01/26/2004 12:00AM

Kinghaven plans to close

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Kinghaven Farms in Ontario, one of Canada's most important Thoroughbred farms, will close its Thoroughbred operation by the end of the year, according to a report in The Blood-Horse.

Kinghaven owner David Willmot told the trade publication that he will remain a Thoroughbred breeder and keep his own mares but will board those mares at another operation. Willmot and his family will continue to live at Kinghaven.

In recent years, Kinghaven Farms has operated largely as a boarding farm for clients and stands no stallions.

Willmot's father, Donald "Bud" Willmot, former chairman of Molson Industries, established Kinghaven in 1967. Between its opening and Bud Willmot's death in 1994 at age 77, the farm became one of the industry's top nurseries. Bud Willmot was voted into Canadian racing's Hall of Fame in 1991.

Kinghaven has won nine Sovereign Awards as Canada's leading breeder and five as the country's leading owner. The best runners bred or raced by Kinghaven include Canada's 1994 Horse of the Year Alywow; six-time Sovereign Award winner Carotene; 1988 Canadian Horse of the Year Play the King; and Queen's Plate winners Steady Growth, With Approval, Izvestia, and Market Control.