2018 – 2020 Graduation

The Class of 2020 graduated from Godolphin Flying Start on Wednesday 1st July via Zoom Webinar. While there may be no substitute for actual human interaction, the remote setting made for a truly international affair and allowed involvement from those who may not ordinarily have been able to travel to Ireland for the event.

Trainees were joined online by over 100 family, friends and mentors from across the globe with video messages broadcast from Dubai, Australia, the USA, Ireland and the UK. Executive Director of Godolphin Flying Start, Clodagh Kavanagh, opened proceedings from Kildangan Stud in Ireland and said of the two-year Thoroughbred Industry Leadership and Management Programme;

“There are few life experiences as all encompassing, as varied and as sustained as the two years of Godolphin Flying Start. As very many graduates have said, it is truly life changing.”

Kavanagh continued;

“The development, maturity, and the experiences gained during the programme mean that this group come to graduation today as self-aware, resilient and skilled individuals. Ready to apply their many learnings and ideas to the thoroughbred industry of which they are now part of the fabric.”

Tattersalls Chairman and longstanding Trustee of Godolphin Flying Start, Edmond Mahony, addressed trainees from his Newmarket office and said;

“I have learned as much from being involved with Godolphin Flying Start as I have contributed. From early beginnings the course has developed and grown and prospered, not only thanks to its excellent management but also thanks to the exploits of its graduates who are now contributing to our industry as leaders themselves.

“The course has become a byword for quality and its success has been achieved by the diversity of nationality, age, gender and the personality of its graduates and all involved in Godolphin Flying Start can look back in satisfaction, if not a little pride, at what has been achieved.”

Godolphin Flying Start is accredited by the University College Dublin Michael Smurfit Business School as a Graduate Certificate in Management and Helen Brophy, Director of Executive Development at UCD, also made an address from her Dublin base.


Crossing the pond to Lexington, Kentucky, it was the role of Godolphin USA’s Chief Operating Officer, Dan Pride, to virtually present the twelve trainees with their graduation certificates and he congratulated them on their achievements.


The close group comprised of five men and seven women from USA, UK, Ireland, France and Australia, they are; Nico Archdale (UK), Lucy Blake (Ireland), Corbin Blumberg (USA), John Bourke (Ireland), Samantha Cripps (USA), Luke Evans (UK), Liza Hendriks (USA), Amelie Lemercier (France), Annise Montplaisir (USA), Niall O’Connor (UK), Isabella Paul (UK) and Anna Power (Australia).


The last to accept her certificate was Anna Power, who achieved the highest grade among the 2020 graduating group, and said;


“It is so amazing that by the virtue of one man’s generosity, His Highness Sheikh Mohammed, that we are all here today receiving our graduation certificates. I am hugely grateful to everyone who has helped us along the way.


“To my fellow trainees, I can’t wait to watch you set the world alight with your passion, knowledge and energy and I’m so proud to have graduated with you.”


Joe Osborne, Managing Director of Godolphin Ireland and Trustee of Godolphin Flying Start, was hugely complimentary of the Class of 2020 and added;


“On behalf of the global Godolphin team I congratulate this graduating class and wish them success and fulfilment.  It is an exceptional group in extraordinary times and I am confident they will all do great things in their respective careers.”