Harness racing champion Westburn Grant dead; Inter Dominion and dual Miracle Mile winner

Australian harness racing has lost one of its all-time greats with the death of Westburn Grant.

His trainer-driver and adoring caretaker in retirement Vic Frost said Westburn Grant died at his property near Tweed Heads on Thursday, just a couple of months short of his 35th birthday.

Westburn Grant, affectionately known as “Spot”, won 38 of his 67 starts and over $2 million, including the 1992 Melbourne Inter Dominion and two Miracle Miles in 1989 and ‘90.

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Westburn Grant won two Miracle Miles during his stellar career.Source:News Corp Australia

“He’d had a tumour on his neck and went downhill in the last week,” Frost said. “It’s a really sad time … he’s been with me all his life. I raced his Mum (Westburn Vue) and he’s been with me since he was born.

“He’s had a fantastic life, he was almost 35. He’s had the run of the place at home here with Gail (Frost’s wife) and I. He’d help himself to the hay shed and wander from one horse to another to stand next to them, many of those horses his descendants. Gail pampered him like nothing else.

If you’re wondering why Westburn Grant was so adored and such a special horse, take the time to watch this. Very special. https://t.co/3F4gEQjNR4 https://t.co/1GWsJ5Hxcv

“What a super racehorse he was, too. He had blistering speed and could do it early or late, as well as having a fair bit of stamina.

Frost will always treasured the two Miracle Mile wins in 1989 and 1990, but spoke most glowingly of his 1992 Melbourne Inter Dominion win.

“That was a real challenge, a real triumph,” he said. “He’d always had bad feet, but they were a huge issue during that series.

“I had to find a long stretch beach to train him and I did, at least a couple of hours from Melbourne at a place called Venus Bay.

“We were away from the world and nobody could contact me. I got him as well as I could and he did the rest in the final.”

With the news of Westburn Grant's passing yesterday we look back at the very special horse, a once-in-a-lifetime star that captured the essence of what it was like to be a champion on the Grand Circuit.

Here's his win in the '92 Inter Dom Grand Final at Moonee Valley #RIPSpot pic.twitter.com/s2DfFS1g5a

The most special win of Westburn Grant’s career for Frost came when he landed his second Group 1 WA Pacing Cup victory in January, 1992. It came just two weeks after Vic and his then wife, Margaret, lost their son Gary in a tragic accident at home.

“We were in Perth with the horse when Gary died,” Frost said. “We went back home, left the horse with Colin Brown in Perth, and went back a week or so later and ‘Spot’ did it for us. That win meant so much.”

Originally published asSweet ‘Spot’ holds special place in Frost’s heart

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