorm Bird
DamMariah's Storm
CountryUnited States
BreederOrpendale and Michael Tabor
OwnerSue Magnier and Michael Tabor
TrainerAidan O'Brien
Record13: 9–4–0
Major wins
Futurity Stakes (1999)
Prix de la Salamandre (1999)
Gladness Stakes (2000)
St. James's Palace Stakes (2000)
Eclipse Stakes (2000)
Sussex Stakes (2000)
Juddmonte International Stakes (2000)
Irish Champion Stakes (2000)
Cartier Horse of the Year (2000)
Leading sire in North America (2009, 2010, 2012)
Leading broodmare sire in North America (2018)
Timeform rating: 132
Giant's Causeway Stakes at Keeneland (2006– )
Last updated on 23 February 2024

Giant's Causeway (14 February 1997 – 16 April 2018) was an American-bred, Irish-trained Thoroughbred racehorse who won five Group One races in Britain and Ireland as a three-year-old in 2000: the St James's Palace Stakes, Eclipse Stakes, Sussex Stakes, Juddmonte International Stakes and Irish Champion Stakes. He was named the 2000 Cartier Horse of the Year. The horse was sent to stud and proved to be an outstanding sire.

Nicknamed the "Iron Horse" on account of his toughness and constitution, Giant's Causeway was hailed by his trainer Aidan O'Brien as a "true champion".[1]



Giant's Causeway was a chestnut horse with a white blaze. He was bred in Kentucky by Coolmore Stud and Michael Tabor. His sire Storm Cat was the 1999 and 2000 leading sire in North America, and his dam Mariah's Storm also produced Freud, the 2008 leading sire in New York.

Racing career


1999: Two-year-old season


As a two-year-old in 1999, Giant's Causeway was unbeaten in three races: a maiden race at Naas, the Futurity Stakes at the Curragh and the Prix de la Salamandre at Longchamp.

2000: Three-year-old season


In the spring of 2000, Giant's Causeway won the Gladness Stakes at the Curragh and then finished second in both the 2000 Guineas and the Irish 2000 Guineas.

He then won five straight Group One races: the St. James's Palace Stakes at Royal Ascot, the Eclipse Stakes at Sandown Park, the Sussex Stakes at Goodwood, the Juddmonte International Stakes at York and the Irish Champion Stakes at Leopardstown.

His winning sequence was broken in the Queen Elizabeth II Stakes at Ascot on 23 September, when he was beaten half a length by Observatory. On his final racecourse appearance, Giant's Causeway was sent to the United States to contest the Breeders' Cup Classic at Churchill Downs in which he raced on dirt for the first time. Starting at odds of 7.6/1, he was beaten only a neck into second place by the American colt Tiznow.

Giant's Causeway's performances in 2000 earned him European Horse of the Year honours.

Retirement and Breeding Career


In 2001, Giant's Causeway started his stud career at Coolmore Stud in Ireland. He stood one season there before relocating to Coolmore's United States branch Ashford Stud in Versailles, Kentucky. He was a great success at stud, becoming one of the most influential sires in North America. In 2006, he stood for a fee of $300,000.

Giant's Causeway died at the Ashford Stud on 16 April 2018 after a "brief illness" at the age of 21.[2]

Notable Progeny


Giant Causeway's notable descendants include:[3]

c = colt, f = filly

Foaled Name Sex Major Wins
2002 Footstepsinthesand c 2000 Guineas
2002 My Typhoon f Diana Stakes
2002 Maids Causeway f Coronation Stakes
2002 Aragorn c Oak Tree Derby, Eddie Read Stakes, Shoemaker Mile Stakes, Del Mar Mile Handicap
2002 Shamardal c Poule d'Essai des Poulains, St James's Palace Stakes, Vintage Stakes, Dewhurst Stakes
2003 Heatseeker c Santa Anita Handicap
2003 Frost Giant c Suburban Handicap
2003 First Samurai c Hopeful Stakes
2004 Mike Fox c Queen's Plate
2004 Suzuka Causeway c Keio Hai Spring Cup
2004 Swift Temper c Ruffian Stakes, Delaware Handicap, Groupie Doll Stakes
2004 Red Giant c Virginia Derby, Fourstardave Handicap, Clement L. Hirsch Turf Championship Stakes
2005 Cowboy Cal c Oak Tree Mile Stakes, Strub Stakes, San Pasqual Handicap, Bryan Station Stakes
2006 Ghanaati c 1000 Guineas Stakes
2007 Eishin Apollon f Mile Championship
2007 Await the Dawn f Hardwicke Stakes, Kilternan Stakes
2007 Eskendereya f Wood Memorial Stakes, Pilgrim Stakes, Fountain of Youth Stakes
2009 Creative Cause c Norfolk Stakes, San Felipe Stakes
2009 Irish Mission c Glens Falls Stakes, La Prevoyante Stakes
2010 Rite of Passage c Ascot Gold Cup
2010 Red Rifle c Bowling Green Handicap, Dominion Day Stakes
2011 Protonico c Alysheba Stakes, Discovery Handicap
2012 Take Charge Brandi c Breeders' Cup Juvenile Fillies
2013 Aquaphobia c United Nations Stakes
2013 Brody's Cause c Breeders' Futurity Stakes, Blue Grass Stakes
2014 Bricks and Mortar c Manhattan Handicap, Turf Classic Stakes, Pegasus World Cup Turf, Arlington Million, Breeders' Cup Turf
2014 Vexatious f Personal Ensign Stakes
2019 Classic Causeway c Belmont Derby


Pedigree of Giant's Causeway
Storm Cat
Storm Bird Northern Dancer Nearctic
South Ocean New Providence
Shining Sun
Terlingua Secretariat Bold Ruler
Crimson Saint Crimson Satan
Bolero Rose
Mariah's Storm
Rahy Blushing Groom Red God
Runaway Bride
Glorious Song Halo
Immense Roberto Hail To Reason
Imsodear Chieftain


  1. ^ Mark Storey, '"A true champion" – O'Brien tribute after death of Giant's Causeway'. Racing Post, 18 April 2018, retrieved 19 July 2022
  2. ^ "Giant's Causeway Dead at 21". The Blood-Horse. 17 April 2018.
  3. ^ "Giant's Causeway". Ahonoora. Retrieved 7 August 2019.