08/19/2009 11:00PM

End of the line for Windfields Farm


LEXINGTON, Ky. - Windfields Farm, the respected 73-year-old Thoroughbred racing and breeding operation that produced champions and stood Northern Dancer, will close its doors this year after dispersing its remaining bloodstock.

Ontario-based Windfields will disperse its horses at the Keeneland November sale this year, according to a release the operation issued late Thursday afternoon.

Canadian industrialist E. P. Taylor founded Windfields in 1936. He went on to receive Eclipse Awards as outstanding breeder in 1977 and 1983 and, in the name of Windfields, led North American breeders by purse earnings nine times, by stakes winners 13 times, and by number of races won 19 times. Products of the Windfields program have won 21 Queen's Plates in Canada, and the Windfields racing stable also earned Canada's leading owner title 15 times.

Taylor's son Charles P. B. Taylor took over operations in 1980, and family members carried on after his death in 1997. E. P. Taylor and Windfields together bred 48 champions and 361 stakes winners. The most famous was 1964 Kentucky Derby and Preakness winner and leading sire and broodmare sire Northern Dancer. That great stallion - sire of such Windfields-bred stars as Epsom Derby winners Nijinsky II, Secreto, and The Minstrel - still is having impact on the breed.

Windfields also bred champions Devil's Bag and Glorious Song, Storm Bird, and El Gran Senor; such prominent stallions and mares as Saint Ballado, Vice Regent, and Archers Bay; and such outstanding mares as Kamar, La Lorgnette, and Love Smitten.

"What my father started has lasted longer than anyone ever imagined," said current Windfields president, E. P. Taylor's daughter Judith Taylor Mappin. "We have been so fortunate with our horses and our staff that we remained in this business we love for decades longer than expected. Now, with the older grandchildren beginning to face their own retirement plans, it is simply time to wind things up."