Northern Dancer’s farm in sad state

by | 08.25.2011 | 7:04am
Derby winner Northern Dancer became a highly influential sire after retirement from racing

The Toronto Star reports on what's happened to the farm where the great Northern Dancer was born and is buried.  Windfields Farm in Oshawa, Ontario was closed in 2009, and since then has “fallen victim to nature, vandals and bureaucracy:”

“And, to the dismay of horse lovers and Windfields enthusiasts, a memorial park at the burial grounds where 15 champions are interred is still years away.”

“I cry inwardly to see what has become of that place,” says lifelong Oshawa resident Bob Hooper, who calls himself its biggest fan. “That was where movie stars, royalty and business tycoons went to see the horses.”

  • Hail To Reason

    The Canadian Thoroughbred Institutions got a free ride on the late E.P. Taylor’s back and gave nothing back to preserve his history and legacy. To completely neglect the grave of a horse like Northern Dancer who influenced the history of the Thoroughbred bred around the world is inexcusable and as a result the Taylor family name has been disgraced by those that followed him.

  • Phil

    More rich people who can’t take care of their own.

  • Somewhereinthepond

    I went to the farm in about 2006 – it was a superb place.

  • al

    Isn’t Northern Dancer buried at the old Winfield’s Farm in Maryland?

  • Gonzalez

    Maybe Blowen can get them dug up and put in his “Horse Sematary”.

  • Richard Henley

    Step up Woodbine!
    Northern Dancer’s final resting place — the infield at the track. He is your greatest son.

  • oh canada

    While the breeding business is risky at the best of times, resting your entire operation on the back of one stallion, a diminutive one at that, is financial suicide. Fortunately for E.P. Taylor, no one covered the $25,000 reserve bid for the foal that was to become Northern Dancer. Northern Dancer went on to become the greatest sire of the last half of the 20th century. By the mid 1970s the writing was on the wall. There was nothing to replace the great Dancer in the Windfields barn. The racing and breeding operation took a dramatic turn south. Because of his love of the sport E.P. Taylor did his best to maintain, at least, the illusion of Windfields greatness. With E.P. passing the farm passed to his son who did not share the passion for the sport and had financial considerations beyond racing. The once mighty racing dynasty that was instrumental in the creation of the OJC began the inevitable downward slide decades ago.

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    ~~~▄▄██▌█ ░░░░ The Karma TRUCK IS COMING!░░░░░ ▐
    ▄▄▄▌▐██▌█ ░░░░░ I know a few people who need a ride░▐

  • vicki

    I am so disappointed with the response to this news article considering we are racing fans. Personally, I’m going to forge ahead & work the internet connections I have to make this deplorable situation change.
    #4, read the article – no he was brought back, in his entierity to Windfields in Oshawa.
    #5-your comment is offensive & again, you didn’t ‘get’ the point. No one is looking to ‘git them dug up & put in a semetary!!’ #6, I agree, Woodbine, step up. But not to have him moved to the infield. I say, step up to solve the current problem w/ the farm. Pressure via public can only help, not hurt .
    I’ll find the nec email addresses, links to blogs etc & ost again. ND’s grave can t be forgotten

  • Bellwether


  • Gonzalez

    You can’t tell me that you believe that Blowen isn’t trying to figure a way to get these remains to his facility. If you think I’m wrong, you don’t know the man. Think of the visitor$ he’d get.
    I have faith that the Canadian fans and people in the business will see to it that this resting place of these great horses will be properly preserved intact.

  • Hail To Reason

    I think the way to resolve this issue is Mrs Taylor and her children should finish taking care of their responsibility towards the establishing a proper dignified site for Northern Dancer’s grave. They have made a lot of money selling the farmland and there is no excuse for not fulling the late E.P. Taylor’s legacy towards North Dancer and Thoroughbred history.

  • Justin Nixon

    Unfortunately the grave-site is tied up in bureaucracy as it is legally owned now by Durham College, and is being transferred to the new University of Ontario-Institute of Technology. REtired Durham College president has stated that there were plans in the discussion stages of a memorial park, but that was limited to exploratory conversation. Let’s all work for a memorial at Windfields.

  • Hail To Reason

    The Taylor family didn’t want the responsibility to pay for a site so they passed the issue on to the Provincial Government and wanted the taxpayers to pay. Any family that has any significant artifacts or memorabilia of historical value and they want to donate or sell they always apply restrictions to the items on how, who and where the subject will be handled and administered. The Taylor family can get it back if they really want it and the college wouldn’t charge them as educational institutions don’t have funds for that sort of thing.

  • Destinybeaker

    I think the Taylor family was wrong in letting it get to this state. They had all the right to keep it intact but wanted to get out. EP and Charles are rolling around in their graves now and alot of Canadian fans such as myself are totally disgusted about this.

  • Richard Golden Northview Stallion Station

    Northern Dancer died at our farm when he was 29 years old. The day after he died, we were told to look in a shed that was on the farm and never used.We were told that there was a coffin for Northern Dancer in that shed and that his remains were to be shipped back to Windfields Farm in Canada along with his halter. We took care of Northern Dancer for 3 years before he passed away and his name still remains on his stall.
    We have Kings Bishop and Tentam buried at our farm alongwith Caveat, Smarten, Two Punch and others. We would welcome the opprtunnity to pay for the removal of Northern Dancer’s remains and place him where he belongs at the farm that he dominated the Stallion world when he stood for Windfields.

  • Destinybeaker

    I totally agree with you Mr. Golden

    Although I am a Canadian and live not too far from Northern Dancer, I feel it would be the best choice right now since the University and Taylors family couldnt seem to care less about him anymore.

  • Joe

    Richard Golden: may your wish comes true. The remains of the great Northern Dancer should be moved from weed fields, Canada to his old Windfields, MD, where his memory could be honored with a proper monument that would reflect how exceptional he was.

  • Young at Racing

    I am absolutely disgusted with the Taylor/Mappin family for not taking care of the Windfields legacy. As a Canadian racing fan, I had always assumed that when the property sold, it would be designated a Canadian heritage site. The family are a disgrace to the memory of EP Taylor and the racing community here. I have traveled a great deal working at stud farms all over the world and the one Canadian name that everyone has heard of is Northern Dancer. I am devastated. A memorial should have been ready to go since the day it the farm closed it doors.

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