18th Jan 2012
You may have seen some of the past pupil photos which have been circulating on Twitter recently. They highlight some of the great achievers who have passed through the INS stud management course. We receive our new intake in a couple of weeks. They look an impressive bunch. As Alex Ferguson said towards the end of last season “Arsenal have the easiest run-in, ON PAPER” after which the Gunners proceeded to drop points like Marie Antoinette distributing cakes. Our 2012 students come from ten countries and will bring to 28 the number of countries which have had a student here over the four decades. We will introduce them to you gradually.
The Eclipse Awards were given last night and this follows the Golden Globes the night before. Any award system will have supporters and critics but the idea of a prize which is cherished and debated must be good for the industry involved. Our European categories may be too predictable for any frisson of excitement to accompany the event. We rate the horses the day after the big race and so the leaderboard is always updated.
Anybody who has ever owned a racehorse (and it should be compulsory before an opinion can be given) will appreciate how elusive a win can be, and to achieve “best of generation” status is never entertained as a possibility. How then are the same names cropping up year after year? Adena Springs win their eighth Eclipse award as breeder? Juddmonte having to build a new trophy room? What is the secret? I loved the quote from Martin Schwartz on receiving his Eclipse Award “if you don’t have a dream, how are you going to make a dream come true?” He didn’t attribute it to “Happy Talk” but we knew that, didn’t we?
What are the ingredients that produce the consistent success of the serial award winners? I am reminded of the Clive Woodward quote “doing 100 things 1% better than the opposition”. Thankfully for us dreamers the superstars worldwide at the moment include plenty of rags-to-riches examples.