My mission to solve the mystery of Nearctic began as a casual question: where was

Nearctic

Nearctic when the other horses were entering the starting gate for the 1957 Queen’s Plate?  He was, after-all, the most regally-bred horse in the country.  I knew that his owner, EP Taylor, had gone to great lengths, and expense, to acquire Nearctic’s dam, Lady Angela from England; and even greater lengths and expense to negotiate the mating that would produce Nearctic.

Other than that, and that he sired Northern Dancer, I knew little about Nearctic.  I was a youngster when Nearctic raced and not long after his son won the Kentucky Derby, Nearctic was exiled to Maryland to stand at Mrs. DuPont’s Woodstock Farm.

I was writing a lengthy piece for my series, Supreme, for leading Japanese magazine, Weekly Gallop.  I was at the part where EP Taylor and his wife,Winifred, not only each had their own racing stables, they each had a horse entered in the 1957 Queen’s Plate.  Chopadette was owned by Mrs. Taylor and he owned Lyford Cay.  The good-natured rivalry between husband and wife was often reported by Canada’s sports writers.

EP Taylor offered to buy Lyford Cay’s jockey, Avelino Gomez, a brand new Cadillac if his horse won the race.  He did.  Mrs. Taylor’s Chopadette was second.  Avelino Gomez was soon driving a black Cadillac, the size of a yacht around the backstretch.

Both Lyford Cay and Chopadette were born of Windfields crop of 1954.  As was Nearctic.  I knew he had raced at two and won stakes both in Canada and US.  It was at this juncture I asked the question: “What happened to Nearctic?”

I thought finding the answer would be simple.  I was wrong…. to be continued

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