The elegant Florence Nightingale
Born in 1922, Florence Nightingale was from the first crop of Man o’ War. Her dam was an unraced mare name The Nurse, who boasted a pedigree including not only super stallion Hanover, but also British wonder St Simon, and Correction, the full sister to champion Domino.
Florence herself was a tall, sleek filly with a powerful stride. Despite her good looks and sterling pedigree, she won only five races from her career 34 starts. Still, she was considered one of Man o’ War’s earliest star offspring, especially after her impressive and front-running win in the 1925 Coaching Club American Oaks
At the start of the CCAO, Florence Nightingale jumped to an early lead that she never relinquished. It was noted that “she won, hard held, by four or five lengths”, and her time of 2:17 3/5 was one of the fastest times in the history of the race. Detractors claimed that she had beaten a weak field, which had been without two of the biggest 3-year-old fillies of the year, Maid at Arms and Blue Warbler. Nevertheless, Florence Nightingale ended up sharing championship honors with Maid at Arms, who also happened to be another Man o’ War filly
As a broodmare, the tall mare failed to impress. Of her three registered foals, only one had real impact. Her only daughter, Knight’s Nurse (by Bright Knight), was matched with British champion Bahram in 1944, and the resulting colt was called Bovard. At three, Bovard won the Louisiana Derby before finishing third in the Preakness Stakes